Post-Conviction Relief! Felony Penal Code § 459/460(b) “Second Degree Burglary” Offense and Felony 496(a), “Receiving Stolen Property Greater than $950 in Value,” Vacated Per Penal Code § 1473.7 Motion and Charges Completely Dismissed Pursuant to Penal Cod

Recently, at the Santa Ana Courthouse in Orange County, Attorney Steve Escovar was able to successfully litigate a post-conviction Penal Code section 1473.7 “Motion to Vacate” two of our client’s theft-related offenses.

Our client was convicted in 1995 of “Second Degree Burglary” (Penal Code section 459/460(b)) and “Receiving Stolen Property” (Penal Code section 496(a), both felony offenses.

At the time that our client hired our office, he was attempting to adjust his status in the United States through the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (“USCIS”). Our client was referred to our office by his immigration attorney because his immigration attorney believed that the theft-related offenses would damage his ability to adjust his immigration status application.

At the start of our representation, we sought to reduce these offenses to misdemeanors pursuant to “Proposition 47" (Penal Code section 1170.18) because this would place our office in a better position to later negotiate for immigration relief. Our Petition to reduce the felony offenses to misdemeanors was granted.

After further consulting with our client regarding the circumstances of his plea in this matter back in 1995, we then filed a motion to vacate the convictions pursuant to Penal Code section 1473.7. In our motion we argued that despite the waiver form advising our client that immigration consequences “may” result, our client should have been advised of the opportunity to negotiate to immigration neutral offenses that would not have the same damaging impact to his immigration case. For example, according to our client’s immigration counsel, had he only pled to one of the counts, as opposed to two, he would have a better chance at adjusting his status.

At the hearing on the motion, the prosecution did not oppose our request for relief and the charges were vacated! The offenses were then completely dismissed pursuant to Penal Code section 1385, “In the Interests of Justice!”

Our client will now be in a better position to move forward with adjusting his status!

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