Three years ago, Allyson McConnell drowned her infant boys and tried to commit suicide. She was convicted of manslaughter, has served her sentence, and is awaiting a decision by the Immigration and Refugee Board to see if she is to remain in Canada or if she will be deported back to Australia. This is according to a new article in the National Post:
This case raises a debate that my fellow lawyers and I have discussed in the past – particularly those of us who are internationally licensed lawyers, such as myself. It would seem that the more popular opinion is to deport those immigrants who commit crimes in Canada. But, on the other hand, there is a minority opinion that says that those immigrants who have completed their criminal sentences in Canada are being punished twice over for their crimes.
To elaborate, the proponents of the deportation option argue that Canada should not tolerate nor should Canada shoulder the cost of housing immigrants who are convicted of crimes. Those who view deportation as double punishment argue that, regardless of a person’s immigration status, everyone who comes before the Canadian Courts should be treated equally – that since citizens do not face deportation in addition to a criminal sentence, nor should immigrants. While this debate is going on in Canada, it is even more heated in the U.S.A., particularly in border States such as Arizona and Texas.
While I realize that this may not be the popular position to take, as a criminal defence lawyer, I lean more toward to the latter argument. But, I genuinely want to know: What side of the debate are you on?