One story that has been in the national spotlight here and there is the unfortunate death of a soccer referee that was punched by a player. The referee was taken to a hospital after the punch, and in the days that followed, he eventually succumbed to his injuries. It’s a tragic and unfortunate story that is all about mutual respect for other people and displaying good sportsmanship.
However, the story has suddenly obtained an immigration element to it as well. This is because the player that threw the ultimately fatal punch is a Lebanese citizen who legally immigrated to the United States and has been in the U.S for 15 years. As a result of his violent act — which was deemed involuntary manslaughter, which he pleaded guilty to — the man is now a “priority 1” deportation subject.
As “priority 1” it means that the man is at the top of the list of deportation subjects, and that means that the necessary enforcement agencies will use any and all resources necessary to investigate and pursue the matter.
Thought the initial story that brings this topic up is gruesome and tragic, it still illustrates an important point about our immigration system. Even if someone legally enters the country, they can still lose their legal status if they are not outstanding citizens that refrain from illegal activity.
It should go without saying, but anyone who is in the country on a visa and wants to remain, you need to avoid any illegal activity. If the criminal justice system does end up biting you, then you need to consult with an experienced immigration attorney to ensure the immigration side of your case is covered.
Source: mlive.com, “Deportation of soccer player who killed Westland referee with punch under review,” Gus Burns, March 14, 2015