Skip to content

Immigration attorney Scott Mossman maintains this blog to discuss recent court decisions that relate to the immigration consequences of criminal convictions and crime. The focus is on decisions by the U.S. Supreme Court, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, and the Board of Immigration Appeals. Occasionally it addresses decisions by other courts of appeal and California state law developments.

The Ninth Circuit published orders in five cases directing the Attorney General to state whether he would exercise prosecutorial discretion in those cases and to state the effect that would have on them. ICE Director John Morton’s June 17, 2011, memo on prosecutorial discretion prompted the court to issue the orders. In each case, the court already had denied the petition for review and the petitioner had filed a petition for rehearing. The petitioners all had favorable discretionary factors and no known criminal convictions. Judge O'Scannlain dissented from each order, contending that separation of powers prevented the court from even asking the Attorney General the question.

Read the orders at:

Empowered by years of tough sentencing-law changes in state legislatures and Congress, prosecutors have more muscle to extract guilty pleas from defendants and avoid trial.  This article discusses those changes, but fails to address what is the single biggest incentive for a noncitizen to accept a plea deal: the threat of deportation.

Read the article at