Court Holds Virginia Grand Larceny Conviction Is Not an Aggravated Felony

  1. The Fourth Circuit reversed and remanded with instructions to vacate the removal order, finding that the modified categorical approach did not apply since use of the word “or” in the definition of the crime did not automatically render the crime divisible. Thus, the court applied the categorical approach and found that the petitioner’s conviction under Va. Code Ann. §18.2-95 was not an aggravated felony theft offense.

DHS Releases End of Year Statistics for FY2014

DHS released enforcement statistics for FY2014, which include reports from ICE and CBP. In FY2014, ICE removed or returned 315,943 individuals, 213,719 of whom were apprehended while, or shortly after, attempting to illegally enter the U.S., and 102,224 of whom were apprehended in the interior of the U.S. CBP made 486,651 apprehensions in FY2014, compared to 420,789 in FY2013. Both apprehension and removal numbers were influenced by the 68% increase in individuals migrating from countries other than Mexico, predominately from Central America.

Huffington Post: Judge Seems Skeptical Of Joe Arpaio’s Immigration Lawsuit

The Huffington Post reports that yesterday, U.S. District Judge Beryl Howell was skeptical of a lawsuit filed by Sheriff Joe Arpaio over the constitutionality of the President’s executive actions on immigration. In the first hearing in the case, Judge Howell questioned whether Arpaio had standing to bring the case and whether he could show a concrete injury from the new policy. The judge also indicated that she was not entirely convinced the courts should weigh in on the executive actions. Read this story and more in AILA’s daily immigration news clips.

AAO Finds CSC Overlooked Evidence

The AAO sustained the appeal of an L-1A petition, finding that the beneficiary will be employed in a managerial capacity in his role as senior technical manager in transceiver engineering and that the beneficiary will assume the same position in the U.S. that he currently holds abroad. Courtesy of Clark Trevor.

Immigrant Rights Groups Sue over Artesia Deportation Process

The American Immigration Council, the ACLU, the National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild, and the National Immigration Law Center filed a complaintagainst the federal government, challenging its policies which deny due process to refugee mothers and children being detained in Artesia, NM. The complaint asks the court to halt deportations, calling Artesia a "deportation mill," created to send Central American mothers and children home to face certain harm, without any meaningful opportunity to be heard. 

The Notice to Appear and Removal Proceedings

Deportation and the Notice to Appear

I’m in Deportation Proceedings. Now What?

Question: I have been served with a Notice to Appear and been put into Removal Proceedings. What do I do?

Answer: The Removal Proceedings begins with issuance of a Notice to Appear and there are very specific requirements that must be included in Notice to Appear. If they are not included, you can try to ask for proceedings to be terminated.

Question: What type of requirements are supposed to be in the Notice to Appear?

Answer: The following items are required: In removal proceedings under section 240, written notice (in this section referred to as a ‘notice to appear’) shall be given in person to the foreign national (or, if personal service is not practicable, through service by mail to the alien or to the alien’s counsel of record, if any). Thus, the first item is that it must be properly served on the foreign national in order to give notice of the hearing.

It must specify the following:
“(A) The nature of the proceedings against the alien.
“(B) The legal authority under which the proceedings are conducted.
“(C) The acts or conduct alleged to be in violation of law.
“(D) The charges against the alien and the statutory provisions alleged to have been violated.
“(E) The alien may be represented by counsel and the alien will be provided (i) a period of time to secure counsel
“(F)(i) The requirement that the alien must immediately provide (or have provided) the Attorney General with a written record of an address and telephone number (if any) at which the alien may be contacted. The requirement that the alien must provide the Attorney General immediately with a written record of any change of the alien’s address or telephone number and the consequencesof failure to provide address and telephone information.

Next, there must be the time and place at which the proceedings will be held and the consequences of the failure, except under exceptional circumstances, to appear at such proceedings.

There must be listed the time and place of the proceedings.

Question: Will an attorney be appointed for me?

Answer: No. However, you do have the ‘right’ to have an immigration attorney of your choosing. Therefore, the first hearing will usually be continued in order to give you an opportunity in which to obtain an immigration attorney to help you.

Question: Should I admit the crimes listed on the Notice to Appear?

Answer: You should never admit the crimes. It is the burden of the government to prove that you are removable by clear and convincing evidence and that burden cannot be shifted because you simply admit to the crime.

Question: What about the grounds of removability? Should I admit to those as well?

Answer: First, you should make certain that you have an immigration attorney who is familiar and an expert in deportation and removal proceedings. In any event, some items of removability you could not realistically deny. However, many you can deny. For example, if you are being charged as an aggravated felon, there is a possibility that you can fight this and show you are wrongfully being classified as an aggravated felon.

In any event, it is very important to plea properly to the Notice to Appear and to fight the issuance or contents of the Notice to Appear if they are not properly served or placed in the Notice to Appear.

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