I am at the border, I was found attempting to enter the US illegally, am I eligible for release on bond?
Generally, if an alien is at the US border or port of entry and they seek entry in the US but an immigration officer determines that they are seeking to enter the US illegally, and they are detained, they cannot be eligible for release on bond. The alien is considered an inadmissible alien.
This happens when:
- The alien is found to have committed acts of fraud or misrepresentation in applying for a US visa;
- They are found to be inadmissible because of a medical, mental or psychological disorder;
- They are suspected of having committed crimes involving national security or acts of terrorism; or
- They have outstanding warrants or indictments for serious or aggravated felonies.
I entered the US illegally and then, I was arrested, am I eligible for release on bond?
No, a person who entered the US without inspection is considered to have entered the US illegally. An alien who has been unlawfully present in the US and who has not gained lawful resident status cannot be eligible for release on bond.
I am a lawful permanent resident in the US (green-card holder) but I had been convicted of a crime and detained by ICE. Am I eligible for release on bond?
It depends on what kind of crime you had been convicted of and the type of penalty attached to the criminal conviction. Even if an alien has a green card, if the alien has been sentenced to a term of imprisonment for at least 1 year, the alien is considered deportable and cannot be released on bond.
What kinds of crimes render an alien ineligible for release on bond?
An alien is ineligible for release on bond when they have committed and have been convicted of aggravated felonies. Aggravated felonies are serious types of crimes which involve penalties of more than one year imprisonment. The following are examples of aggravated felonies:
- Sexual abuse of a minor
- Sale of controlled substances
- Sale of firearms or explosive devices and materials
- Money laundering and other financial crimes or racketeering
- Any crime involving violence (for example, robbery)
- Crimes relating to child pornography
- Gambling offenses where the penalty is more than one year of imprisonment
- Prostitution for commercial advantage
- Human trafficking, slavery, involuntary servitude, and human smuggling
- Fraud or deceit where the loss to the victim exceeds $10,000
- Tax evasion where the revenue lost by the US Government exceeds $10,000
- Falsely making, forging, counterfeiting, mutilating or altering a passport
- Trafficking in vehicles, bribery, counterfeiting, forging or altering identification numbers of vehicles
- Obstruction of justice, suborning perjury, perjury, bribery of witness
What is reinstatement of removal and why does this make me ineligible for release on bond?
Reinstatement of removal applies to aliens who had illegally entered the US and have left voluntarily, or have been removed or deported in the past, under a prior order of deportation, exclusion or removal. If that alien reenters the US illegally for a second time, the prior removal will be reinstated and applied. This means that the prior order of removal (the deportation order from a long time ago) will be reinstated or given legal force again as of the date it was issued. A reinstated order of removal cannot be reopened or reviewed. The alien who is re-arrested after reentering the US illegally will not be entitled to relief such as release on bond.
Are there exemptions from reinstatement of removal?
Yes, there are circumstances where the reinstatement of removal will not be enforced against the alien who illegally reentered the US. This means that they can still ask for release on bond even when the order of removal against them is reinstated because of some compelling circumstances or because the law has provided immigration relief to them. The following aliens are exempt from reinstatement of removal order:
- Aliens applying for adjustment of status or legalization and are covered by class action lawsuits
- Nicaraguans, Cubans, Salvadorans, Guatemalans and Eastern Europeans applying for adjustment under the Nicaraguan Adjustment and Central American Relief Act of 1997
- Haitians applying for adjustment under the Haitian Refugee Immigration Fairness Act of 1998
- Those individuals who reentered the US and applied for immigration relief (such as adjustment of status or asylum) before April 1, 1997
- Individuals who qualify for adjustment of status under the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA)
- Victims of trafficking and victims of crime who qualify for nonimmigrant status
If a prior removal order is reinstated, what legal options are open to me?
It is possible to file a petition for review of a reinstatement order before the circuit court. However, even if the alien succeeds in challenging the reinstated removal order, the alien will still be considered removable because they have entered the US illegally. Thus, it is only worth fighting a reinstated removal order when the alien has hope of relief from inadmissibility; that is, if the alien qualifies for asylum or cancellation of removal. The petition for review must be filed within 30 days after receipt of the reinstatement order.
If you or a loved one needs legal advice or legal information about eligibility for release on bond, you may contact any of our immigration attorneys who can help you. Call and speak with any of our immigration attorneys today.