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Immigration Status Allowed To Factor Into Criminal Sentencing In Arizona

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A three judge-panel ruled that immigration status can be factored into a criminals sentencing. It makes sense to me. Being here illegally is a crime -- no matter what some ignorant people would have you believe -- and shows prior history of breaking the law and should be allowed to factor into length of a sentence.

Arizona Daily Star

Judges are free to impose harsher sentences on criminals who are in this country illegally, the Arizona Court of Appeals ruled Friday.

In a unanimous decision, the three-judge panel rejected arguments by the attorney for Andres C. Alire, a 46-year-old Mexican national, that his immigration status is irrelevant to his punishment. Alire was convicted of driving under the influence in Pima County.


Court records show that Alire was convicted of aggravated driving while intoxicated. Under Arizona law, the offense, a Class 4 felony, normally would carry a sentence of 2.5 years in state prison.

But Pima County Superior Court Judge Clark Munger said there were "aggravating circumstances" that merited nearly doubling that, to 4.5 years behind bars. Munger listed Alire's prior felony conviction, his degree of intoxication and the fact that he had fled before the trial.

At sentencing, however, Munger said that "apparently, Mr. Alire feels that what he is here to do is come to the United States illegally, drive drunk and endanger the citizens of this country through his intoxication repeatedly and making his living distributing 50 kilograms or more of marijuana."


"Entering the United States without valid immigration status is a violation of the laws of this country," Eckerstrom wrote. He said state law allows a sentencing judge to consider "any other factor that the court deems appropriate to the ends of justice."

Tipped by: The Tar Pit who also points out that the main opposition to this decision, State Rep. Ben Miranda, D-Phoenix is also the sponsor of an illegal alien drivers license ballot measure in Arizona and has publicly stated that Proposition 200 was solely based as a racist law put forth by racist people. I guess that means the 47% of Hispanics that voted for the Proposition are self-hating racists.

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Posted by Digger on February 1, 2005 02:15 AM (Permalink)

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