Experienced Defense For Immigrants Facing Criminal Charges

Even a minor criminal conviction can cause problems for someone who is not a citizen of the United States. In the past, a conviction would at worst lead to denial of your application for citizenship. But in recent years, the United States Department of Homeland Security has begun to actively remove people from the country when they are convicted of certain crimes.

The Law Office of Santiago & Associates offers criminal defense services backed by years of experience in the courtroom. Our lawyers will protect your rights and help you fight to stay in the U.S. when possible. Our criminal defense practice in this area includes:

  • DUI
  • Assault
  • Domestic violence
  • Drug possession
  • Distribution of drugs
  • Crimes involving firearms

If you are facing a criminal charge in New Jersey and are concerned about how it will affect your immigration status, we can help.

What Is A "Crime Of Moral Turpitude?"

Many immigration laws mention crimes "involving moral turpitude." Although there is no universal definition, these offenses usually include an intent to cause serious harm to another person. The most common examples are murder, kidnapping, voluntary manslaughter, robbery and aggravated assault.

If someone is convicted of a crime involving moral turpitude within five years of entering the country or obtaining a green card, they can be removed from the United States. Two of these convictions in your lifetime can also lead to removal from the country for most non-citizens.

Don't Face Criminal Charges Alone

Prior to pleading guilty to any criminal charge or serious matter, a judge will likely ask you about your immigration status, because the consequences can be more significant than the penalties for your offense. Make sure you have an experienced attorney on your side to help you make that important decision of what to do. Call our Freehold office at 732-410-7138 or send us an email to set up a consultation.