Mooradian's client, a spouse of a U.S. Citizen and longtime resident of the United States, recently had a criminal conviction vacated from her record and dismissed in the Worcester District Court, removing a significant risk of deportation. The conviction, a larceny over $250 from over ten years ago, rendered the client deportable and at risk of physical separation from her long-time U.S. Citizen spouse and children.
The client, who had difficulty in understanding the immigration consequences of her criminal conviction, had plead to the charge about a decade ago because she was never advised by her criminal defense attorney at that time. After extensive negotiations, Mooradian was able to obtain an affidavit from defense counsel that he had not advised his client as to immigration consequences. Mooradian was able to show that not only was prior counsel's representation constitutionally deficient, but that the client had been prejudiced on account of that ineffective assistance and thus merited a new trial.
Once the motion for a new trial was granted, the Commonwealth agreed to dismiss the old charge, particularly in the absence of any significant subsequent record. As a result of vacating the charge, the client now appears eligible to freely travel in and out of the United States as a lawful permanent resident, as well as eligible to apply for United States Citizenship instead of being per se barred from a finding of good moral character.
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