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Travelling to US with a criminal record in the UK

Travel Forums North America Travelling to US with a criminal record in the UK

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121. Posted by Tightrope (Budding Member 29 posts) 4y

It's a disgrace that people who were arrested without charge are not eligible for the visa waver program. 'Innocent until proven guilty' What ever happened to that?

122. Posted by PEGLEG (Budding Member 5 posts) 4y

Hi All,

New to this and just looking for some advice/guidance.

Right...6yrs ago i was convicted of a sexual offence - not rape or anything to do with children however not proud as it was during a drunken night out so totally out of character and totally sorry for my actions. I was convicted and sent to prison for a 33month sentence which was very harsh...even the prosecution questioned that this was a harsh sentence (expecting 12 months) for the crime committed. Normal sentence is anywhere from suspended upto 36 months. The judge wanted to make an example of me. I've never been in trouble before or since this offence.

I've seen so many posts and read them all...and it looks like that I have no choice but that to try my luck on an ESTA and tick NO as I will 100% be turned away if i go down the application through embassy route.

I've been travelling with my wife around asia & europe in recent years with no problems. The only time I have an issue is when I arrive back in the UK through passport control as they always question me as to where I have been & where I live and then i'm allowed back in. Apart from this no real problems.

I'm on the SOR & MAPPA however really interested if anyone out there can help or shed some light on these areas before I embark on a holiday to the US?

123. Posted by Tightrope (Budding Member 29 posts) 4y

You need to get some expert visa advice from a solicitor, who will advise you confidentially. If you're on MAPPA you may also be on VISOR the consolidated database of MAPPA databases, if you are then there will be a risk category for you and if your category is 'low' then you could be considered not to be a threat to the public, which may help your case. you need answers to these questions. The embassy does not always refuse a visa forever, decisions depend on the severity of your past crime, how long ago it was, and even to some extent your demeanour in the visa interview. This again is why a solicitor's advise would be advisable. 6 years ago may not be enough time, and you may be advised to apply again some time in the future. You may be able to speak to the embassy without going into too much personal ID detail in order to try to get some idea of how it might sway for a 'low risk' ex offender. A good immigration solicitor should know what kind of data is shared between countries. You should apply for an ACPO police certificate, it's valid for 6 months, you could get this for yourself without making any interview arrangements with the US embassy, what ever shows up on this certificate is what the embassy will want to know about your arrest history. Once you get the cerificate, it will help you to decide what to do. If you do get the visa, you will be interviewed at the port of entry, the final decision is with the border control officer who interviews. Mind you I fail to see how some one with your past, who made your mistake is a threat to the national security of the USA, but that's America today I guess.

[ Edit: Edited on 04-Mar-2012, at 16:09 by Tightrope ]

124. Posted by PEGLEG (Budding Member 5 posts) 4y

Cheers for the response...i've looked into this and there are certain changes going on in the government so i've been told to get my appeal in and ill be removed from the SOR & MAPPA as my offence is classed as the lowest risk possible. Hopefully all sorted for this year.

125. Posted by big phil (Budding Member 11 posts) 4y

Hi everyone.
Another one here with a criminal record requiring some guidance. I was given an 18 month jail sentence in 2002, i waqnt to take my young children to Disney but i havent got a clue where to start!!!!! Please help!

126. Posted by Al86 (Budding Member 11 posts) 4y

Re:big philmi have just come back from the us embassy and have been declined twice for a tourist visa as I don't have enough ties in the united kingdom.I.e a mortgage and also as I haven't travelled enough,so now in 6weeks my family will fly to america with my 3year old daughter so disney,my advice go to disneyland paris as after paying 140 dollars twice and 200 train fare I still got declined

127. Posted by Tightrope (Budding Member 29 posts) 4y

This is from the Home Office web site

But like the post above says, Disney Land Paris is good, why bother with the USA, too much hassle.

[ Edit: Edited on 08-Mar-2012, at 11:46 by Tightrope ]

128. Posted by big phil (Budding Member 11 posts) 4y

A186. Sorry to hear that mate, We all have different circumstances but i take your point about spending all that money without a guarantee of being granted a visa. Its hard when my family desperately want me to take them but i have to tell them no. I'm going to at least try and go for the visa.

129. Posted by Al86 (Budding Member 11 posts) 4y

Yeah oid give it ago,I mean mine was a reprimand I got when I was 14years old so 11years ago its ridiculous also you will be sat in there for around 3hours

130. Posted by big phil (Budding Member 11 posts) 4y

That seems harsh! Surely the conviction is now 'spent', meaning you do not have to disclose the information? Or am i wrong? What did you have to do to arrange your interview at the us embassy?

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