Ninth Circuit Dishes Out ‘Strong Medicine’ and Invalidates Law That Makes It a Crime to Encourage Illegal Immigration

By Elura Nanos | Law & Crime

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit struck down a portion of a statute Thursday which made it a crime to encourage illegal immigration. A three-judge panel of the appellate court vacated a man’s conviction, ruling that the statute was overbroad and unconstitutional.

Helaman Hansen worked with a group called Americans Helping America Chamber of Commerce (AHA), which encouraged undocumented immigrants to obtain U.S. citizenship through adult adoption. Nearly 500 individuals paid enormous sums of money to the group, and an investigation revealed that Hansen and AHA received more than $1.8 million in revenue from their victims. Contrary to AHA’s promises, adult adoption is not a means of becoming a U.S. citizen.