H33 and North Carolina Driver’s License Requirements

The State House of Representatives recently passed H 33, “An Act to Provide that Certain Consulate or Embassy Documents May Not be Used to Determine a Person’s Identification or Residence for Governmental and Law Enforcement Purposes.” Among the provisions the bill would amend if enacted is G.S. 20-7(b4), which currently permits the North Carolina Division … Read more

News Roundup

I’ve been busy with New Prosecutors’ School this week. Working on the course, which we co-sponsor with the Conference of District Attorneys, is one of the best parts of my job. I’m always inspired by the enthusiasm, dedication, and professionalism of the assistant district attorneys who attend the school. Even though my full attention has … Read more

A New Constitutional Mandate for Defense Counsel

by School of Government Immigration Law Specialist Sejal Zota Is defense counsel constitutionally obligated to inform a noncitizen criminal defendant whether his guilty plea carries a risk of deportation? Yesterday, the United States Supreme Court said yes in a case called Padilla v. Kentucky. In Padilla, the petitioner—a lawful permanent resident (green card holder) for … Read more

Useful New Publication on U Visas

Crime victims who aren’t citizens may be reluctant to come forward, particularly if they are in the United States illegally. Congress attempted to address this problem in 2000, by creating a special category of temporary visa for crime victims who assist authorities in investigating and prosecuting those who victimized them. These visas, called U visas, have not … Read more

Supreme Court News

The Supreme Court (Washington, not Raleigh) has had a bit of a slow February so far, whether because of Justice Ginsburg’s well-publicized health problems or for some other reason.  Still, it’s done a couple things of interest to criminal lawyers. First, it adopted a broad interpretation of 18 U.S.C. 922(g)(9), which prohibits people who have … Read more

U Visas for Undocumented Crime Victims

Criminal lawyers are paying more attention to immigration issues in cases where the defendant is not a United States citizen, and that’s a good thing. But my sense is that many lawyers don’t know about a provision of immigration law that applies in certain cases where the victim is not a United States citizen. It’s … Read more

Crimmigration Resource

With almost 7% of North Carolina’s population now being foreign-born, it has become increasingly important for criminal lawyers on both sides to understand the interplay between criminal law and immigration law.  The relationship between the two bodies of law is most important in cases involving immigrant defendants who are neither citizens (citizens, generally, cannot lose … Read more