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Thread: Expungement?

  1. #1
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    Default Expungement?

    I'm new here and I understand that I have not yet contributed to other posts, but I have a situation that I need some advice on.

    Right to the point, I have been arrested for possession of marijuana and paraphernalia and from that I received a conditional discharge which I have completed. I am getting the record expunged so my question comes down to:

    With an expungement, does the record still show up on the FBI background check? It is a full expungement, by which I mean I got a lawyer.

    Anyone with any experience on the matter please help!
    Last edited by namiburlesk; January 22nd, 2015 at 08:03.

  2. #2
    Feckless Manchild Otaku word's Avatar
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    Default Re: Expungement?

    Order a background check for yourself and see. That's the only way to know with absolute certainty.
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    It's festivals days like these on which I really try really hard to make up for not partying in college.
    yeah, because who needs free flowing drugs and alcohol fueling adventorous sex with taut, lithe young bodies when you could wander around a dying town in the freezing cold with a can of asahi super dry in your hand while some toothless old farmer shouts at you.

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    Billy Big Bollocks Ini's Avatar
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    Default Re: Expungement?

    sounds like your chances of getting shortlisted just went


    get it? its a drug joke! Thank you, I'll be here all week. Try the fish and dont forget to tip your waitress.
    Great men of action never mind on occasion being ridiculous; in a sense it is part of their job.

  4. #4
    Perpetually confused. johnny's Avatar
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    Default Re: Expungement?

    I agree with word. Check for yourself. I'm sorry to hear about your situation. In most countries from which JET gets its ALT's, and even many parts of the US, simple possession wouldn't even get you a fine let alone a criminal record.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ini View Post
    Teach them something new?? Are you mad? All you do in Japan is rehash the same stuff over and over for 15 years. Hello song, what do you like sports? and fruit basket. The holy trinity of English education.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Expungement?

    Quote Originally Posted by johnny View Post
    I agree with word. Check for yourself. I'm sorry to hear about your situation. In most countries from which JET gets its ALT's, and even many parts of the US, simple possession wouldn't even get you a fine let alone a criminal record.
    Where I'm from The Pigs are usually selling a bit on the side themselves.

    Doesn't look good for the OP but given what we know about him I expect he's chilled out enough to roll with the punches.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Expungement?

    Quote Originally Posted by namiburlesk View Post
    I'm new here and I understand that I have not yet contributed to other posts, but I have a situation that I need some advice on.

    Right to the point, I have been arrested for possession of marijuana and paraphernalia and from that I received a conditional discharge which I have completed. I am getting the record expunged so my question comes down to:

    With an expungement, does the record still show up on the FBI background check? It is a full expungement, by which I mean I got a lawyer.

    Anyone with any experience on the matter please help!
    Just so you know, if this does come up on your FBI report, your chances of getting into JET are slim to none. Marijuana posession criminal records are a huge deal in Japan, and it is specifically listed as one of the reasons for you to be denied entrance in Japan if you go without a visa, or denied getting a via processed. You would have to go through a long visa approval process explaining what happened, and including court documentation. Just to let you know that I dealt with dozens of these cases during my time in the visa section, and not once did Tokyo approve their petitions. We are talking about 50 year old business men who had a run in with the law when they were 18/19, and it screwed them 30 years later.


    So lets say best case scenario, nothing comes up on your FBI report. Then you need to make a decisions as to what you will write on your application form (considering you are applying next year). You are really stuck between a rock and a hard place here. If you lie, you run the risk of being discovered and being disqualified. If you are truthful, then you run the risk of being cut because of the marijuana charge.

    If you are an applicant this year, and did not write anything about a marijuana posession charge, and it does happen to come up on your report, then you will be disqualified for lying on your application(not disclosing the record prior). This would be the same with any crime, not just drug charges.

    Best of luck
    Anything I say here is my personal opinion. Always consult with your coordinator if you have any doubts, especially if you are applying from a country that is not the United States.

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    Gizmoduck - blatherskite Gizmotech's Avatar
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    Default Re: Expungement?

