In April, we wrote about an FAC member currently exiled from his home country because of International Megan’s Law.
One of our members, who has a decades-old conviction, for which he got probation, left the country 17 years ago and hasn’t come back. He went on to live a good life in this other country, established a business, got married and had three children. In October, his mother fell gravely ill and he returned to see her. When he flew into the country (another state) he did what he was supposed to do and registered his one-week stay, letting them know he would be going home on November 7th.
Our country sent a “green notice” to the country he now (and for the past 17 years) lives, warning them of his arrival, flight information and registration flyer. Not surprisingly, the authorities were waiting for him and upon arrival he was immediately turned back. Unwilling to step foot in the US again, he’s currently exiled in a third country, unwilling to be subjected to a lifetime of persecution in the US and unable to return home to his family. He desperately misses them and they miss him.
The state he visited was Illinois and his presence on their registry is what precluded his return to his family.
Just several hours ago, attorney Ron Kleiner, who appeared pro hac vice in Illinois, argued a petition to have this individual removed from their State’s registry, The court granted his petition, finding that the individual’s continued presence on the Illinois registry was a grossly disproportionate punishment for the crime, served no benefit to the people of Illinois (as he is no longer there) and ordered his immediate removal from their registry!
This is a significant win, a tremendous relief to the individual who can now be re-united with his family and hope for those who are listed on a registry in a State they no longer live!
Can someone site this case? I have searched all over the interwebs and can’t find anything. I would love to see the actual court case of this as-applied challenge for myself and not just the articles and comments describing how great this was. Thank you.
COME TO FLORIDA ON VACATION AND LEAVE A LIFETIME REGISTERED SEX OFFENDER
A registered individual goes to Florida on vacation, does the right thing and registers with the Sheriffs office in the county he is vacationing presuming he’ll only be on the registry during the time he is in Florida. WRONG!
Although he is only required to register in his home State for 10 years and eventually is removed at the end of 10 years, he will be on the Florida sex offender registry for life! That’s because Florida, to inflate their registry count, keeps people on its public sex offender registry after they returned to their home state, moved out of Florida, were deported or even died!
The purpose of “Megan’s Law” is to inform the public of “dangerous” people in their communities. But what purpose does Florida’s registry serve when the individual is no longer in the community and no longer in the state? Only to shame for life!
Worse, Florida is perhaps the only state that allows its registry to be indexed by search engines. Meaning; if you Google your name, your sex offender flyer comes right up. As harmful as this is for registrants in Florida, it’s particularly harmful and unnecessary for a registrant who is no longer in the state, who is not on a publicly indexed registry in their state or who has been removed from the registry in their home state.
Less than half the people on the Florida sex offender registry are living in Florida communities. Less than half!
Individuals on the Florida registry who are no longer in Florida, coordinated in conjunction with the Florida Action Committee, are looking to bring a lawsuit against the State seeking their removal from the Florida registry. If anyone is interested in participating or contributing to the challenge, please contact [email protected].
Warg, Agreed, Florida shows its punitive registry, when it refuses to remove dead people, vacationers, and people who no longer live in the state. If we could fund this case, and win , Florida would lose 1/2 the money it receives. The best way to hurt Florida, is in the pocketbook. I wonder how different the Florida registry will look, and how lawmakers will treat it, when the funding starts to dry up. Lets face it , follow the money is what’s it all been about for Florida..
Susan, I totally agree with you. This challenge would help everyone in Florida and out of state people WE ALL really need to get this challenge funded.
As a non Florida resident I am furious as all non Floridains should be . There stealing Federal money that my federal taxes are going for and falsely cooking the books to get it . Fraud ! fraud ! Fraud!
NY does this as well, but their site doesn’t pop up immediately when I search my name, instead there are a few sites similar to the mugshot sites.
I haven’t lived in the US for almost two years and they refuse to remove me on the grounds of the Doe v O’Donnell ruling even though my original offense occurred in another state which would fall under the decision of Richard which had the same outcome as this Illinois case.
Hopefully something comes of this as I don’t want the same to happen to me and be separated from my family and life
Roe* not Richard
I had a 8 yr sentence for sex abuse in Texas and they making me register for life . This happen 37yrs ago .
There are two ways to send donations for the OUT OF STATE LAWSUIT please send check to Ron Kliener directly at 905 SW 9th terrace. Fort Lauderdale FL, 33315 Note: Please send signature required.
