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United States v. Lisle

United States District Court, D. Maine

June 27, 2019

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
v.
DAYMARY LISLE, Defendant

          ORDER FOLLOWING REMAND

          JON D. LEVY CHIEF U.S. DISTRICT JUDGE

         Daymary Lisle, a native of Curaçao, a Dutch island in the Caribbean, is a naturalized United States citizen. Lisle pleaded guilty to one count of unlawfully procuring naturalization (18 U.S.C.A. § 1425 (West 2019)) and one count of false statement (18 U.S.C.A. § 1001 (West 2019)). On September 20, 2018, she was sentenced to two years of probation based on her guilty plea. See ECF No. 56. Later that day, the Government filed a motion to revoke Lisle's citizenship under 8 U.S.C.A. § 1451(e) (West 2019) (the “Motion to Revoke”). See ECF No. 61. Section 1451(e) provides for the mandatory revocation of a person's naturalization upon being convicted of violating § 1425. Neither the Government nor Lisle knew at the time Lisle was sentenced that her conviction would result in the automatic and mandatory revocation of her citizenship. The resulting question presented is whether Lisle, who was not informed of this consequence at the time she pleaded guilty, entered a knowing and intelligent guilty plea.

         I. BACKGROUND

         Lisle made her Initial Appearance and entered a plea of not guilty to the charges in this case on October 26, 2017. The only information concerning immigration consequences mentioned during her Initial Appearance was the advice, given by the Court, in accordance with Fed R. Crim. P. 5(d)(1)(F), that if Lisle was not a United States citizen she had the right to consular notification regarding her arrest and charges.

         On April 10, 2018, Lisle appeared before the court and pleaded guilty to two of the three charges in the indictment. Her plea was in keeping with a written plea agreement filed with the Court. See ECF No. 33. The agreement contained Lisle's waiver of the right to appeal her guilty plea and any other aspect of her conviction, as well as from her sentence, if she received a sentence that did not involve imprisonment. The agreement also contained a statement of the immigration consequences of Lisle's guilty plea in Paragraph 7:

Immigration Status. (Use in cases in which removal is a potential consequence of the guilty plea.) Defendant recognizes that pleading guilty may have consequences with respect to her immigration status if she is not a citizen of the United States. The parties agree and understand that the offense(s) to which Defendant is pleading guilty may result in Defendant being removed from the United States. Removal and other immigration consequences are the subject of a separate proceeding, however, and Defendant understands that no one, including her attorney or the district court, can predict to a certainty the effect of her conviction on her immigration status. Defendant nevertheless affirms that she wants to plead guilty regardless of any immigration consequences that her plea may entail, even if the consequence is her automatic removal from the United States.

         ECF No.33 ¶ 7.

         During the Rule 11 colloquy in court, Lisle was informed, pursuant to Fed. R. Crim. P. 11(b)(1)(O), of the citizenship-related consequences the conviction might have:

THE COURT: Ms. Lisle, I am required to advise you that if you are not a United States citizen, by pleading guilty to these crimes you may be removed from the United States, denied citizenship, and denied admission to the United States in the future; do you understand?
LISLE: Yes, Your Honor.

         ECF No. 72 at 9. The colloquy subsequently addressed the immigration consequences of Lisle's conviction as described in Paragraph 7 of the plea agreement:

THE COURT: The agreement also reflects, in paragraph seven, that there might be immigration consequences from your guilty plea, and it could result in your removal from the United States. Also it reflects that removal and other immigration consequences are the subject of a separate proceeding, and that you have acknowledged in this agreement that no one, including your attorney, and including the Court, can predict - predict to any certainty the effect that your conviction will have on your immigration status; do you understand?
LISLE: Yes, Your Honor.
THE COURT: It also says that you nevertheless affirm that you want to plead guilty regardless of any immigration consequences that your plea may entail even if the consequences are your automatic removal from the United States. Do you understand that as well?
LISLE: Yes, Your Honor.
THE COURT: And that is your agreement?
LISLE: Yes, Your Honor.

Id. at 26.

         As previously noted, Lisle's sentencing was held on September 20, 2018.[1] The Court engaged in the following colloquy with Lisle regarding her possible deportation:

THE COURT: Ms. Lisle, as I understand it is your intention to now move to Curacao; is that correct?
[LISLE]: In the future. I mean I brought my kids here to come back we have to - to finish their education, especially the older one that is a senior, and she was raised [here] - most of her life from - from Europe to here, two months she is raised here, and it is a better future for her, and to keep going and grow to be the woman she wants to be, yeah. And - I mean I do have a mother back in the island that's not doing so well, I mean I would love to be able to go. I mean I already have two deaths prior to this month, a couple months, that I wasn't able to attend to their funerals because I can't travel; but in the future, yes, I will love to be able to go back home and visit my family, yeah.
THE COURT: Do you understand that you face the possibility of being deported as a result of this conviction?
LISLE: I understand that, sir, yeah. Yeah. I mean I will take my - like I say, I accept responsibility and I take my punishment; but I wouldn't want them to affect my children.
THE COURT: All right. I just want to be clear that, as indicated in the revised presentence investigation report, this conviction could and perhaps likely will lead ...

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