    Quote Originally Posted by miamicoordinator View Post
    So lets say best case scenario, nothing comes up on your FBI report. Then you need to make a decisions as to what you will write on your application form (considering you are applying next year). You are really stuck between a rock and a hard place here. If you lie, you run the risk of being discovered and being disqualified. If you are truthful, then you run the risk of being cut because of the marijuana charge.
    If they get it expunged (IE it is no longer on the FBI record) then why would the JET program ever need to know about it? Where are they required to disclose things like that which are no longer relevant?
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  8. #8
    Feckless Manchild Otaku word's Avatar
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    Default Re: Expungement?

    Honesty. CLAIR doesn't ask about your records; they ask about your history. miami can hardly offer any other answer; he's giving the answer that CLAIR expects him to give. Just doin' his job. I quite admire him for being as pragmatic as he is. OP, I would obviously recommend that you not mention the incident if it doesn't appear on your FBI report.
    Quote Originally Posted by 00Bear00 View Post
    When I read your post I suddenly feel like I am so far away from being crazy.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ananasboat View Post
    It's festivals days like these on which I really try really hard to make up for not partying in college.
    yeah, because who needs free flowing drugs and alcohol fueling adventorous sex with taut, lithe young bodies when you could wander around a dying town in the freezing cold with a can of asahi super dry in your hand while some toothless old farmer shouts at you.

  9. #9
    Official JET Staff miamicoordinator's Avatar
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    Default Re: Expungement?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gizmotech View Post
    If they get it expunged (IE it is no longer on the FBI record) then why would the JET program ever need to know about it? Where are they required to disclose things like that which are no longer relevant?
    I know it may not seem much sense Gizmo, but I have had a few cases where applicants have left criminal history off their application because they thought their records were expunged, and it comes up with the FBI or State criminal background check.

    All these people were immediately cut from the short list for dishonesty. We even had a case where a person did not have a criminal record at all at the time of application, but got a DUI during new years. When he came to the interview, he did not tell us about the DUI, and it came up on his criminal report. He was 1 month away from departure, and Tokyo cut him.

    I agree with the advice that it is wise to get your own FBI check prior to the application to see if anything is on there(if you have been arrested). Unfortunately, many people do not have the foresight for this, and since the FBI report takes a while to process now with the backlog, they turn in their applications without 100% knowledge if anything will come up or not. It is in cases like this where you have been arrested or your lawyer tells you that your record has been expunged that you get caught in the hard decision.

    The main point is, I have seen too many times where an applicant get booted because his/her lawyer told them their record was expunged, only time to find out it was partially expunged, as in nothing will come up during a job search, but it will still come up on the official FBI record. In times like these, you will benefit from honesty and disclosure on the application.
    Anything I say here is my personal opinion. Always consult with your coordinator if you have any doubts, especially if you are applying from a country that is not the United States.

  10. #10
    Senior Member hiddenlee22's Avatar
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    Default Re: Expungement?

    Quote Originally Posted by miamicoordinator View Post
    I know it may not seem much sense Gizmo, but I have had a few cases where applicants have left criminal history off their application because they thought their records were expunged, and it comes up with the FBI or State criminal background check.

    All these people were immediately cut from the short list for dishonesty. We even had a case where a person did not have a criminal record at all at the time of application, but got a DUI during new years. When he came to the interview, he did not tell us about the DUI, and it came up on his criminal report. He was 1 month away from departure, and Tokyo cut him.
    That really does suck. I'm confused though when you said FBI and State criminal background check. Did we need both now?

    Also, why would you send in your report knowing (because you have to open and make copies, correct?) that something is on your record?
    Last edited by hiddenlee22; January 25th, 2015 at 00:45.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Expungement?

    Quote Originally Posted by hiddenlee22 View Post
    That really does suck. I'm confused though when you said FBI and State criminal background check. Did we need both now?

    Also, why would send in your report knowing (because you have to open and make copies, correct?) that something is on your record?
    In cases where your fbi background check takes too long to process, or if there is a problem with your fingerprints, tokyo will ask participants for a state background check instead. You do not need both. You only need the fbi, and the state if there is an issue with the fbi coming in on time. Most applicants only ever need to worry about the fbi.

