Seeking Refuge In the United States

When most people think about immigration, they imagine people sneaking in from other countries or trying to hide from criminal charges. What most people don't realize about immigration, however, is how difficult it is to live other places. In my native homeland, I had a difficult time feeding my kids on a shoestring budget, and I worried about safety on a daily basis. I needed an immigration attorney to make my dreams of a peaceful existence possible. I created this blog to help you to see how much of a difference the right legal counsel can make, so that you don't have to worry about the future.

3 Crimes That Make You Deportable


Suppose you hold a permanent resident green card or are a non-US citizen living on an immigrant visa. In that case, criminal charges can jeopardize your lawful immigration status and result in deportation. You can only escape deportation if you attain U.S. citizenship through naturalization. Not all crimes make you deportable, though. 

Below is a roundup of deportable offenses that you should watch out for. 

Drug Offenses

If convicted of controlled substance offenses, immigration officials can initiate a removal process. Some deportable drug-related crimes include drug transport, manufacturing, or possession with intent to sell. However, simple marijuana possession (less than 30 grams) in states where Marijuana is legal may not result in deportation. 

Immigration services also have grounds to deport you if you are an addict or a serial drug abuser, even if you lack a drug conviction. The same applies if you have been an addict or a drug abuser since admission to the country. Here, all the immigration service needs is a medical report or your admission to drug use to process your deportation. 

Crimes of Moral Turpitude (CIMT)

Crimes of moral turpitude refer to reckless acts or crimes done with evil intent, which violate the accepted community standards. Examples of crimes of moral turpitude are kidnapping, domestic violence, assault, fraud, robbery, and driving under the influence (DUI).

Conviction of a single crime of moral turpitude does not always dent your immigration status. However, you become deportable if you commit a crime of turpitude and receive a one-year prison sentence (or longer) within five years of admission to the U.S. Also, if you commit two or more crimes of moral turpitude any time after you enter the United States, you are subject to deportation. 

Aggravated Felonies

Aggravated felonies are crimes with severe immigration consequences for a non-citizen. An aggravated felony is different from an aggravated assault. For instance, drug possession with intent to distribute is an aggravated felony even if you don't receive any jail sentence for it. 

Crimes of aggravated felonies include murder, drug trafficking, distribution of child pornography, trafficking in firearms or explosives, violent crimes, and other offenses.

After a conviction on an aggravated felony, immigration officials arrange for your deportation. Unfortunately, you may not receive a waiver to ever return to the U.S after deportation. However, you can prove to the immigration judge that you have a credible fear of torture if you return to your native country. Here, your immigration lawyer can work with you to help withdraw your removal. 

If you are not sure how a drug offense, an aggravated felony, or a crime of moral turpitude affects your immigration status, you should consult an immigration lawyer. An immigration attorney can also fight for your charge aggressively to help you avoid deportation. 

For more information, contact a firm like Ricardo Skerrett Immigration Law Firm.


3 February 2022