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Law Ofﬁces of Chua Tinsay & Vegawww.ctvattys.com
by Atty. Jean Tinsay, Esq.
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(Continued on page 4)
by: Jean S. Tinsay, Esq., Chua Tinsay
Vega Law Ofces | SAN DIEGO-SAN
FRANCISCO-MANILA, 7/27/2013Jen was 10 years old when her parents brought her to the United States. Whenshe was about to graduate high school
and lling out her college applications,she was shocked and horried to learn
from parents that they were in the Unit-ed States illegally. She put aside her dreams of going to college and helped
her parents clean houses and ofces.
She met and fell in love with Jerry oneof their workers and they eventuallygot married. Like Jen, Jerry was also brought here from Mexico as a child.When Deferred Action for Child-hood Arrivals (“DACA”) came out lastyear, allowing certain individuals whocame to the United States as children torequest for deferred action, Jerry appliedand his DACA request was granted.Jenny, however, has not submitted aDACA application up to now. Severalyears ago, in a heated argument withJerry, the neighbors called the police totheir apartment. When the police came,they noticed scratch marks on both of Jerry’s arms. Jenny was charged withdomestic violence. Fortunately, for her the charges were reduced and she waseventually convicted with disturbing the peace, a misdemeanor. She is afraidthat her domestic violence charge andcriminal conviction for disturbing the peace would make her ineligible for DACA.DACA provides a much welcome andneeded relief to thousands of individu-als who were brought here to the UnitedStates as children. If found eligible for DACA, the individual is granted work authorizations allowing them to legallywork in the United States, and can thenobtain a Social Security number and adriver’s license. Most importantly eligi- bility under DACA grants the individual“authorized stay” in the United States.What that means is that the individualwho is covered by DACA is not deport-able.One of the key eligibility requirementsto qualify for DACA is the individualmust not have been convicted of a
felony, signicant misdemeanor, or 3 or more “non-signicant misdemeanors”
occurring on different dates and aris-ing out of different acts, omissions, or schemes of misconduct, and do not oth-erwise pose a threat to national securityor public safety.For purposes of DACA, the federal
criminal classication governs in deter-
mining whether an offense is a felonyor a misdemeanor. A “felony” is an of-fense punishable by a potential sentenceof more than 1 year. A misdemeanor isan offense punishable by a potential sen-tence of more than 5 days but not more
than a year. A “signicant misdemean-
or” for purposes of the DACA includes
a misdemeanor as dened by federal law
and for which the maximum term of im- prisonment authorized is 1 year or less but greater than 5 days and regardless of the sentence imposed, involves burglary,domestic violence, sexual abuse or exploitation, unlawful possession or use
of a rearm, driving under the inuence,and drug distribution or trafcking. A“signicant misdemeanor” may also in-
clude any other misdemeanor for whichthe individual was sentenced for morethan 90 days.In Jen’s case, while she was chargedwith a crime of domestic violence, shewas convicted of the offence of disturb-ing the peace, a misdemeanor. Whatdetermines eligibility is not the criminalcharge, but the criminal conviction.
Consequences of Criminal Con- victions on DACA Applications
Had Jen been convicted of a domesticviolence crime, she will not likely beeligible for DACA since that conviction
would be construed as a “signicant
misdemeanor.” However, Jen wasconvicted of disturbing the peace, a mis-demeanor. For DACA purposes, Jen’s
conviction is for a “non-signicant mis-demeanor.” The term “non-signicant
misdemeanor” includes any misdemean-or punishable by imprisonment of morethan 5 days but not more than a year that
is not identied per se as a “signicant
misdemeanor.”While Jen does not appear to beineligible to apply under DACA, keep inmind that DACA is a type of prosecuto-rial discretion and each DACA requestwill be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. It would be best for Jen to consult
an immigration lawyer before she les
her DACA application.Jean S. Tinsay is a partner in the LawFirm of Chua Tinsay and Vega (CTV)
- a full service law rm with ofces in
San Francisco, San Diego, Sacramentoand Manila. The information presentedin this article is for general informa-tion only and is not, nor intended to be,formal legal advice nor the formation of an attorney-client relationship. Call or e-mail CTV for an in-person or phoneconsultation to discuss your particular situation and/or how their services may be retained at (415) 495-8088; firstname.lastname@example.org.A POINT OF AWARENESS By Pre-ciosa S. Soliven (The Philippine Star) |4/14/2013 -- (Part I)The media and Malacañang have gen-erally focused on the negative aspectsof the Sabah story. For more than twoweeks, our local dailies and televisionhave been reporting President Benigno“P-Noy” Aquino III’s frustration on therefusal of Sulu Sultan Jamalul KiramIII to make his people, who have settledin Lahad Datu, their real “homeland,”to return back to Sulu. People are alsowondering why President Aquino, thehighest authority in the Philippines,does not help negotiate a fair settlement between the Sulu Sultanate and theMalaysian government, whose regular payment of a paltry sum to rent Sabah
signies that true ownership belongs
to the Sulu Sultanate. Instead, he hastreated Sulu Sultan Jamalul Kiram IIIlike a child, “Do as I tell you. Comehome or else...” P-Noy was only 2 yearsold when President Diosdado Macapa-
gal led the Philippine claim to NorthBorneo on June 22, 1962.