If it’s a credit card call Ron Kliener directly to give payment… (954)540-0170
Option b) is to go to the FAC website under Donate click on Out of State Challenge. Make sure you choose the Out of State Challenge, so the money gets to the appropriate Challenge.
If you want to live a peaceful well rounded life after probation, it appears the only way you can is to leave the state. The suit Ron Kliener is bringing may not help you now, but it may help you later to escape Florida, and not have to deal with State and city restrictions.. I was sadden when it was decided that we ( all SO’s and loved ones,) were separated, not to be one group, but as those in Florida and those outside. I believe Ron Kliener can win this suit and it would help all in the long run. I have looked several times, trying to find the funding graphic for this suit, never could find it..
Would love a one way exit visa out of this place to go somewhere one could live like a human being instead of like a tagged animal released back into the wild Just a thought
I’ll be right behind you and I won’t be surprised if there is a huge exodus of people right behind us as well.
That is the whole plan behind the scheme ( really scam ) to force sex offenders to leave the state but continue to collect federal money as if they were still Florida residents . The federal government should help finance the law suit and sue the state for fraud.
Great news !! a nice solid jab at IML. Keep them coming!…
Would be nice to get a devastating uppercut for the K.O. lol
Congrads to Ron Kleiner for the win! FAC is very fortunate to have Mr. Kleiner on board. He’s a great Attorney and one of the few that really care about what he does, and is not just in it for the money, as most Attorney’s are, unfortunately. He’s also very honest and tells it the way it is, which is also rare among Attorneys.
I am out of state sex offender with a conviction from Florida. I have in the past made a donation to F.A.C for the out of state challenge but In this state of AZ I have 105 heat and my monies go to electric bills for a few months till it cools down. I do not see anything passive about F.A.C How many non-profit businesses are fighting on behalf of a sex offender’s rights?
It seems to me like it should be illegal for states to register out of state visitors who are outside of their Federal SORNA obligation to register which begins at time of sentencing. States have reciprocal agreements for other administrative things like concealed carry and driver’s licenses, presumably because the facts of that licensure are unique to each state and states have no authority to pass laws for people who aren’t physically within them.
So for example, if you were convicted of Possession of child pornography, your SORNA registration period would be ten years from your sentencing date. If you received ten years probation then your national obligation to register ended the same day your probation expired. If you traveled to another state after that period then the federal government would not recognize you as a Sex Offender any longer even though your home state registers you for life.
The same thing goes for the International Meagan’s law, if I’m convicted in Texas of possession of child pornography, I can deregister ten years after my sentence ends. If I booked a flight to England, I’d have no notification requirement because I’d no longer be registered by the state and my federal obligation ended a whole ten years prior. Now if instead I went to Florida after I deregistered in Texas to visit my parents for two weeks before I flew to England I’d have to register in Florida and notify them of international travel which means there would be a Constable waiting for me at Heathrow with an Interpol green notice to send me home.
Am I more of a risk because I flew to England from Florida than if I flew from Texas?
Mine was a federal. How does the state have justistiction on cjanging my sentence? Probation and time on the nys registry for the tier one minimum and no piblic access. Come here to fla and this happens. Life…. so i decided to stay. Might as well as my life is ruined
If Registries are indeed – as lawmakers endlessly reiterate – entirely intended for Public Safety purposes and not for punishment, then how does any State justify keeping a registrant on their list if that individual no longer resides in that State and is, therefore, in no way a threat to the citizens of that State in which he/she no longer resides!!! Being retained on that State’s registry can ONLY be interpreted as punishment*!
*or as law enforcement being too lazy to remove the person from the list.
Here’s the thing…this AMAZING attorney is on the case and wins for this individual in another state and YET – even though he is based in Miami…AND we are trying to raise the FUNDS for him to take the same fight for US to court, this article written by FAC doesn’t mention that fact at all – don’t you think it appropriate to do so?????!!!!
My mind is BLOWN at the passivity of FAC concerning this out-of-state challenge, it’s almost like they want to keep it a secret. Sure a tiny thermometer at the bottom of the front page that few notice but this fact should be mentioned over and over in THIS VERY ARTICLE.
Not only to give those of us being held virtual hostage by the state of Florida some HOPE – BUT just as importantly to let people reading this article and this significant win the information about the fight we are trying to get funded in Florida RIGHT NOW!!!
