Post-Conviction Motion Pursuant to Penal Code § 1473.7 Granted for a Client and Re-Negotiated to Immigration Neutral Plea!

Recently, in Los Angeles County at the Clara Shortridge Foltz Criminal Justice Center Courthouse, we successfully litigated a post-conviction motion on behalf of our client.

Our client had pled to a Penal Code § 470, a misdemeanor offense in 1996. He expunged his record pursuant to Penal Code § 1203.4 in 2017, before retaining our office. During the time our client hired our office, he was undergoing removal proceedings based on this offense, and was not eligible for Cancellation of Removal under INA § 240A(b) based on this conviction to a crime involving moral turpitude.

We began the post-conviction relief process by first obtaining a copy of the court file for this matter. Our office found that the transcript of the plea and the stenographic notes had been destroyed and only the docket was available. The docket indicated that the client had been advised about the immigration consequences of his plea but only that the conviction “may” result in immigration consequences.

In our motion, we argued that the advisement failed to accurately advise our client of the certain, permanent, and mandatory nature of the immigration consequences he would face as a result of the conviction. We further argued that had our client negotiated to a different charge and pled to an immigration friendly plea, such as Penal Code § 530.5, he would not be facing the immigration consequences he is currently suffering from.

After negotiating with the prosecutor, the prosecutor agreed to submit on the motion to vacate the plea and allowed our client to re-plea to the Penal Code § 530.5, an immigration neutral offense.

This is a great victory for our client and will better his opportunity to be eligible for cancellation of removal!

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