Northern Virginia is the home to many people who are not United States citizens.
People who live in the area but do not have citizenship need to be especially careful to understand their rights if they are charged with any type of crime.
The reason is that, even if a person is a permanent resident of this country, they still can face deportation for certain types of criminal offenses.
There are many different types of criminal offenses that can lead to deportation. The important thing to remember is that these are the types of charges people from all walks of life get accused of much more often than one might think.
- Just about any drug conviction can lead to deportation. Some convictions are easier to manage than others. For example, a lower-level marijuana conviction will likely not be grounds for deportation.
- Any conviction related to domestic violence can lead to deportation.
- Most firearm convictions can lead to deportation.
- Many crimes involving theft or any type of illegal dishonesty, especially in a government proceeding, can lead to deportation.
- Any crime where you could receive a sentence of at least 1 year, even if you do not actually get jail time, carries with it some risk of deportation.
What are my options if I am charged with a crime as a non-citizen?
A non-citizen who is facing a criminal charge in state or federal court should make sure they understand their rights and options, including possible immigration consequences if they get convicted.
By pleading guilty to a case, a non-citizen may waive important rights to contest their criminal charge.
Also, it is often not clear whether a criminal conviction would lead to deportation. Depending on the situation, there may also be some defenses to deportation in immigration court. In other cases, the best option is to vigorously defend against a criminal charge.