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Teaching in Japan with an Arrest/Criminal Record (Advice needed)

impression88

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Hello everyone, I have been stressing out incredibly hard over the past 6 months because of my circumstances. I would appreciate any advice.

During my final semester at University late last year in California, I was arrested for public intoxication (passed out on a bus stop while walking home), which is a misdemeanor. I, subsequently, hired an attorney and had my case dismissed. Therefore, I do not have a a misdemeanor; however, I still have a criminal record, because charges were still filed.

Normally, one would think that since a charge did not result in a conviction, one would not have a criminal record; however, this is simply not the case. All arrest records are retained and appear on the FBI Criminal Background Check for the rest of your life (cannot expunge a dismissed case). Therefore, I have a criminal record--it is not spotless.

My main concern is that Japanese immigration may deny me a visa because of my charges, because it shows up on my background check (ordered one already). I know that the Japanese and all East Asian countries have a no tolerance policy with regard to drugs.

I know that public intoxication is not a drug charge; however, in my FBI CBC, this ******* charge is listed as "1 COUNTS OF DISORD CONDUCT,UI/DRUG". Apparently in California, public intoxication, as well as other silly charges, are all filed under this heading. This heading, specifically the "DRUG" part is incredibly misleading, and I'm really worried that Japanese immigration will see the "DRUG" part and be convinced I was under the influence of drugs.

I even talked to a recruiter in Korea and they told me that they will not be able to find my employment, specifically because of the "DRUG" wording on my background check.

What should I do guys? Should I lie in fear of the misleading heading on my visa and COE application that I do not have a criminal record and if caught, use my "non-conviction" as an excuse (JET is off the table)? Has anyone successfully done this? If I tell the truth, will I be rejected entry into Japan? Does Japan immediately background check everyone that applies for a VISA or COE? Advice needed. Thank you.
 

nice gaijin

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yeah @impression88, why wouldn't you respond to the thread you already had started? Did you forget it was there?
 

Mike Cash

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Do you think he might someday figure out that what Korea may or may not do is entirely irrelevant to what Japan may or may not do?
 

nice gaijin

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Do you think he might someday figure out that what Korea may or may not do is entirely irrelevant to what Japan may or may not do?
Maybe when he reads my response in the thread you linked from 6 months ago... Which specifically mentions my friend that failed to find employment in Korea and was able to work in Japan...
 

Mike Cash

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Maybe when he reads my response in the thread you linked from 6 months ago... Which specifically mentions my friend that failed to find employment in Korea and was able to work in Japan...
Maybe he'll also notice that even if he had received a misdemeanor conviction out of this it still wouldn't matter, as Japan only bars those with felony convictions.
 
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