Recently, at the Airport Courthouse in Los Angeles County, I obtained two dismissals on behalf of my client for his Health & Safety Code section 11550(b) misdemeanor convictions from 1986.
The only record of the convictions currently available for both cases was reference to the convictions in my client’s California Department of Justice Criminal History Information. The court files had been destroyed and we were unable to obtain transcripts of the pleas because there was no record of the court reporters present at the plea.
Based on the lack of record evincing that our client was provided the complete immigration advisements required by Penal Code section 1016.5, we filed motions to withdraw the pleas. In the motions, we argued that there was no evidence in the court files or any other sources to establish that the mandatory immigration advisement was provided to our client at the time of the plea.
Therefore, we filed Penal Code section 1016.5 motions arguing that the pleas should be vacated because there is no evidence in the court files to establish that the complete and accurate immigration advisements required by Penal Code section 1016.5 were administered at the time of the pleas.
We further argued that our client was prejudiced by the court’s failure to administer the required immigration consequences in both of his cases because a conviction for Health and Safety Code section 11550(b) subjects our client to deportation, exclusion from admission, and denial of naturalization pursuant to federal immigration law.
The Penal Code section 1016.5 motions were granted by the judge, vacating the convictions, and the cases were subsequently dismissed pursuant to Penal Code section 1385.
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