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What is an aggravated felony in Florida?

If convicted of an aggravated felony, an immigrant in Florida and throughout the nation can face some of the most severe punishments possible. A conviction on an aggravated felony charge, either state or federal, can cause someone to be deported and barred from almost all waivers or relief that could stop deportation.

There are some exceptions to that law, but one thing is clear: If you are seeking to become a citizen or get a green card, you don't want to take any chances of having an aggravated felony on your record.

But just what qualifies as an aggravated felony? There are a number of crimes that fit the description, and this is just a partial list. In some cases, these crimes only qualify as an aggravated felony if the prison term exceeds a year:

  • Murder
  • Rape
  • Trafficking in destructive devices, such as grenades and bombs
  • Sexual abuse of a minor
  • Many firearms offenses
  • Money laundering over $10,000
  • Fraud or deceit
  • Child pornography
  • Alien smuggling
  • Witness bribery
  • Burglary
  • Commercial bribery
  • Counterfeiting
  • Drug trafficking
  • Forgery
  • Treason
  • Tax evasion over $10,000
  • Obstruction of justice
  • Crimes relating to national defense
  • Perjury
  • Running a prostitution business
  • Receipt of stolen property
  • Sabotage
  • Theft

A charge is just that: an accusation. And in many cases, being charged with an aggravated felony – and then convicted of it – can lead to serious jail time, but also deportation. That's why if you've been accused of an aggravated felony that you need to have aggressive legal representation. More than your freedom could be at stake.

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