Traveling Abroad as a Sex Offender
Registered sex offenders may find it difficult to travel abroad, as some countries may deny a sex offender a visa.
Being a registered sex offender can have a lasting negative impact on many aspects of your life, including your career and your reputation. Now, a new federal law also requires registered sex offenders to include information about their status on their passport.
If you have been charged with any type of federal crime, it’s important to speak to a Texas federal criminal defense lawyer right away.
What the New Law Says
Signed by President Obama in February 2016, the new law is known as the International Megan’s Law. Under the new law, there are two types of registered sex offenders who are required to include a mark on their U.S. passport. If you have been convicted of a sex crime involving a minor, or you are required to register as a sex offender in any state or with the National Sex Offender Registry due to a conviction involving a sex offense with a minor, you must comply with the new statute. The identification must be a “visual designation affixed to a conspicuous location” on the passport. The law also prohibits any passport-issuing authority from giving a sex offender a passport unless the mark is included.
Obviously, this new requirement could have an impact on a sex offender’s ability to travel overseas. The goal of the law is to prohibit registered sex offenders from traveling to other countries where so-called “sex tourism” is a thriving industry. According to a 2010 report released by the federal government, at least 4,500 registered sex offenders received passports in 2008. Without an identifying mark on their passport, officials in other countries are unlikely to know that these individuals had been convicted of a sex-related offense in the United States.
The law also establishes a database that allows U.S. officials to notify foreign countries when a registered sex offender is traveling abroad. Additionally, registered sex offenders must notify the appropriate authorities any time they plan to travel overseas.
Now, registered sex offenders may find it difficult to travel abroad, as some countries may deny a sex offender a visa when they attempt to cross the border or go through customs. The law also requires sex offenders to regularly update their information.
Discuss Your Case with a Texas Federal Criminal Defense Lawyer
If you have been charged with a sex-related crime, don’t wait to speak to a lawyer about your case. The consequences of a conviction can linger for years to come, affecting everything from your job and your relationships to where you live and when you can travel. At Broden & Mickelsen, we are Board Certified in Criminal Law and Criminal Appellate Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. Receive a free case evaluation from a Texas federal criminal defense lawyer today by calling 214-720-9552.
Broden & Mickelsen, LLP
2600 State St Dallas, Texas 75204
Main Phone: (214) 720-9552
SOURCE: Broden & Mickelsen