DiMaria Wins Deportation Case For Permanent Resident With Criminal Conviction

Client is a citizen of Peru who entered the United States in the 1980s.  In around 1994, Client was convicted of a crime that made him ineligible for a green card.  However, Client married a United States Citizen and his spouse filed papers for him to obtain his green card.  When Client filed his application for a green card in 1997, he did not disclose the fact that he was convicted of a felony in 1994 that disqualified him from obtaining a green card.  Although Client was fingerprinted by immigration, the immigration office overlooked the conviction.  Client then obtained his green card in 1997.  Client went on vacation in 2010 and upon his return to the United States, was arrested at the airport in Miami, Florida by Immigration Customs Enforcement (“ICE”).  The 1994 conviction came up when the border patrol officer reviewed Client’s record while he was at the airport.  The border patrol officer arrested client and placed him into deportation proceedings.   ICE charged Client with being deportable from the United States because of his criminal conviction and because he committed fraud on his green card application by not listing his arrest and conviction from 1994. Client was in jail in Miami, Florida and his family in New Jersey came to our office for a consultation.  The family hired DiMaria to represent Client.  First, we filed paperwork with ICE in Miami, Florida demonstrating that Client had a history of health problems.  We also showed that Client had lived in the United States for several years and was married.  Based on the documentation that we provided to ICE, client was released on an electronic monitoring device, an ankle bracelet so that ICE could track Client’s wereabouts.  ICE then transferred Client’s case to New Jersey because Client lived in New Jersey.  DiMaria represented Client in Court for about a year.  Under the current immigration law,  when an individual obtains his green card in the United States, but commits fraud by lieing on the application, Immigration must attempt to deport the person or take away the green card within five years after the person gets the green card.   This five year statute of limitations is in place to prevent immigration from attempting to deport someone whenever they want, twenty-thirty-forty years, etc.. after the person gets his green card. Therefore, in this case, the Judge granted our application and refused to deport client because immigration failed to attempt to deport him within five years after he got his green card.  He lied on the application in 1997 and got his green card in 1997, but immigration did not attempt to deport him until 2010, thirteen years after he got his green card.