Chinese national challenges U.S. deportation for drug trafficking

    ChinaThis case involves a Chinese national who is currently being detained in the United States based on two drug trafficking convictions. The first conviction occurred in 2006 for possession of cocaine with intent to sell, for which he was sentenced to one year in a county jail and given a five-year probation. At the same time, in the same case, he was also convicted of cultivating marijuana, maintaining a place for sale of a controlled substance and conspiracy. The sentences for both convictions were set to run concurrently. Five years later, in 2011, he was once again convicted of cultivation of marijuana, conspiracy, and maintaining a place for sale of controlled substances. He was sentenced to eight months in jail and given a five-year probation. Under federal immigration law, both offenses are trafficking offenses and both are deemed aggravated felonies. Because of this, the client is subject to immediate and almost guaranteed deportation. Assuming that judgments are reached in a fair and equitable manner, the most likely applicable exception to deportation in this type of case is a claim under the Hague Convention against Torture. This requires the client to prove to immigration officials that if he was to be returned to China, it is more likely than not that he will be tortured by the Chinese government.

    Question(s) For Expert Witness

    • 1. Will China know that he has been deported for drug trafficking and will this impact the well-being of the client when he enters China?
    • 2. In view of China's hard line policies on drugs, their rather unfair criminal justice system and their view that the U.S. is sending back drug traffickers, what will the government likely do to an individual like this?

    Expert Witness Response E-006728

    This extremely qualified, Harvard-educated professor of law has instructed both law school and undergraduate students on Chinese law policy for 30 years, and has both lectured and published extensively on the topic.

    Given the realities of the current technological age, it is entirely likely that China will know that the United States deported this client for drug trafficking. According to the Drug Policy Alliance, the Chinese government strictly follows a zero-tolerance policy when it comes to drug use and sale. By most conservative estimates, China executes as many as 15,000 people every year for drug offenses. Just last year, China convicted and executed a Filipina drug mule. Based on this knowledge, it is very possible that the client may be sentenced to death under Chinese law.

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