Mr. Zapata's knowledge and experience in the area of criminal defense allows for a thorough representation of clients whose past criminal history may be a barrier for either obtaining or maintaining their lawful immigration status in the United States.
As a criminal defense attorney Mr. Zapata ensures that his clients are properly advised of all of the consequences of accepting a plea offer or taking a case to trial. Mr. Zapata researches, reviews, and analyzes all of the facts and circumstances in the client’s case before recommending any steps to take. He ensures that all of the client’s rights are protected and provides effective representation.
Mr. Zapata understands criminal proceedings can be very overwhelming, and at times, quite intimidating. A first-time defendant will be exposed to numerous unfamiliar actions, including the securing a bail bondsmen, subjected to investigative interviews by the law enforcement agency, and appearances at subsequent court hearings. Mr. Zapata is patient with his client and will take the time necessary to answer all of the client’s questions and guide them through such a difficult time in their life..
Mr. Zapata is dedicated to all his clients. He will advocate vigorously for them, and seek to resolve their criminal matter to the best of his abilities.
Post Conviction Relief
Post-conviction relief is a general term related to appeals of criminal convictions, which may include release, new trial, modification of sentence, and such other relief as may be proper and just. The court may also make supplementary orders to the relief granted, concerning such matters as rearraignment, retrial, custody and release on security.
The term may refer to a law or court rule that allows a collateral challenge to a judgment of conviction which has otherwise become final in the normal appellate review process. Post-conviction relief is governed by federal and state laws, which vary by state, and may be used to preclude state or federal habeas corpus.
Over the years, I have met with scores of non-citizens who entered into criminal plea agreements without being aware of potential immigration consequences. Whether old or recent, a criminal conviction can have devastating effects on one’s immigration status. While consequences such as probation or incarceration may be expected, a non-citizen can sometimes be confronted with a more dire consequence – deportation. If you have an older conviction that may result in deportation or prevents you from obtaining a green card or naturalization, contact our office to discuss whether post-conviction relief is a feasible option.