Passivity of FAC? We’re not manufacturing goods for sale here and using the proceeds to fund lawsuits! We rely on individuals to donate to help fund these lawsuits. We’ve been promoting it for months and are only 16% funded.
9 out of 10 FAC members are still in Florida and would not benefit from the “out of state” lawsuit, so it’s up to the ones that will benefit to find a way to fund it.
The plaintiff in this IL case paid his attorney (the same attorney we referred to him, which is the same attorney we picked for the out of state challenge) out of pocket, had his case heard and won! FAC’s legal worked with Mr. Kleiner pro bono. You can’t ask for more than that and you can’t suggest FAC is ‘passive’
Anyone who wants to check the status on funding or donate to the cause, can do so here: https://floridaactioncommittee.org/donations/
” We rely on individuals to donate to help fund these lawsuits. We’ve been promoting it for months and are only 16% funded. ”
and that’s all you really need to say and all we really need to know, which has been abundantly clear and obvious since the beginning of FAC, but some people get bend out of shape when it’s not repeated over and over and over which in fact becomes redundant.
Thank you for everything you do FAC. I’m grateful there is a place we can come to and inform ourselves and participate when we can.
I do understand the frustration that you feel, believe me, I feel it also, But please don’t accused FAC of being be ” passive” on this fight. Gail and her crew are fighting harder that most of us RSO’s combined, we just all need to get together and start supporting FAC more, even a $1 or $2 per week from every RSO in Florida would go a long way. I have never met Gail, but, I have come to know here through this site and feel she is very passionate about this cause. FAC IS fighting for us, and they are only one of a few doing so. It’s ok to be irritated and upset,but don’t attack the ones who are fighting for us when things don’t go our way, use that energy and emotion to support those who truly on the front lines of this fight, save the anger, bewilderment and disappointment for those who pass these ” feel good” laws and spew hatred and fear mongering to the uninformed media and citizens.
I for one would like to thank Gail and FAC. it’s great to finally have a voice.
” it’s almost like they want to keep it a secret. ”
If they wanted to keep it a secret, they wouldn’t of bother to post your post saying so and then replying to you. I think you’re over analyzing it too much. Relax.
If we’re under funded, I don’t think it’s because of poor promotion. People just don’t have money and can barely pay for the necessities.
I wish I can donate everything I have, but I truly can’t right now. I’m writing this borrowing the internet ISP of a close neighbor of mine and using a friend’s laptop for the weekend ( just to see what’s going on with the laws here) while figuring out which coupons to use so I can eat decently tonight. If not, it’s toasted bread and orange juice again.
Congratulations to Ron Kleiner!
I’m sure he’ll do a fantastic job for the out of state challenge
when the funds are raised.
This is exactly what the OUT OF STATE CHALLENGE LAWSUIT is all about. Donate any amount and get this ball rolling. This suit will help everyone in the long run. Ron Kliener the Attorney who just argued and won in Illinois is the Attorney on this case.
That’s great news for HIM. but it’s a small win for those of us in Illinois not intending to travel. The only thing that will help us is SCOTUS to come into this national dispute BIG time and rule for strict scrutiny on these unconstitutional laws.
No one who is not a threat should be on the registry. If we want to identify anyone who might be a threat then all American citizens should be on a registry…starting with the politicians…since no one knows what resides in the ‘heart of man’. There is more to the definition of “threat” than sex. I have a friend who is fearful of going to the local Walmart…not because she is afraid of a sexual assault but because of armed car jacking. How has this nation been allowed to sink into such depths as to make all citizens fearful of each other?
Is this not one more court determination that the registry is in actuality punishment! As it certainly is .
This is a big deal. My family resides in IL near Chicago and I am here in FL. Their current law is, I can visit for 3 days after which I have to register and be upgraded to a Predator! My crime was 12 years ago and victimless. Both my parents are disabled and I would like to visit longer than 48 hours. I am hoping this ruling, though not addressing that exactly, provides proof positive that the registration requirements for travel and visitation for non-residental RSOs is too punitive and needs to be changed.
What it means (potentially) is that you WILL have to remain on the registry while there, but can be removed after.
I’m in a similar boat NY keeps me on their registry even though my original offense occurred in another state and I no longer live in the US with no plans to return. They informed me that because of this I still have to report to them of any changes in housing etc, listed on the registry as well as send them an updated picture every three years.
They ignored my lawyer’s petition completely. If possible it would be great if someone were able to help in my matter as I have not committed another crime since my offense 11 years ago. And this was the only offense on my record.