I'm travelling to the US in march 2013, but was arrested in 2005, for battery 242pc. The case was dismissed from court, so no conviction or charge.
For the visa waiver documentation I have to answer 'yes' or 'no' to whether I've been arrested for a crime involving moral turpitude. Not sure if the 242pc counts.
Any help greatly appreciated as I've found contradicting information online.
DUI / DWI Attorney
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Battery sure sound like a CIMT to me.
For confirmation, go ahead and pay an attorney to review the records.
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Criminal Defense Attorney
According to the Immigrant Legal Resource Center;
"A crime involving moral turpitude (“CIMT”) has been vaguely defined as a depraved or immoral act, or a violation of the basic duties owed to fellow man, or recently as a “reprehensible act” with a mens rea of at least recklessness. Matter of Silva-Trevino, 24 I&N Dec. 687 (AG 2008). Traditionally a CIMT involves intent to commit fraud, commit theft with intent to permanently deprive the owner, or inflict great bodily harm, as well as some reckless or malicious offenses and some offenses with lewd intent."
My reading of this language is that a 242 doesn't involve a CIMT. I recommend an immigration specialist to verify this.
Simple battery under Penal Code § 242 is not likely to involve moral turpitude.
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Criminal Defense Attorney
A battery under California Penal Code section 242 may rise to a crime involving moral turpitude if the victim is among a protected class that the law deems particularly vulnerable or particularly worthy of extra protection or if the offense led to particularly-egregious harm. The easiest examples of protected classes are in Penal Code section 243: law enforcement officers, teachers, bus drivers, and those with whom the arrested party has a domestic relationship or shares blood. The easiest example of particularly-egregious harm is 243(d): "when serious bodily injury is inflicted..."