Gov. Jerry Brown PARDONS IMMIGRANT FELONS FACING DEPORTATION
“In California governor Jerry Brown’s endless attempts to drag California to third world nation status, he is now pardoning immigrants convicted of felonies in order to save them from being deported.
The Sacramento Bee reports:
Escalating the state’s showdown with the Trump administration over illegal immigration, California Gov. Jerry Brown used a Christmas holiday tradition to grant pardons Saturday to two men who were on the verge of being deported for committing crimes while in the U.S.
Brown, pairing his state’s combative approach to federal immigration authorities with his belief in the power of redemption, characterized the pardons as acts of mercy.
With the pardons, the reason for applicants’ deportations may be eliminated, said attorney Kevin Lo of Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Asian Law Caucus, which represented some of the men in a recent class-action lawsuit.The pardoned immigrants will still need to ask immigration courts to reopen their cases, he said.
The detentions of felons has focused on specific ethnic groups in past months, including Cambodians and Vietnamese, according to immigration lawyers handling the cases. Cambodia has been reluctant to repatriate former felons, but acquiesced to accepting more after the State Department stopped issuing visas in September to a small group of top Cambodian officials and their families.
Two of Brown’s pardons are Northern California Cambodian men picked up in October in those immigration sweeps, Mony Neth of Modesto and Rottanak Kong of Davis.
Kong and Neth were scheduled to be deported Monday, but a federal judge issued a temporary restraining order last week in the lawsuit filed by Lo’s team, delaying their departure.
Neth, 42, was unexpectedly released from Rio Cosumnes Correctional Center on Friday, said his wife, Cat Khamvongsa, and is back home with his family – albeit with an ankle monitor.
Lo said the pardon only covers the felony charge against Neth, but federal immigration law doesn’t allow the pardon to remove a possibility of being deported on the firearms count.
But California gave Neth another gift in 2014 with Proposition 47, the voter-approved ballot initiative that allowed some felony crimes to be reclassified as misdemeanors. Early this month, a court changed Neth’s firearm count to a lesser charge under those guidelines – another step toward restoring his legal status.
On Saturday, Brown extended a total of 132 pardons and 19 commutations. Since returning to office in 2011, he has handed down a modern-era record 1,059 pardons, along with 37 commutations, far more than the 404 pardons and one commutation he made over his first two terms as governor, from 1975 to 1983.
Brown also commuted the sentence of Candace Lee Fox, 57, of Los Angeles, to 15 years to life. Fox has served 33 years in prison for joining others in a killing and robbery when she was 24 and a single mother working as a manicurist.
Fox had reportedly received a a life sentence after she initially agreed to a plea deal from a prosecutor in open court promising possible parole after 7 1/2 years in exchange for testimony against a fellow assailant.
Inmates may apply to have their sentence reduced or eliminated and must demonstrate exemplary behavior since their conviction. In August, Brown commuted the sentences of nine prisoners convicted over the past three decades primarily of murder or attempted murder.
This is just part of governor Brown’s endless war against Trump, as he’d rather pander to illegal aliens and lose federal funding for such things as disaster aid and law enforcement money than do what is right for actual American citizens.”
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Note: What do we do if our governor is mentally ill, and incapable of acting rationally? What are our options? / CJ