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-   -   Been done to death but very confused. (https://britishexpats.com/forum/us-immigration-citizenship-visas-34/been-done-death-but-very-confused-747753/)

keepyourpeace Feb 7th 2012 8:47 pm

Been done to death but very confused.
 
Okay as I understand it, British citizens can travel to the US under the visa waiver programme? So dont have to apply for a visa. However I at the age of 17 was arrested and given a reprimand for posession of a very small amount of cannabis.

I thought at first Id never be let into the US again but Ive been doing some research and based on this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_...ted_Violations
and this

An alien who is convicted of or who admits to having committed or who
admits committing acts which constitute the essential elements of a minor
drug offense(s) relating to simple possession or use of controlled
substances, i.e., offenses other than those involving trafficking,
importing/exporting, or manufacturing (18 U.S.C.), shall not be considered
ineligible for any visa based solely upon any such conviction or admission if
the acts which are the subject of the conviction or admission occurred while
the alien was under the age of eighteen. Specifically excluded from such U.S. Department of State Foreign Affairs Manual Volume 9 - Visas
9 FAM 40.21(b) Notes Page 2 of 8
treatment, however, are convictions or admissions relating to drug
trafficking, importing/exporting, and manufacturing

So Im confused. Does this mean I have to apply for a visa or can travel under the VWP?

Noorah101 Feb 7th 2012 8:51 pm

Re: Been done to death but very confused.
 

Originally Posted by keepyourpeace (Post 9889325)
Okay as I understand it, British citizens can travel to the US under the visa waiver programme? So dont have to apply for a visa. However I at the age of 17 was arrested and given a reprimand for posession of a very small amount of cannabis.

How long ago was that?
How much exactly was "a very small amount"?

Rene

fatbrit Feb 7th 2012 9:00 pm

Re: Been done to death but very confused.
 

Originally Posted by Noorah101 (Post 9889329)
How long ago was that?
How much exactly was "a very small amount"?

Rene

I think it's irrelevant. The answer to the crime question on ESTA is yes, and this will automatically deny the ESTA. OP needs a B-2 visa application if s/he wishes to visit the US.

paulpur Feb 7th 2012 9:04 pm

Re: Been done to death but very confused.
 
id say that you have to apply for a visa, but may be recommended for a waiver if it was below a certain amount, but since you were arrested for drugs means you are not eligible for vwp

keepyourpeace Feb 7th 2012 9:10 pm

Re: Been done to death but very confused.
 
Hi-

Itll be 3 years ago this summer. And very small is about 1 gram under the 30g of cannabis as specified on the Wikipedia page I linked to.

I thought the ESTA thing was about CIMT which the actual answer is no (Ive read this on various threads on here and on the links given on them!). So would ESTA still be denied?

So given all this, especially as I read somewhere if the crime was committed between ages of 15 and 18 the US don't see it as committing a crime, my ESTA would be denied and I couldn't travel under the VWP so would have to apply for a Visa?

paulpur Feb 7th 2012 9:15 pm

Re: Been done to death but very confused.
 
yeah but the thing is, the question asks about cimt OR controlled substances arrests or convictions

keepyourpeace Feb 7th 2012 9:16 pm

Re: Been done to death but very confused.
 

Originally Posted by paulpur (Post 9889372)
yeah but the thing is, the question asks about cimt OR controlled substances arrests or convictions

Sorry if it seems like im arguing, just from what Ive read, the single posession of a small amount of cannabis doesnt count? Or am I mistaken?

fatbrit Feb 7th 2012 9:21 pm

Re: Been done to death but very confused.
 

Originally Posted by keepyourpeace (Post 9889375)
Sorry if it seems like im arguing, just from what Ive read, the single posession of a small amount of cannabis doesnt count? Or am I mistaken?

Have you ever been arrested for drugs?
The answer is yes.
You need a B-2.

Will you get a B2 if the offence is only 3 years old?
I doubt it. But you can try.

keepyourpeace Feb 7th 2012 9:30 pm

Re: Been done to death but very confused.
 
Still confused, because ive read (check the wiki page) that single posession offence is allowable (cant find other links to where I read it). Should I phone the embassy and ask?

fatbrit Feb 7th 2012 9:38 pm

Re: Been done to death but very confused.
 

Originally Posted by keepyourpeace (Post 9889404)
Still confused, because ive read (check the wiki page) that single posession offence is allowable (cant find other links to where I read it). Should I phone the embassy and ask?

If you really, really want to go to the US, you should follow the instructions on the embassy's website for applying for a B2 w.r.t. a criminal offence. Be prepared to spend a few hundred squid or more, and don't be surprised if they send you for a medical with a drug screen. If it gets denied, wait 5 years and try again.

Or chose another place in this great world for your vacation.

materialcontroller Feb 7th 2012 9:39 pm

Re: Been done to death but very confused.
 

Originally Posted by keepyourpeace (Post 9889404)
Still confused, because ive read (check the wiki page) that single posession offence is allowable (cant find other links to where I read it). Should I phone the embassy and ask?

