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[OP]
Newbie
Jul 6, 2015
11 posts
Nepean, ON

Am I flagged?

Hello,
A few months ago a family friend had asked me to drive him to Buffalo for a family reunion. I had nothing better to do, so I did (I had done State side trips with him in the past with no problems). Now while trying to cross the border, we got sent into secondary and the family friend was being questioned by the CBP. It turned out that he had lied and was actually going there for work which he had not told me about. He was deemed inadmissible and was given a 5 year ban from entering the States. Now, no one from the CBP spoke to me or said anything. I literally sat there the whole time without being spoken too. On the way out the friend was told he can petition their decision. I asked if there was anything I had to do and the CBP officer said that every time I cross I might be scrutinized and may be denied entry depending on how the officers feel... I haven't been back since but I need to make a few trips in the upcoming months and was thinking of applying for a nexus card. I don't know if I've actually been flagged because I wasn't given any paper work and no one had actually said a word to me until we were shown the way back to Canada. I was just wondering if anyone had a smilier experience or had any knowledge of this kind of scenario and may be able to provide some feedback.

Thanks!
Last edited by ssstar on Feb 2nd, 2018 10:08 am, edited 1 time in total.
18 replies
Member
May 7, 2017
347 posts
163 upvotes
Hahaha what a friend your screwed. Good luck every time you cross its Russian rouellete
Member
Mar 24, 2008
233 posts
78 upvotes
Halifax
From their point of view, you showed up with someone who was trying to enter under false pretences and subsequently given a ban. It's part of your border-crossing history now and they like to keep records on this stuff. That said, you weren't banned and even if you're now flagged for increased scrutiny, so what? Just make extra-sure you have your ducks in a row when crossing from now on. And I wouldn't let it stop you from applying for a NEXUS card.

Back in 1996 I tried to cross over at Detroit to do some work at a customer location (a client of my Canadian company). It was my first time crossing for work and I got sent to secondary, where they told me I needed a contract showing that I was being paid by my company and not by our US customer. Went back to Canada, my company faxed something official-looking through to the Canadian side, I went back over to the US and breezed through. Never had another problem crossing to the US after that and I'd pretty much forgotten about this incident, until...

Fast forward 19 years to my NEXUS interview. The officer asked if I'd ever been denied entry to the US, I said no and then said, well there was this one time, I'm not sure if it counted as a denial... And he said, Yep, it's in your file, I just wanted to see if you'd mention it. He didn't seem to have access to the details so I told him what happened and he was surprised I was denied, but it was in there anyway. That was it and I was approved for NEXUS.

So I'd go ahead and apply. If you get the conditional approval, be prepared for this to come up at the in-person interview with CBP, but my experience shows that a minor issue at the border doesn't necessarily prevent you from getting NEXUS.
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Dec 27, 2009
7398 posts
4667 upvotes
Victoria, BC
kavatski wrote: From their point of view, you showed up with someone who was trying to enter under false pretences and subsequently given a ban. It's part of your border-crossing history now and they like to keep records on this stuff. That said, you weren't banned and even if you're now flagged for increased scrutiny, so what? Just make extra-sure you have your ducks in a row when crossing from now on. And I wouldn't let it stop you from applying for a NEXUS card.

Back in 1996 I tried to cross over at Detroit to do some work at a customer location (a client of my Canadian company). It was my first time crossing for work and I got sent to secondary, where they told me I needed a contract showing that I was being paid by my company and not by our US customer. Went back to Canada, my company faxed something official-looking through to the Canadian side, I went back over to the US and breezed through. Never had another problem crossing to the US after that and I'd pretty much forgotten about this incident, until...

Fast forward 19 years to my NEXUS interview. The officer asked if I'd ever been denied entry to the US, I said no and then said, well there was this one time, I'm not sure if it counted as a denial... And he said, Yep, it's in your file, I just wanted to see if you'd mention it. He didn't seem to have access to the details so I told him what happened and he was surprised I was denied, but it was in there anyway. That was it and I was approved for NEXUS.

