Dublin Motions to Vacate a Criminal Judgement
It should come as no surprise to people who have entered California’s criminal justice system that prejudicial errors can occur – either by the attorneys handling the matter or by the judge. In addition, there are some situations where new evidence comes to light after a conviction that could prove the innocence of the defendant.
In both these scenarios, you have the right as a convicted defendant to ask a California criminal court for post-conviction relief through a motion to vacate. This can result in the conviction being lifted and the case being reopened – in many instances it can result in a new and better sentence or a dismissed case altogether.
If you believe you were convicted in error, A Dublin motions to vacate a criminal judgment may be able to help. An experienced attorney could work with you to examine the transcripts of your court sessions and determine if a key error of law negatively affected your case. They could also provide legal representation if new evidence is discovered that proves your innocence post-conviction.
The Legal Basis for a Motion to Vacate
Not every criminal defendant can file Dublin motions to vacate a criminal judgment. According to California Penal Code §1473.7, defendants can only file a motion to vacate when:
- The conviction is prejudicially invalid due to a prejudicial error that affected the defendant’s ability to meaningfully understand the adverse immigration consequences of a guilty plea
- New evidence comes to light that requires a reexamination of a conviction as either a matter of law or justice
CA Penal Code §1473.7 also states that a defendant can file this motion only when they have received a notice to appear in immigration court or after a removal order has become final. Essentially the petitioner must be in imminent danger of being removed or deported from the country.
The Benefits of a Motion to Vacate
A successful motion to vacate a criminal judgment in Dublin can have one of two primary goals. The most common beneficial outcome is for the criminal court to throw out the previous conviction, which then results in the defendant being given an opportunity to relitigate the case and be sentenced to an “immigration safe” crime instead. This outcome typically stems from successful motions that argue the defendant was not aware of the consequences of a guilty plea.
The other potential outcome is that the case is dismissed in its entirety. This could occur if changes in the law no longer criminalize the behavior for which the defendant was convicted, or if new evidence is gathered in the case that makes it impossible for the defendant to have committed the crime, or the DA no longer has the information necessary to prosecute the case – this typically occurs in older convictions where witnesses and evidence are no longer available. No matter what a person’s exact goal may be, a dedicated motion to vacate criminal attorney may be able to help achieve it.
Seeking Motions to Vacate a Criminal Judgment in Dublin with an Attorney’s Assistance
The entry of a criminal conviction does not need to follow you for the rest of your life. Especially in situations where you entered a guilty plea without full knowledge of the consequences, you may be able to file Dublin motions to vacate a criminal judgment. In addition, new evidence can be brought forward that indicates that you were not guilty of your alleged crimes, even after a full trial.
In either of these scenarios, if you are facing possible deportation or removal from the United States for a previous conviction, a motion to vacate a criminal judgment under Penal Code 1473.7 may be well within your rights. Contact an attorney today to schedule a consultation about your case.