Even if the single petty offense exception applied in this case, and I'm not sure it does, it isn't something you can adjudicate for yourself. You have to answer the ESTA question truthfully and, if not authorised, apply for a B2 visa; during which process the US authorities will decide whether or not to apply the provisions of the petty offense exception.

keepyourpeace Feb 7th 2012 9:54 pm

Re: Been done to death but very confused.
 
Okay- so if I ring up the embassy they could say, you were 17 (a juvenile in the US's eyes), it was a very small amount, you can travel under VWP.
Or see what ESTA says.
And then apply for a visa?

materialcontroller Feb 7th 2012 10:01 pm

Re: Been done to death but very confused.
 

Originally Posted by keepyourpeace (Post 9889463)
Okay- so if I ring up the embassy they could say, you were 17 (a juvenile in the US's eyes), it was a very small amount, you can travel under VWP.
Or see what ESTA says.
And then apply for a visa?

I can already tell you what the embassy hotline staff will say... "You need to apply for a visa". Why spend £1.23 a min to be told that?

The ESTA question says:

"Have you ever been arrested or convicted for an offense or crime involving moral turpitude or a violation related to a controlled substance; or have been arrested or convicted for two or more offenses for which the aggregate sentence to confinement was five years or more; or have been a controlled substance trafficker; or are you seeking entry to engage in criminal or immoral activities?"

Given what you've told us so far, you need to answer YES to this question. Which more than likely will result in your ESTA not being authorised, and you'll need to apply for a visa.

katiekat Feb 7th 2012 10:01 pm

Re: Been done to death but very confused.
 
The individuals at the embassy are under no obligation to give you factual or accurate information. You can try it and take their advice but you have no guarantee that they're telling you the truth.

Noorah101 Feb 7th 2012 10:04 pm

Re: Been done to death but very confused.
 

Originally Posted by keepyourpeace (Post 9889463)
Okay- so if I ring up the embassy they could say, you were 17 (a juvenile in the US's eyes), it was a very small amount, you can travel under VWP.
Or see what ESTA says.
And then apply for a visa?

Don't call the embassy. They are not the ones who can help you with this. If you need a professional opinion, ONLY consult with a qualified immigration attorney. Why? Because it's not the embassy's job to tell you anything ahead of time, until you are face to face with them at your visa interview. Even if they DO talk to you ahead of time, and they give you the wrong information, and you act on it, THEY are not the ones held responsible, and you will pay the price for it.

If you want to try ESTA, go for it. Check "yes" to the "have you ever been arrested for a controlled substance", and see what happens. If ESTA is denied, then you can apply for a B-2.

Rene

DavidLemon Feb 7th 2012 10:06 pm

Re: Been done to death but very confused.
 

Originally Posted by keepyourpeace (Post 9889463)
Okay- so if I ring up the embassy they could say, you were 17 (a juvenile in the US's eyes), it was a very small amount, you can travel under VWP.
Or see what ESTA says.
And then apply for a visa?

NO

You dont need to ring them, and in the event you chose to ignore info here and do it anyway, they will most likely tell you you need a visa. They get questions like this all the time and tend to default their answers to B2 required once they here drug related incidents.

ESTA asks a simple question and does not clarify if you were under or over 18. The answer to the question being asked is YES. You can not choose to ignore the past because you were a minor, and neither will the US. They do not see drug related issues as acceptable in any manner.

As everyone else here has said, if you choose to go the ESTA route you will have to be honest and answer the questions. Expect a denial, book interview for B2 and plead your case to a person.

crg Feb 7th 2012 10:22 pm

Re: Been done to death but very confused.
 
The single petty offense exception does not apply to drug convictions for nonimmigrant visitors. It applies to CIMT, but not drugs.

The ESTA/VWP asks about controlled substance arrests. The answer is apparently "YES".

It is unlikely that the person would need a waiver because it was as a juvenile, but the recent drug use may be of concern and lead to other questions.

fatbrit Feb 7th 2012 10:36 pm

Re: Been done to death but very confused.
 

Originally Posted by Noorah101 (Post 9889486)
If you want to try ESTA, go for it. Check "yes" to the "have you ever been arrested for a controlled substance", and see what happens. If ESTA is denied, then you can apply for a B-2.

Should read WHEN the ESTA is denied rather than if.

You don't need a denied ESTA to apply for a B2, and you'll save yourself a few squid.

ian-mstm Feb 8th 2012 1:38 am

Re: Been done to death but very confused.
 

Originally Posted by keepyourpeace (Post 9889404)
Still confused, because ive read (check the wiki page) that single posession offence is allowable (cant find other links to where I read it).

Y'know what... I'm just like you! I always go to Wikipedia when seeking important and, possibly, life-altering information. I believe Wikipedia is the perfect defense against the Dark Forces of US Immigration.

Go for it.

Ian

Boiler Feb 8th 2012 9:41 pm

Re: Been done to death but very confused.
 
And if does not say what you want it to say you can change it!


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