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    The Lawletter Blog

    Suzanne L. Bailey

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    IMMIGRATION LAW: Analyzing State Drug Paraphernalia Offense for Purposes of Removal Under INA

    Posted by Suzanne L. Bailey on Thu, Jul 9, 2015 @ 10:07 AM

    The Lawletter Vol 40 No 5

    Suzanne Bailey, Senior Attorney, National Legal Research Group

         Section 237(a)(2)(B)(i) of the Immigration and Nationality Act ("INA") provides:

         Any alien who at any time after admission has been convicted of a violation of (or a conspiracy or attempt to violate) any law or regulation of a State, the United States, or a foreign country relating to a controlled substance (as defined in section 802 of Title 21), other than a single offense involving possession for one's own use of 30 grams or less of marijuana, is deportable.

    8 U.S.C. § 1227(a)(2)(B)(i).1 In Mellouli v. Lynch, 135 S. Ct. 1980 (2015), the U.S. Supreme Court held that INA section 237(a)(2)(B)(i) was not triggered by a Kansas state law drug paraphernalia conviction for concealing four orange tablets in a sock. The defendant acknowledged that the tablets were unprescribed Adderall, but the criminal complaint did not identify the substance as Adderall. In so holding, the Court reversed the judgment of the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals, Mellouli v. Holder, 719 F.3d 995 (8th Cir. 2013), which had affirmed the decision of the Board of Immigration Appeals ("BIA") upholding the deportation order.

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    Topics: removal, immigration, The Lawletter Vol 40 No 5, drug paraphernalia, Suzanne Bailey, Mellouli v. Lynch, deportation

    CRIMINAL LAW: Prosecutorial Misconduct in Closing Argument

    Posted by Suzanne L. Bailey on Wed, Mar 25, 2015 @ 11:03 AM

    The Lawletter Vol 40 No 1

    Suzanne Bailey, Senior Attorney, National Legal Research Group

         A recent en banc decision from the Supreme Court of Washington serves as a reminder of the bedrock upon which our criminal justice system stands, that is, that every defendant is entitled to a presumption of innocence, which is overcome only when the State proves guilt beyond a reasonable doubt as determined by an impartial jury based on evidence presented at a fair trial. In State v. Walker, 341 P.3d 976 (Wash. 2015) (en banc), the defendant was charged as an accomplice to aggravated first-degree premeditated murder, first-degree felony murder, first-degree assault, first-degree robbery, first-degree solicitation to commit robbery, and first-degree conspiracy to commit robbery in connection with an armored truck robbery at the Walmart where the defendant's live-in girlfriend was employed. The defendant was convicted of all charges, and he subsequently appealed, claiming, inter alia, that he had been denied a fair trial due to prosecutorial misconduct in closing argument.

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    Topics: criminal, guilt beyond reasonable doubt, prosecutorial misconduct, presumption of innocence

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