Today, the Supreme Court issued its decision in Carachuri-Rosendo v. Holder (No. 09-60), which presented the issue of whether a person convicted under state law for simple drug possession (a federal misdemeanor) has been “convicted” of an “aggravated felony” on the theory that he could have been prosecuted for recidivist simple possession (a federal felony), even though there was no charge or finding of a prior conviction in his prosecution for possession.
The Supreme Court announced today that a second or subsequent simple possession offenses are not aggravated felonies under 8 U.S.C. §1101(a)(43) when, as in this case, the state conviction is not based on the fact of a prior conviction.
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