Leftist Los Angeles County DA George Gascón is directing prosecutors to let illegal immigrants under criminal investigation claim the charges could have “adverse immigration consequences” and thus avoid deportation.
The policy recommends that prosecutors examine alternatives to criminal convictions “such as avoiding charging for criminal enhancements, which can significantly increase one’s prison sentence, ‘that would turn an otherwise immigration neutral offense into an immigration damaging one,’” Fox News reported.
“Sources within the L.A. DA’s office say this new directive from George Gascon allows anyone under criminal investigation to contact the DA’s office before a case is filed and notify them that charges could have ‘adverse immigration consequences,’” Fox News reporter William La Jeunesse stated. “And if alternatives exist, DAs are told to pursue those instead.”
Speaking of the deportation of illegal immigrants due to criminal convictions, La Jeunesse stated, “Gascon does not want that to happen, telling his deputies don’t go to court, don’t file charges, plead it down, dismiss, or seek diversion without flagging immigration.”
“All charging determinations shall be undertaken with the goal of avoiding or mitigating adverse immigration consequences,” Gascón’s directive reads.
Tiffany Blackwell, communications director for the DA’s office, informed Fox News Digital, “We’ve consulted with our staff, community stakeholders and immigration experts to craft a comprehensive immigration policy that protects vulnerable victims and prioritizes safety while attempting to avoid overly punitive consequences for the accused. We believe that we have achieved that result.”
Meanwhile, La Jeunesse reported, deputies in Gascón’s office expect multitudinous requests from immigration lawyers, resulting in U.S. citizens facing more serious charges than illegal immigrants.
“That’s saying we’re giving better deals to someone because of their immigration status,” Eric Siddall, vice president of the Association for Deputy District Attorneys of Los Angeles County, told Fox News Digital.
In June, Gascón, whose soft-on-crime policies have been blamed for putting residents at risk, was harshly criticized after a notorious criminal murdered two police officers after he was given probation instead of a jail term in 2020 over an illegal gun charge.
Justin William Flores, on parole at the time of the shooting, made a plea deal whereby he received two years probation and 20 days in jail in 2020 because of Gascón’s policy of not prosecuting three-strike cases. Prior to Gascón’s policy, Flores could have been sent back to prison for a minimum of three years, as he had already served time in prison twice for felony burglary and car theft. Flores had been barred from carrying a gun since 2011.
“Court records also showed at least a dozen other prosecutions, many resolved with no contest pleas and probationary sentences, for charges such as driving with a suspended license, being under the influence of a controlled substance, or resisting arrest,” NBC Los Angeles reported. “Law enforcement sources told the I-Team they believed at least one of the two murdered officers would have recognized Flores on sight and by name.”
Gascón’s office defended the decision of the softer sentence for Flores, stating, “The sentence he received in the firearm case was consistent with case resolutions for this type of offense given his criminal history and the nature of the offense. At the time the court sentenced him, Mr. Flores did not have a documented history of violence,” The Daily Mail reported.