On Veterans Day, I am thankful to all of our Veterans for their service to our country. In particular, I remember my experience representing a Desert Storm Veteran a few years ago. He had been a permanent resident for many years. He had also been convicted of possession of cocaine in 1986. He had turned his life around, and he served our country for many years with very good reviews from his supervising officers. He was honorably discharged when he was diagnosed with prostate cancer. Over 20 years after his conviction, when he applied to renew his greencard, he received a Notice to Appear in Immigration Court for a controlled substance conviction. We successfully persuaded the government to terminate his removal case and applied for citizenship under military naturalization provisions. He became a United States citizen just before Christmas in 2011, and it was one of the most rewarding cases I have been involved in. He was thanked for his service to our country at the conclusion of his naturalization interview and the Immigration Service noted that they would make a special announcement about him at his oath ceremony.
The Fifth Circuit issued a published decision holding that a person seeking to adjust status to Permanent Resident who has committed fraud under INA § 212(a)(6) may not adjust status under § 245(i). The applicants in question were seeking to adjust status to permanent resident based on an approved employment-based petition, but had originally entered the U.S. with visas bearing other people's names. This is considered fraud under INA § 212(a)(6). Thus, while the applicants' time out of status might have been waiver under § 245(i) and an illegal entry would have been waived under § 245(i), the fraud committed when entering the U.S. is a separate matter. If the applicants had also been eligible for fraud waivers under INA § 212(i), they might have been able to adjust status in the United States.