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US Visa, friend with police record. What are the chances?

(16 Posts)
callmeovercautious Sun 13-Jul-08 21:16:41

Any advice or experience?

Friend was caught with a joint about 12 years ago and was fined I think. Friend wants to go to the States but the Visa system seems a bit vague, anyone managed to get a visitors Visa with a conviction on their record?

spicemonster Sun 13-Jul-08 21:18:25

Don't declare the conviction. They will never find out if s/he does that. If they tell the truth they won't be given a visa.

callmeovercautious Sun 13-Jul-08 21:20:19

Really? But what if they check and they get stopped at the airport?

NiceShoes Sun 13-Jul-08 21:25:36

hmmbut get caught lying and definitely wont get visa.ever.sorry but if it was so simple to lie and apparently not get found out wouldn't everyone do it? esp in times of heightened security wouldn't they be esp vigilant

when applying for visa i thought you signed authorisation for authorities to search the police data base

wannaBe Sun 13-Jul-08 21:29:50

my cousin spent 6 months in the states about three years ago. Don't know what he was doing there but he was there for about six months. 12 years ago he did two years for dealing extacy.

And he was allowed in.

Whatever you do, don't lie about it.

NiceShoes Sun 13-Jul-08 21:31:27

All applicants' names are routinely checked against sophisticated government databases for possible criminal or other information that may disqualify them.

Look at USA Visa application Following the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, we made some changes in our laws governing visitor entry and exit.

USA now require additional application forms and security clearances. Visa applications take longer to process.

The consular officer examines the application and supporting documents and data for facts indicating possible ineligibilities, inconsistencies or questions that may require clarification.

spicemonster Sun 13-Jul-08 21:48:03

I have a conviction. I have always lied about it. I lived in the States for 18 months and travelled there on numerous occasions, both pre and post 9/11. There is no transparency over minor drugs offences or there would be a civil liberties outcry.

But he can declare it. I didn't think you could get in but maybe you can as wannabe said.

Personally I decided that the risk of them having access to the entire UK criminal database (including spent convictions) was very much smaller than them turning you away. But obviously each to their own.

TheBlonde Sun 13-Jul-08 21:56:10

wannaBe - did your cousin declare his conviction then?

Califrau Sun 13-Jul-08 22:03:28

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

expatinscotland Sun 13-Jul-08 22:04:42

I would hate to spend time in one of their detention centers with Columbian drug runners whilst I awaited deportation back to the UK.

spicemonster Sun 13-Jul-08 22:07:33

I even spent time in secondary immigration at LAX when they thought I was overstaying my visa and not once did my conviction come up. Do you seriously imagine the US has access to every country's criminal database that they have a visa waiver agreement with? Seriously?!

jojosmaman Sun 13-Jul-08 22:11:19

Dp declared a conviction and has had a visa refused twice now due to a conviction for possession of cannabis 9 years ago. He is thinking of trying again this year, does anyone know what his chances are? The last time he applied was two years ago.

callmeovercautious Mon 14-Jul-08 20:25:28

It now seems he has been told not to bother as they are being particularly tight atm so jojos I suspect your DP may be in the same boat. I think it is sad that a slight error of the ways as a young man can have such an affect on his family later in life. Not the end of the world but try telling an 9 year old he can't see Mickey mouse after all sad

jojosmaman Mon 14-Jul-08 20:34:31

That was my inclination CMOC as our ds is only 17mths so it doesn't make a difference to him but that's really sad for a nine year old. sad

TheMagnificent7 Mon 14-Jul-08 20:38:14

If the conviction is spent under the rehabilitation of offenders act then your friend doesn't have to declare it unless there is an immunity from the act (like if you're applying for a job with kids etc). Can't remember the exact wording in the form on the plane, but it's a visa waiver, rather than a visa that's being applied for. Can't imagine that it wouldn't be spent now, so can't imagine they'd need to declare it.

But, they have awfully big guns. Everywhere. Take in a bit of cheese and it's firing squad time. Probably.

TheMagnificent7 Mon 14-Jul-08 20:44:02

That was a bit flippant, sorry. Just hated all the guns on show last time I was there.

Click here for details of how long you need to declare a conviction.

The US does not have to recognise the Act, but the US Government posted this to help people with convictions or issues they ask about.

Remember kids, just say no.

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