The better road to peace . . .
Western scientists have conrmed that
in ancient times North Borneo and thePhilippines, connected by land-bridgehave been considered as one country.Philippine STAR columnist AmyPamintuan quotes the website of the“Royal Hashemite Sultan of Sulu (and North Borneo / Sabah),” Malaysiashould either increase its rent for Sabahor return the land to the sultanate.“They’re not talking peanuts. The
amount listed is $1,500 or P77,445.36
as current annual rental for 73,711square kilometers of land rich in naturalresources. Considering that Sabah con-tributes $30 billion annually to Malay-sian GDP, according to the sultanate, therent should be 10 to 12 percent of the
amount, or $3-3.6 billion a year.
“Another proposed option is a jointadministration of Sabah by the sultanateand Kuala Lumpur, with all earningsto be split: 50 percent will go to Sulufor development projects such as roads,hospitals, schools and public safety fa-cilities, while Sabah and Kuala Lumpur will get 25 percent each.”Mr. President, isn’t this a worthy basis of negotiation that would upliftthe status of our Muslim brothers andtriple the development of Mindanao?Sir, lets choose the BETTER ROAD TOPEACE, than mere talk and signing of treaties?Sen. Salonga recounts the backgroundof the Sabah claim
The following year — 1963 — after President Macapagal led the Sabah
claim, Sen. Lorenzo Sumulong’s privi-lege speech denounced the Philippineclaim but Sen. Jovito Salonga delivereda point by point rebuttal to Sumulong’sspeech.1704 — The Philippines and whatis known today as Borneo used toconstitute a single historical, cultural,economic unit. Authoritative Westernscientists have traced the land bridgesthat connected these two places. The in-habitants of the Philippines and Borneocome from the same racial stock, theyhave the same color, or used to havesimilar customs and traditions. North Borneo, formerly known as Sa- bah, was originally ruled by the Sultanof Brunei in 1704. In gratitude for helpextended to him by the Sultan of Suluin suppressing a revolt, the Sultan of Brunei ceded North Borneo to the SuluSultan.HERE, OUR CLAIM BEGINS. Over the years, the various European coun-tries, including Britain, Spain and the Netherlands acknowledged the Sultanof Sulu as the sovereign ruler of NorthBorneo. They entered into various treatyarrangements with him.Baron de Overbeck and the natural boundaries of Sabah territory“In 1878, a keen Austrian adventurer, by the name of Baron de Overbeck, hav-ing known that the Sultan of Sulu wasfacing a life-and-death struggle withthe Spanish forces in the Sulu Archi- pelago, went to Sulu, took advantage of the situation and persuaded the Sultanof Sulu to lease to him, in consider-ation of a yearly rental of Malayan$5,000 (roughly equivalent to a meager
US$1,600), the territory now in ques-
tion. The contract of lease — and I callit so on the basis of British documentsand records that cannot be disputedhere or abroad — contains a technicaldescription of the territory in terms of natural boundaries, thus:“...all the territories and lands beingtributary to us on the mainland of theisland of Borneo commencing from Pan-dassan River on the northwest coast andextending along the whole east coast asfar as the Sibuco River in the South andcomprising among others the States of Peitan, Sugut, Bangaya, Labuk, Sanda-kan, Kinabatangan, Muniang and all theother territories and states to the south-ward therefore bordering on Darvel Bayand as far as the Sibuco River with allthe islands within 3 marine leagues of the coast.” ( International Law stipulatesthat territories may be indicated bynatural boundaries.)The British North Borneo Company
and 1946 Philippine independence
Overbeck later sold out all his rightsunder the contract to Alfred Dent, anEnglish merchant, who establisheda provisional association and later acompany, known as the British NorthBorneo Co., which assumed all therights and obligations under the 1878contract. This company was awarded aRoyal Charter in 1881. A protest againstthe grant of the charter was lodged bythe Spanish and the Dutch Govern-ments and in reply, the British Govern-
ment claried its position and stated in
unmistakable language that “sovereigntyremains with the Sultan of Sulu” andthat the company was merely an admin-istering authority.
In 1946, the British North Borneo Co.
transferred all its rights and obligationsto the British Crown. The Crown, on
July 10, 1946, just six days after Philip-
pine independence, asserted full sover-eign rights over North Borneo. Shortlythereafter former American Governor General Harrison, then Special Adviser to the Philippine Government on For-eign Affairs denounced the cession order as a unilateral act of violation of legalrights. In 1950, Congressman Macapa-gal, along with Congressmen ArsenioLacson and Arturo Tolentino, sponsoreda resolution urging the formal institutionof the claim to North Borneo. Prolongedstudies were in the meanwhile under-
taken, and in 1962 the House of Rep-
resentatives, in rare unanimity, passeda resolution urging the President of thePhilippines to recover North Borneoconsistent with international law and procedure. Acting on this unanimousresolution and having acquired all therights and interests of the Sultanate of Sulu, the Republic of the Philippines,
through the President, led the claim to
North Borneo.Other basis of the proposition
The historical facts about Sabah Filipinos must know