Crimmigration is a term that is used by criminal defense attorneys and immigration attorneys. It’s a term that was coined recently, and so there’s no exact definition of crimmigration. I don’t think it’s in the dictionary, but amongst New York and Westchester attorneys who practice in the field, in both criminal law and immigration, it refers to a body of law in the immigration law that deals with criminal offenses and their effects on someone’s immigration status. It basically means immigration laws and criminal laws put together, and that’s the term of art that the attorneys and judges use.

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What Are The Biggest Components Of Crimmigration?

The repercussions of crimmigration for aliens that do not have immigration status, such as undocumented immigrants, or are not citizens, are that various New York state crimes can have an effect on someone’s immigration status. It does not have to be a serious crime. For example, in New York state, a conviction of shoplifting, which is petty larceny in New York state—it could even not be a crime, it could be a violation and not result in a criminal record—can have extremely serious consequences on someone’s immigration status. This is because, for example, petty larceny is considered a crime of moral turpitude, and that person would be subject to deportation if he were not yet admitted to the United States. It’s very important to have a criminal defense attorney that is well-versed in the immigration law in your criminal case. That’s the repercussions. The criminal body of law must be considered in conjunction with the immigration law to really determine what the consequences are. Our Westchester attorneys who practice both criminal defense and immigration always consider the immigration consequences of a particular plea bargain, as do our Manhattan criminal defense and immigration lawyers.

Who Needs To Be Concerned About The Increasing Policies Surrounding Crimmigration?

People that need to be concerned about the increasing policies surrounding crimmigration are anyone that is not a citizen of the United States. Even if you have permanent status, and you have a green card, there are still crimes that would subject you to deportation proceedings. People that don’t have any status should be especially concerned, as well as people that are applying for green card. Basically, any immigrant in the United States that has been arrested, convicted, or has pled guilty to a crime should be concerned. There are pretty severe consequences to certain criminal convictions in the immigration body of the law. If you are an immigrant facing criminal charges in any of the New York City criminal court, such as the Bronx, Manhattan, Queens or Brooklyn or if you are facing criminal charges in any of the Westchester Courts, such as White Plains, Yonkers, Scarsdale, Mount Vernon, New Rochelle, Mt. Kisco, Port Chester, Rye, Rye Brook, Pelham, Ossining, Hartsdale, Greenburgh or Elmsford, then you need to be concerned about the immigration consequences of your criminal charge.

When It Comes To Immigrants And Crimes, Who Is Susceptible To Deportation?

Any immigrant that has been convicted or pled guilty to an aggravated felony is susceptible to deportation. In addition, any immigrant who’s been even arrested for certain crimes that are not aggravated felonies, but may be misdemeanors, violations, even those in family court—for example violating an order of protection against someone’s spouse, significant other, or a domestic partner—could be considered an offense that would subject the person to deportation. Anyone that is here, is not a citizen, and has been arrested should be concerned because they would be susceptible to deportation.

What Generally Happens When An Immigrant Is Arrested And Charged With A Crime?

I can specifically speak for what happens in New York State when an immigrant is arrested and charged with a crime. Our offices are in New York, the Law Office of Michael Joseph. We have offices in Manhattan, Queens, and Westchester. I myself do “Crimmigration,” so I am extremely familiar with that process. The process I’m going to speak to you is specifically towards New York State, but it’s more or less the same process in any other state in the United States. When an immigrant is arrested, he or she is booked and fingerprinted. They may be interrogated, or not. Hopefully the immigrant will exercise his or her right to counsel, the right to remain silent, and not speak with any authorities. After they’re arrested, they are sent to Central Booking where they are processed.

Once they are finished with Central Booking, they are sent to a criminal court judge. In that hearing, the judge will only determine whether the defendant is going to be released, whether he’s going to be released on bail, or whether he’s not going to be released, if it’s a serious crime. This hearing is called an Arraignment. The immigrant should definitely have a criminal defense attorney that’s experienced in immigration law. Once the judge determines whether the person is going to be released, put on bail, or remanded without bail, then the case will be put over for another date for an initial appearance in criminal court. The defendant will defend against the case, fight the case, or plead guilty, whatever decision he makes with his criminal defense attorney. I should also note though that during this process, they will conduct a background check and they will run a rap sheet.

That rap sheet may state whether this person is a citizen or not. The law is a bit nebulous with the present administration. Under the prior administration, with President Obama, law enforcement officials did not have the authority to notify immigration if it was not an extremely serious offense. However, with the new administration, it’s unclear as to what their policy is. In my experience, I believe that this administration is actively searching for illegal immigrants, and even legal immigrants. During the process of being arrested, there will also be a background check to see whether that person is an immigrant, or is not here without a visa, or is a citizen.

Get Information on Crimmigration in New York or call the Law Office of Michael H. Joseph, PLLC for a FREE Initial Consultation at  our Westchester Law Office  at (914) 574-8330 and get the legal answers you are seeking, or for cases in New York City, call our Manhattan immigration and criminal lawyers at (212) 858-0503.

WHEN RESULTS MATTER-CALL JOSEPH A Good Lawyer Can Be The Difference Between a Green Card and Deportation

Joseph has decades of experience in handling cases where the worlds of criminal law and immigration law collide. Not only is Joseph an accomplished criminal defense attorney and a veteran of the Courts in New York City and Westchester, he is a highly experienced immigration lawyer, who actively fights deportation cases. This experience gives Joseph an edge in being able to handle criminal defense cases in a manner, which avoids or minimizes the immigration consequences of  a criminal charge. 

If you are detained by I.C.E., Joseph is also familiar with the defenses to deportation and can actively handle both the deportation and criminal defense case, simultaneously. This holistic type of representation is a rarity in a world where most lawyers handle criminal defense or immigration, but not both. 

Joseph Ramirez, Esq. 

New York City and Westcheter
Criminal Defense Attorney, Immigration Lawyer and Deportation Defense Attorney

If you prefer email: Joseph Ramirez, can be reached at Joseph@newyorktriallawyers.org

Phone (Manhattan) 212-858-0503

Phone (Westchester) 914-574-8330

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The Law Office of Michael H. Joseph, PLLC

Law Office of Michael H. Joseph, PLLC

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