After GENERAL HOSPITAL’s Dev used a fake passport to get into the country, Sonny created a false identity for the Turkish teen and took him in. Wondering what their fate might be if and/or when the truth catches up to them, Soaps In Depth spoke to a juvenile immigration expert at The Legal Project in Albany, NY. Despite Sonny claiming Dev is family and having Brick create faux paperwork for “Devin Corbin,” the teen may still be eligible for legal immigration status if caught… while Sonny could end up in the clink!
“He could definitely be subject to criminal prosecution for fraud and things of that nature for creating and helping Dev obtain false documents,” attorney Mary Armistead warned. But of course, that’s only if the paper trail leads to Sonny! And considering the Teflon don’s past and Brick’s connections, that seems unlikely. As for Josslyn, Trina and Cameron — who were clued in to the truth and kept Dev’s secret — the teens would not be subject to criminal charges in New York State. “But they could be subject to juvenile delinquency charges,” Armistead explained, “and put in a juvenile detention system.”
Dev could also end up in federal custody… but his situation is not without hope. “When he came into the United States, he made a material misrepresentation to gain entrance,” set up Armistead. “So if immigration authorities discovered his documents were false, he would be put into removal proceedings. As a minor, he wouldn’t be put into the adult, jail-type detentions we’ve seen on the news lately. He would be put into something that is a foster-care-like situation… but not as nice.”
That said, Dev still has a case for remaining Stateside — both because he’s an orphan and because helping Sonny made him a target of the Turkish Mob. “He could be potentially eligible for asylum based on this whole mobster thing,” Armistead agreed. “And he could also be eligible for something called Special Immigrant Juvenile Status — whether his parents have abandoned him or they’re deceased. And you apply for refugee status outside of the United States, but you apply for asylum from within the United States. So he may have a lot of immigration relief options. With some of them, his material misrepresentation issue might bar him, but that can also be waived.”
Armistead noted that Dev’s real mistake here was turning to Sonny instead of an immigration expert. “The problem is the people don’t understand our asylum system,” she said. “Immigration lawyers are constantly having to look things up and figure things out. It confuses people that are immersed in it day-in and day-out — much less a 16-year-old who has lived on the streets!
“This poor kid,” she concluded. “Even if he’s a hustler, his life forced that upon him. I’m impressed he was able to do as much as he’s done. We need to find him and tell him he had options other than being with this mobster!” Well, we’re not so sure Dev would want them, considering the life of luxury he is now living as an extended member of the Corinthos family… but that’s good to know!
For more GH news, keep reading the ABC edition of Soaps In Depth magazine.
This story originally appeared in our print magazine