    As far as sending in your record when you know something is on it, that is for people who know their records are not spotless and still want to apply. For example, i had someone last year who had an arrest for loitering and vandalism when she was 15. She disclosed this on her application and sure enough, it showed up on her fbi report. Since she let us know about it beforehand, she is now happily enjoying her time as an alt in japan. She was a great candidate, but had made a stupid mistake as a kid. Since she was upfront and honest, she had no issues.
    Anything I say here is my personal opinion. Always consult with your coordinator if you have any doubts, especially if you are applying from a country that is not the United States.

  12. #12
    Senior Member mothy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Expungement?

    But I think in the case of marijuana hero they're fucked if they fess up as well, so they may as well lie and hope it doesn't show up on their FBI report.
    I get that people telling the whole truth would make your job easier minamicorduroy, but lets be honest here.

  13. #13
    Feckless Manchild Otaku word's Avatar
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    Default Re: Expungement?

    Quote Originally Posted by mothy View Post
    But I think in the case of marijuana hero they're fucked if they fess up as well, so they may as well lie and hope it doesn't show up on their FBI report.
    I get that people telling the whole truth would make your job easier minamicorduroy, but lets be honest here.
    Let's also be real. miami can't offer any other advice. He's under an obvious obligation. I think he's done a pretty good job of being as pragmatic as he could possibly be. We are not subject to the same obligations and can therefor offer the sort of advice that we're offering ("Lie").
    Quote Originally Posted by 00Bear00 View Post
    When I read your post I suddenly feel like I am so far away from being crazy.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ananasboat View Post
    It's festivals days like these on which I really try really hard to make up for not partying in college.
    yeah, because who needs free flowing drugs and alcohol fueling adventorous sex with taut, lithe young bodies when you could wander around a dying town in the freezing cold with a can of asahi super dry in your hand while some toothless old farmer shouts at you.

  14. #14

    Default Re: Expungement?

    Quote Originally Posted by miamicoordinator View Post
    I know it may not seem much sense Gizmo, but I have had a few cases where applicants have left criminal history off their application because they thought their records were expunged, and it comes up with the FBI or State criminal background check.

    All these people were immediately cut from the short list for dishonesty. We even had a case where a person did not have a criminal record at all at the time of application, but got a DUI during new years. When he came to the interview, he did not tell us about the DUI, and it came up on his criminal report. He was 1 month away from departure, and Tokyo cut him.

    I agree with the advice that it is wise to get your own FBI check prior to the application to see if anything is on there(if you have been arrested). Unfortunately, many people do not have the foresight for this, and since the FBI report takes a while to process now with the backlog, they turn in their applications without 100% knowledge if anything will come up or not. It is in cases like this where you have been arrested or your lawyer tells you that your record has been expunged that you get caught in the hard decision.

    The main point is, I have seen too many times where an applicant get booted because his/her lawyer told them their record was expunged, only time to find out it was partially expunged, as in nothing will come up during a job search, but it will still come up on the official FBI record. In times like these, you will benefit from honesty and disclosure on the application.
    Expungement is supposed to wipe your record so there is no evidence of it ever happening. In such cases, you can rightfully claim you were never convicted of anything, as nothing should show up on any report at the state or federal level.

    This is in contrast to having a "sealed record," in which the circumstances of your conviction are hidden to most authorities, but the record is still technically present. Some agencies can un-seal your record and see what all the fuss was about (the Japanese Consulate is not one of them), so while you can technically claim you were never convicted for most employers, the FBI/CIA/USMC (as an employer) will not see it the same way since they will subpoena those records before enlisting you. (This is not the same thing as the "FBI Background Check.")

    In the case of expungement, once you're at that level of scrutiny, they can still subpoena your records but the most they'll have returned is a note that "records pertaining to this individual have been expunged." Nothing more; just a hint that you did something that was later expunged.

    Clerical errors do happen, especially between law enforcement agencies who have not managed to get their shit together in over 100 years of operation. Just because your records were expunged doesn't mean there aren't arrest records or other stray reports still floating around out there that shouldn't be, or that anything was properly expunged in the first place.

