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International Visitor Arrests 

As “The Theme Park Capital of the World,” the city of Melbourne is a regular destination not only for tourists in other American cities but travelers all over the globe. Unfamiliarity with state and federal laws can occasionally lead to people from other countries unknowingly committing alleged crimes and being placed under arrest.

For foreign nationals, an arrest in Florida is a frightening and confusing experience. The situation has the potential to severely impact the ability of these travelers to either leave the United States or possibly even be readmitted to their home countries.

Melbourne International Visitor Arrests Lawyer

Were you arrested in Satellite Beach while visiting from another country? Make sure that you have legal representation that is familiar with local courts.

James Coulter, our Brevard County international visitor arrest attorney at The Law Offices of James B. Coulter aggressively defend foreign nationals arrested in Central Florida and fights to help them return to their home countries as soon as possible. Call (321) 586-9944 to let us review your case during a free, confidential consultation.

Florida International Visitor Arrests Center

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Types of Crimes That Lead to International Visitor Arrests in Brevard County

The country that an alleged offender is a citizen of is not the primary concern of law enforcement in Florida. Rather, police focus on the nature of the crime and securing the evidence necessary to support any criminal charges.

Some of the alleged crimes that tourists or visitors from other countries are most often accused of in the Palm Shores area include, but are not limited to:

  • Assault;
  • Battery;
  • Breach of the Peace / Disorderly Conduct;
  • Carrying a Concealed Weapon;
  • Criminal Mischief;
  • Criminal Trespass;
  • Disorderly Intoxication;
  • Domestic Violence;
  • Driving Under the Influence (DUI);
  • Drug Charges;
  • Felony Marijuana Possession;
  • Misdemeanor Marijuana Possession;
  • Petit Theft;
  • Resisting an Officer With Violence;
  • Resisting an Officer Without Violence (ROWOV);
  • Retail Theft;
  • Sex-Related Offenses;
  • Solicitation of Prostitution;
  • Traffic Offenses; or
  • Violent Offenses.

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When Florida Notices to Appear Are Issued to International Visitors

Travelers from other countries who are not physically placed under arrest following an encounter with law enforcement may be issued a notice to appear in lieu of being taken into custody. This form often has the appearance of a ticket and, thus, many alleged offenders can believe that their misdemeanor offenses or minor criminal matters can be resolved simply by paying a fine by mail.

However, a notice to appear is the legal equivalent of a formal arrest. It is still used to charge alleged offenders with criminal offenses. While such notices are typically given to alleged offenders who police officers determine are less likely to pose “flight risks,” there are occasions in which these notices are issued simply as a matter of convenience for law enforcement.

A notice to appear will list a court date, and an alleged offender who misses that court date can then have a bench warrant issued for his or her arrest. When a notice to appear becomes a failure to appear, it can cause significant additional complications specifically for international travelers who may suddenly find themselves unable to depart the United States or reenter their home countries.

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Possible Passport or Visa Issues Following International Visitor Arrests

When a foreign national is arrested in the Sunshine State, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) abides by the guidelines of the United States Department of State. This means that police officers will follow these steps:

  • Determine the foreign national's country.
  • Determine whether or not notification must be made to the consulate of the foreign national's country.
  • If the foreign national's country is on the list of mandatory notification countries, the officer should notify that country's nearest consular officials without delay of the arrest and tell the foreign national this notification has been made.
  • If the foreign national's country is not on the mandatory notification list, the officer should offer without delay to notify the foreign national's consular officials of the arrest.
  • If the foreign national asks that consular notification be given, the officer should notify the nearest consular officials of the foreign national's country without delay.
  • Keep a written record of the provision of notification and actions taken.

When there is a pending criminal charge against an international visitor, this will be reflected on his or her passport or visa. Such criminal charge may become an issue when the visa or passport is presented as the foreign national attempts to leave the United States, and he or she may be denied the opportunity to leave.

If the international traveler is able to leave the United States, the criminal charge could still pose problems when his or her home country reviews the passport or visa upon re-entry. It is enormously important that the alleged offender not lie about the criminal charge at any time his or her visa or passport is being reviewed, as such dishonesty can lead to additional criminal charges that make his or her situation much worse.

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International Visitor Arrests Lawyer in Titusville

If you were arrested while visiting Central Florida but live in another country, it is in your best interest to make sure that you have legal counsel that is extremely knowledgeable with state and local laws. The The Law Offices of James B. Coulter helps people from various countries who have been charged with all types of misdemeanor and felony criminal offenses in the Rockledge area.

The The Law Offices of James B. Coulter understands the tremendously complicated nature of these types of cases, and we will work to achieve a resolution to your situation that minimizes or completely eliminates your obligation to make multiple court appearances in Florida. Let our Brevard County international arrest attorney will see how The Law Offices of James B. Coulter can help you by having us review your case when you call (321) 586-9944 for a free consultation.

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Law Offices of James B. Coulter
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