Switch to ADA Accessible Website
Orlando Criminal Lawyer

US Supreme Court to Decide If It Is Illegal to Provide Immigration Advocacy


A criminal case that also involves First Amendment free speech rights argued before the US Supreme Court in late February is an important case that could have severe repercussions for a number of citizens. If the Court rules in favor of the government, it could criminalize a significant amount of speech, ensnaring not only a number of attorneys who advise and represent immigrants, but anyone and everyone who speaks with immigrants and encourages them to stay in the country illegally, including family members, ministers, human rights advocates, and more.

The Case & Question Before The US Supreme Court

The case involves a consultant who was convicted of illegally encouraging and inducing aliens to remain in the US, mail fraud, and tax violations in connection with her business, which involved (fraudulently) advertising that she could help clients obtain green cards even though they were technically ineligible to stay in the US. The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals threw out one out of three of her convictions – encouraging undocumented individuals for staying in the US – finding that the interpretation of the statute that she was charged under was a violation of the First Amendment and the statute itself was far too broad and unconstitutional.

The question before the US Supreme Court is now whether this federal law, which criminalizes encouraging or inducing illegal immigration “for commercial advantage or private financial gain,” is unconstitutional.

Justices Appear to Be Leaning Towards Siding Against Government/In Favor of Free Speech Rights

Based on how the Court justices received the arguments in late February, both the conservative and liberal judges appear to agree with the 9th Circuit, as reflected in the hypotheticals they posed to the US government’s attorney. They included questions about whether a grandmother who tells her illegal granddaughter to stay in the US could be charged with a crime, or a charity that provides assistance to immigrants who are in the country unlawfully, etc. In response to the government’s contention that the law had not been used that way, Justice Sotomayor pointed out that one US citizen was in fact already arrested and prosecuted for informing her housekeeper that if she left the country, she may not be able to come back, and Justice Gorsuch pointed out that given that being in the US illegally is not a crime, encouraging someone to stay in the US illegally should also not be a crime.

If You Have Been Unjustly Charged for Exercising Your Civil Rights, Contact The Baez Law Firm

The Baez Law Firm offers clients the very best legal representation in criminal defense and civil rights throughout Florida in all areas of the law, both federal and state. Nationally recognized and one of the most sought after trial lawyers in the country, Orlando criminal lawyer Jose Baez is known for his commitment to obtaining justice for his clients in complex cases. Contact our office today for immediate assistance and to find out more.






  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn

Miami Office

1200 Brickell Avenue, Suite 1410
Miami, FL 33131
Office: 305-999-5100
Fax: 305-999-5111

Orlando Office

250 N Orange Ave, Suite 750
Orlando, FL 32801
Office: 407-705-2626
Fax: 407-705-2625

Email Us

Fields Marked * Are required

DISCLAIMER: Completing and submitting this form or otherwise merely contacting The Baez Law Firm or any individual at the firm will not establish an attorney/client relationship. Our firm cannot represent you until we determine that there would be no conflict of interest and that we are otherwise able to accept representation of your case. Please do not send any information or documents until a formal attorney/client relationship has been established through an interview with an attorney and you have been given authorization in the form of an engagement letter with The Baez Law Firm. Any information or documents sent via this form or otherwise prior to your receipt of an engagement letter will not be treated as confidences, secrets, or protected information of any nature. Submitting information regarding your potential case will not bar The Baez Law Firm from representing or continuing to represent a person or entity whose interest are adverse to your in condition with your case.

protected by reCAPTCHA Privacy - Terms
Please review the highlighted fields. They are required.
DISCLAIMER: This website contains information about The Baez Law Firm that includes testimonial statements from persons who are familiar with the firm's services. The testimonials shown are not necessarily representative of every person's experience with us. Testimonials from every client are not provided. As no two situations or persons are identical, the facts and circumstances of your situation may differ from those for which testimonials are shown. This website also includes information about some of the past results that we have obtained for our clients. Not all results are provided, and the results shown are not necessarily representative of all results obtained by us. No two situation are exactly alike; every person's situation is unique and the outcome for each person depends on the individual facts.

The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship.
MileMark Media - Practice Growth Solutions

© 2015 - 2024 Baez Law Firm. All rights reserved.
This law firm website and legal marketing are managed by MileMark Media.

Contact Form Tab Contact Form Tab