    Just like running your credit report before applying for a mortgage to see what's going to be held against you, as a near-convict you now have the added burden of needing to do the same with your criminal history. You really ought to have run it well in advance before applying (for this or any job, really) because errors can take quite a bit of time to clear up depending on their severity. The welfare of criminals has never been a high priority in this country.

    So-- by all rights, you're applying to be an English teacher, not a defense contractor. You should be fine if everybody did their job properly, but you really took a gamble on this one by not looking into it beforehand.
    Last edited by starfish; January 25th, 2015 at 03:29.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Expungement?

    Quote Originally Posted by mothy View Post
    But I think in the case of marijuana hero they're fucked if they fess up as well, so they may as well lie and hope it doesn't show up on their FBI report.
    I get that people telling the whole truth would make your job easier minamicorduroy, but lets be honest here.
    I can't speak to JET in particular, but consider this:

    It seems obvious to you that if you indicate on a job application that you were convicted of drug possession, it's automatic disqualification. Nobody wants to hire a filthy criminal to work for them!

    In some cases, that might be a consideration. (Legally, it's not supposed to be, but good luck with that.)

    But suppose you lie about it and you got the job somehow. You now live with a secret that can be exploited for the sake of espionage or embezzlement. I find out about your dirty secret by combing through your Facebook posts...now send me the source code for the project you're working on or a curious email might reach the desk of your boss. Or I could extort you over it, to the point where you start to consider stealing from your employer to make your own ends meet. It gets ugly.

    From what I've seen, if you don't get automatically disqualified, it's best to be open and honest about the nature of your history because it means you (a) take responsibility for what you did, and (b) cannot be blackmailed over it during the course of your employment. Nobody actually does it, but this is why if you were to get convicted of anything while employed, you're supposed to inform your employer about it even if the consequences are clear.

    Defense contractors who admitted during a polygraph test that they've downloaded child porn have not only passed the test but also successfully gotten security clearances just because they were honest about themselves. With their shame out on the table, there are no secrets for anybody to hold over them!
    Last edited by starfish; January 25th, 2015 at 04:14.

  16. #16
    Senior Member mothy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Expungement?

    Yeah. I would totally give in to blackmail to keep on freaking JET.

  17. #17

    Default Re: Expungement?

    Quote Originally Posted by mothy View Post
    Yeah. I would totally give in to blackmail to keep on freaking JET.
    "Give in to my demands or I reveal your alcoholism to your employer!"

    "..."
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  18. #18
    Perpetually confused. johnny's Avatar
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    Default Re: Expungement?

    I really don't see why someone would bother blackmailing namiburlesk in this case. For blackmail you need to have some sort of evidence to hold against the blackmailee or else the blackmailee can just deny everything.

    I do not think it's likely that someone will sneak into the court house and sneak away with the record namiburlesk's arrest. No one would risk stealing criminal records just to extort money from someone with a JET's salary. The reward doesn't come close to being worth the risk.

    What's more. What does nami really have to lose? If he or she gets found out, then he or she will be fired and deported. So what?

    Anyway, I don't see blackmail as being an issue here.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ini View Post
    Teach them something new?? Are you mad? All you do in Japan is rehash the same stuff over and over for 15 years. Hello song, what do you like sports? and fruit basket. The holy trinity of English education.

  19. #19

    Default Re: Expungement?

    Quote Originally Posted by johnny View Post
    I really don't see why someone would bother blackmailing namiburlesk in this case. For blackmail you need to have some sort of evidence to hold against the blackmailee or else the blackmailee can just deny everything.
    Nah-- all it takes is a whistleblower with a chip on their shoulder that "hey, maybe you should look a little closer at ___'s history." My father-in-law once hired a senior executive who fabricated his entire educational history. Nobody questioned it for years until someone (probably a jealous lesser manager) prompted them to.

    Extortion was just one example; JETs have no money so focusing on that is missing the greater point-- employees with undisclosed criminal histories are a liability.

  20. #20
    Senior Member mothy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Expungement?

    I think you've completely misjudged what an ALT is.

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