The Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals recently held that Florida Statute 843.01, Resisting an Officer With Violence, is a crime involving moral turpitude for immigration purposes. In Cano vs. U.S. Attorney General, the Eleventh Circuit determined that because the statute in its entirety is a general intent crime, and because the statute requires more than just a mere touching, but an act of intentional violence, the statute falls under the umbrella of crimes deemed to be crimes involving moral turpitude.
The significance of this decision is that an immigrant who pleads guilty to resisting an officer with violence in the State of Florida will be convicted, whether he or she receives a withhold or not, for immigration purposes of a crime involving moral turpitude. That conviction may be the basis for inadmissibility or deportability and could lead to denial of immigration benefits, a green card, denial or reentry into the country or deportation.
This is just one of many criminal convictions that can have dramatic consequences for non-U.S. citizens. Never plead guilty or no contest to a criminal charge without first seeking the advice of an experience immigration attorney.
Read the Cano decision here.