Wednesday, January 18th, 2017

BIA (unpub.) on Alford Plea: Matter of Fraczek

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"Where an alien was convicted by means of a plea, an Immigration Judge conducting a modified categorical inquiry is "generally limited to examining the statutory definition, charging document, written plea agreement, transcript of plea colloquy, and any explicit factual finding by the trial judge to which the defendant assented" or which was "confirmed by the defendant." Shepard v. United States, 544 U.S. 13, 16, 26 (2005). The record reflects that the respondent pied guilty pursuant to North Carolina v. Alford, 400 U.S. 25 (1970), which permits a defendant to plead guilty without a specific admission to facts required to support a conviction (I.J. at 3; Exh. 5 at 5). In accepting the respondent's plea, the state judge summarized the prosecutor's recitation of the facts, but it is not clear that this recitation served as the factual basis for the respondent's conviction (Exh. 5 at 3, 5). The judge acknowledged that the respondent did not necessarily