This webinar is geared toward those with previous exposure to bond proceedings, who would now like to fine-tune their bond advocacy skills. In this webinar, we will focus most of our time on emerging evidentiary challenges. For example, proving that your client is not a “danger to the community” or “flight risk,” when they have pending criminal charges or no discernible relief from removal.
Grisel Ruiz is a Supervising Attorney in San Francisco where she focuses on the intersection between immigration law and criminal law. This includes advising attorneys and advocates on the immigration consequences of criminal offenses, training on removal defense, and supporting local and statewide campaigns to push back on immigration enforcement. In addition to technical assistance, training, and campaign support in these areas, Grisel also helps lead the ILRC’s state legislative work. Grisel is currently the Board Chair for Freedom for Immigrants (formerly CIVIC), a nonprofit that advocates for detained immigrants.
Prior to working with the ILRC, Grisel was a litigation associate at Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP and a Stimson Fellow housed at the UC Davis Law School Immigration Clinic and California Rural Legal Assistance Foundation. As a legal fellow, she co-founded “Know Your Rights” programs at local immigration detention centers, for which she received an award from Cosmo for Latinas.
Grisel is an immigrant herself and earned her law degree from the University of Chicago where she received the Tony Patiño Fellowship. She received her undergraduate degree from the University of Notre Dame, where she dual majored in Political Science and Spanish Literature. Grisel is admitted to the bar in California is fluent in Spanish.
Anita Gupta, Staff Attorney - ILRC
Anita Gupta is a staff attorney based in Austin, Texas, where she focuses on policy work in Texas at the local and state levels. This includes developing and cultivating local partnerships with community-based organizations, elected officials, and law enforcement agencies to advance immigrant and criminal justice policies throughout Texas and developing unique legal strategies that support those policies. She serves as an expert and thought partner to community based-organizations and local government officials on issues related to the intersectionality of immigration and criminal justice, such as SB4, 287(g) and other policies that impact immigrants in Texas locally. Anita also contributes to the ILRC’s Attorney of the Day program, practice manuals and advisories, and webinar trainings. Prior to joining the ILRC, Anita worked in private practice in Austin, specializing in removal defense and humanitarian-based immigration relief. She also worked at American Gateways, one of the largest immigration legal service providers in Central Texas. Before moving to Texas, Anita was a staff attorney in the Immigrant Legal Defense project at the National Immigrant Justice Center (NIJC) in Chicago, where she represented low-income immigrants in a variety of matters before the Chicago Immigration Court, USCIS, and ICE. Anita has extensive experience with several types of immigration cases, including asylum, cancellation of removal, waivers, adjustment of status, family-based petitions, DACA, U-visas, VAWA, TPS, naturalization, and more.
Anita obtained her Bachelor’s Degree in International Studies and Political Science from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and she earned her law degree from DePaul University in Chicago. During law school, Anita participated in DePaul’s Asylum and Refugee Law clinic, and she interned at the Legal Assistance Foundation and the National Immigrant Justice Center. Anita is admitted to the Illinois bar, and she serves on the executive board for the South Asian Bar Association of Austin. She speaks Spanish.
Meeth Soni, Director of Litigation & Advocacy - Immigrant Defenders Law Center
Meeth (Munmeeth) Soni is a Co-Legal Director at ImmDef focused on the Adult Representation Project (ARP). Prior to joining ImmDef in May 2016, Meeth spent seven years as staff attorney in the immigration unit at the Public Law Center in Santa Ana. While there, she won an Equal Justice Works fellowship in 2011 to build an in-house asylum and deportation defense practice. Before that, Meeth held an AmeriCorps Equal Justice Works fellowship. From 2008 to 2009, she was an associate at Fraleys & Associates, a boutique business litigation firm in Los Angeles. Meeth represented Petitioner in the Ninth Circuit published decision Avendano-Hernandez v. Lynch. She received the 2016 California Lawyer Attorney of the Year award from the Daily Journal and was awarded the inaugural M. Katherine B. Darmer Outstanding Community Service Award by the Orange County Lavender Bar Association in recognition of her advocacy on behalf of LGBTQ immigrants. Meeth is member of the adjunct faculty at the UCI School of Law and the Western State College of Law. She received her Juris Doctor cum laude from American University, Washington College of Law (2007) and her B.A. with honors from Wesleyan University (1997). Meeth speaks Punjabi, Hindi, and Spanish and is a known dog-whisperer to strays. When she is not working, she might be found dancing in the ImmDef hallways to her Burning Hips routine.