Immigration Consequences of Criminal Activity

Description:

This report discusses the potential immigration consequences of criminal
activity. “Criminal activity” generally refers to conduct for which an alien has been
found or plead guilty before a court of law, though in limited circumstances
consequences may attach to the commission of a crime or admission of acts
constituting the essential elements of a crime. Consequences may flow from
violations of either federal, state or, in many circumstances, foreign criminal law. Some federal crimes are set out in the INA itself — alien smuggling, for example.
However, not all violations of immigration law are crimes. Notably, being in the
U.S. without legal permission — i.e., being an “illegal alien” — is not a crime in and
of itself.
Thus, for example, an alien who overstays a student visa may be an “illegal
alien,” in that the alien may be subject to removal from the U.S., but such an alien
is not a “criminal alien.”

Creator(s):
Location(s): United States
Creation Date: October 23, 2006
Partner(s):
UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Collection(s):
Congressional Research Service Reports
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Past 30 days: 1
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Creator (Author):
Garcia, Michael John

Legislative Attorney

Creator (Author):
Eig, Larry M

Legislative Attorney

Publisher Info:
Place of Publication: Washington D.C.
Date(s):
  • Creation: October 23, 2006
Coverage:
Place
United States
Description:

This report discusses the potential immigration consequences of criminal
activity. “Criminal activity” generally refers to conduct for which an alien has been
found or plead guilty before a court of law, though in limited circumstances
consequences may attach to the commission of a crime or admission of acts
constituting the essential elements of a crime. Consequences may flow from
violations of either federal, state or, in many circumstances, foreign criminal law. Some federal crimes are set out in the INA itself — alien smuggling, for example.
However, not all violations of immigration law are crimes. Notably, being in the
U.S. without legal permission — i.e., being an “illegal alien” — is not a crime in and
of itself.
Thus, for example, an alien who overstays a student visa may be an “illegal
alien,” in that the alien may be subject to removal from the U.S., but such an alien
is not a “criminal alien.”

Physical Description:

19 Pages.

Language(s):
Subject(s):
Partner:
UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Collection:
Congressional Research Service Reports
Identifier:
Resource Type: Report
Format: Text