San Diego Criminal & Immigration Lawyer
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San Diego Lawyer for Immigration and Drug Charges

Working with Immigrants Charged with Drug Crimes

Drug convictions are devastating for the immigrant defendant. A conviction of a drug related crime will affect their immigrant status. A felony drug conviction can even be grounds for removal from the United States.

To avoid deportation from or inadmissibility to the United States, the non-citizen immigrant and their attorney must look beyond the criminal charge. If the prosecution refuses to negotiate, it may be necessary to go to trial and try to beat the case.

At Rodriguez Law Firm, we have the knowledge and the trial experience that you need to fight these difficult cases. We can represent you in criminal court and in immigration court.

We represent clients charged with the following drug crimes in San Diego:

  • Possession for sale of cocaine or methamphetamine
  • Possession and cultivation of marijuana
  • Drug manufacturing
  • Transportation & trafficking for sales
  • Possession with the intent to distribute
  • Prescription drug charges
  • Possession of drug paraphernalia
  • Driving under the influence of drugs

If you are facing drug charges, we can help you protect your right to stay in the United States. Reach out to our San Diego law firm at(619) 332-1703 today to schedule a consultation.

Can a California Drug Crime Result in Deportation?

A drug trafficking or possession offense is almost always considered a crime involving moral turpitude. Under 8 U.S.C. § 1227(a)(2)(B)(i) and the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) §237(a)(2)(B) any alien admitted to the U.S. and thereafter convicted of any controlled substance offense is deportable.

Any of the following convictions can result in deportation and inadmissibility for non-citizens:

  • Drug Trafficking
  • Possession of a controlled substance
  • Possession for the sale of a controlled substance
  • Being under the influence of a controlled substance

Being deportable means the noncitizen will can be removed from the United States. Being inadmissible means that the noncitizen will not be allowed to return to the United States.

A drug offense can be upgraded to a felony if federal drug laws would consider the offense a felony. A felony drug charge can result in mandatory deportation and prevent you from accessing certain types of relief.

Section 237(a)(2)(B)(ii) can also make a noncitizen removable if the “alien who is, or at any time after admission has been, a drug abuser or addict…”

Under section 237(a)(2)(B)(i), a drug abuser or drug addict does not need to be convicted in order to be deported. DHS will only need to show that the person was a drug abuser or addicted to a control substance any time after admission. The exception is if the noncitizen is convicted of a single offense involving possession for personal use of 30 grams or less of marijuana.

What is a Federally Controlled Substance?

The federal government of the United States defines controlled substances as any drug listed in the United States Controlled Substances act.

Some federally controlled drugs include:

  • Heroin
  • LSD
  • Ecstasy
  • Methamphetamine
  • Hydrocodone
  • Ketamine
  • Anabolic Steroids
  • Ativan
  • Xanax
  • Cough syrups or Tylenol with Codeine

Importantly, though state law may make certain substances illegal, these drugs might not be listed on a federal drug schedule. A crime involving a drug that is not federally listed would not automatically make you inadmissible or deportable.

Let Rodriguez Law Firm Fight for You Today

DHS will use a drug conviction to start removal proceedings and deport the noncitizen immigrant from the United States. Unfortunately, an immigrant convicted of a control substance is not eligible for bond. If you are arrested and charged with a control substance violation, our criminal defense team can help.

Immigrants that have already plead guilty might be able to file a Post-Conviction Relief motion. If granted, it will remove a drug conviction from your record. This motion will also remove the threat of deportation if no other issues of inadmissibility exist.

Are you a non-citizen who has been arrested for a drug crime in San Diego? Contact us at (619) 332-1703 and schedule a consultation today.

They've Been Where You're At

Past Clients Share Their Experience
  • Rodriguez Law Firm, my fiance and I are so thankful and appreciative for your assistance!

    - RK & EL
  • Best lawyer I recommend him

    - Anibal Rodolfo
  • Rodriguez Law Firm is outstanding!

    - J. M.
  • John R. Rodriguez Photo
    John R. Rodriguez

    Founding Attorney

    John R. Rodriguez is a San Diego trial attorney with the experience that will make a difference in your criminal or immigration case. His combined experience as a trial lawyer, former police officer, and private investigator has culminated into a successful legal career with a proven track record that his clients can rely on. He began his legal career as a criminal defense attorney defending Latino immigrants arrested in communities throughout Napa, Solano, and Contra Costa Counties for 15 years ...

Why Choose Rodriguez Law Firm?

Your Success is Our Success
  • Mission

    We are here to help immigrant families live the American dream.  We do this by offering competitive Fees and Payments Plans designed to help you afford our services.

  • Commitment

    Our commitment to our clients will never waiver.  We strive to always provide our clients with professional services and the best legal solutions available.

  • Honesty

    We understand that clients need to trust their attorney.  We work hard to earn your trust by being transparent and honest with our legal advice and proposed solutions.

  • Integrity

    Our integrity is the key to a successful Attorney-Client relationship.  We are committed to always serving your best interest with integrity and respect.