Decisions made by police officers in Miami-Dade County could have a chilling effect on the immigration status of individuals in our area. A policy established in 2015 allows law enforcement officials in the county to issue civil citations for those found in possession of small amounts of marijuana and other minor offenses. Instead, in tens of thousands of instances, these officers have chosen to arrest the individuals involved rather than opt for civil citations. For undocumented immigrants, this has increased the risks of deportation by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) after minor infractions of the law.
Changes in Policy May Play a Role in Increased Arrests
Until early 2017, it was the policy of Miami-Dade County not to cooperate closely with ICE in misdemeanor cases. In January 2017, however, the city of Miami shifted its policy after threats that they might lose federal grants. This resulted in ICE being called for individuals with uncertain immigration status after arrests for offenses ranging from possession of small amounts of marijuana to littering and even loitering.
Staying in Jail to Receive Legal Help
In some cases, undocumented immigrants have been unwilling to post bail because of the likelihood that ICE would pick them up immediately upon their release from prison. By remaining in jail, these individuals can access the services of a qualified Miami deportation lawyer to resolve their immigration issues before ICE takes custody and moves them to a detention center where they might not be able to access legal help.
The Importance of a Qualified Miami Deportation Lawyer
Especially in the current political climate, enlisting the professional services of a Miami deportation lawyer can help immigrants and their families to avoid the worst consequences of minor infractions of the law. By calling a Miami immigration attorney as soon as possible after an arrest, these individuals can mitigate the damage done by these minor offenses and can stay on track to remain in the U.S. legally.
At Pozo Goldstein, our team of Miami immigration lawyers includes a former judge and two former prosecutors for immigration cases. This depth of experience allows us to provide you and your family with the most effective and practical representation possible for your case. Call us today at 305-856-0400 to schedule a free in-office consultation with our experienced immigration attorneys. We look forward to the chance to help you and your family pursue your own version of the fabled American dream.