So I'd go ahead and apply. If you get the conditional approval, be prepared for this to come up at the in-person interview with CBP, but my experience shows that a minor issue at the border doesn't necessarily prevent you from getting NEXUS.
I'd be more reluctant to apply so soon after the incident as OP is though. Good luck to OP no matter what.
Deal Fanatic
Apr 24, 2006
6871 posts
805 upvotes
Toronto
Oh the fun of people crossing international borders, it ain't like going to buy milk at Sobeys!
I Declare - The official guide to your Customs exemptions and item restrictions when returning to Canada from abroad.
Deal Fanatic
Jun 11, 2005
8550 posts
2325 upvotes
Mississauga
ssstar wrote: Hello,
A few months ago a family friend had asked me to drive him to Buffalo for a family reunion. I had nothing better to do, so I did (I had done State side trips with him in the past with no problems). Now while trying to cross the border, we got sent into secondary and the family friend was being questioned by the CBP. It turned out that he had lied and was actually going there for work which he had not told me about. He was deemed inadmissible and was given a 5 year ban from entering the States. Now, no one from the CBP spoke to me or said anything. I literally sat there the whole time without being spoken too. On the way out the friend was told he can petition their decision. I asked if there was anything I had to do and the CBP officer said that every time I cross I might be scrutinized and may be denied entry depending on how the officers feel... I haven't been back since but I need to make a few trips in the upcoming months and was thinking of applying for a nexus card. I don't know if I've actually been flagged because I wasn't given any paper work and no one had actually said a word to me until we were shown the way back to Canada. I was just wondering if anyone had a smilier experience or had any knowledge of this kind of scenario and may be able to provide some feedback.

Thanks!
You have been flagged as you should be. He is not a friend since he lied. Be prepared to get pulled in every time you cross.
Deal Fanatic
Aug 29, 2011
6431 posts
3449 upvotes
Mississauga
cwb27 wrote: Oh the fun of people crossing international borders, it ain't like going to buy milk at Sobeys!
These days for sure.

I grew up in Windsor and up until 9/11 crossing the border really was that easy. Canada Customs almost never checked ID. US customs agents actually had a sense of humour. I’d go to Detroit at least a couple of times a month to shop, eat, etc.
Deal Addict
Nov 25, 2010
4983 posts
1316 upvotes
Abbottabad
Please fix the grammar in the title.
[OP]
Newbie
Jul 6, 2015
11 posts
Nepean, ON
kavatski wrote: From their point of view, you showed up with someone who was trying to enter under false pretences and subsequently given a ban. It's part of your border-crossing history now and they like to keep records on this stuff. That said, you weren't banned and even if you're now flagged for increased scrutiny, so what? Just make extra-sure you have your ducks in a row when crossing from now on. And I wouldn't let it stop you from applying for a NEXUS card.

Back in 1996 I tried to cross over at Detroit to do some work at a customer location (a client of my Canadian company). It was my first time crossing for work and I got sent to secondary, where they told me I needed a contract showing that I was being paid by my company and not by our US customer. Went back to Canada, my company faxed something official-looking through to the Canadian side, I went back over to the US and breezed through. Never had another problem crossing to the US after that and I'd pretty much forgotten about this incident, until...

Fast forward 19 years to my NEXUS interview. The officer asked if I'd ever been denied entry to the US, I said no and then said, well there was this one time, I'm not sure if it counted as a denial... And he said, Yep, it's in your file, I just wanted to see if you'd mention it. He didn't seem to have access to the details so I told him what happened and he was surprised I was denied, but it was in there anyway. That was it and I was approved for NEXUS.

So I'd go ahead and apply. If you get the conditional approval, be prepared for this to come up at the in-person interview with CBP, but my experience shows that a minor issue at the border doesn't necessarily prevent you from getting NEXUS.
Thanks for the feedback, I really appreciate it! I'm just wondering if I should make a day trip before actually applying to see whether I get stopped or not!
[OP]
Newbie
Jul 6, 2015
11 posts
Nepean, ON
antigua1999 wrote: You have been flagged as you should be. He is not a friend since he lied. Be prepared to get pulled in every time you cross.
Yeah, that friendship ended. I was not aware of any of this until it all unfolded. Lesson learned.
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Sep 13, 2003
9923 posts
1661 upvotes
cwb27 wrote: Oh the fun of people crossing international borders, it ain't like going to buy milk at Sobeys!
It's like going to buy a sale item at a No Frills......scary
One blind human - a tragedy
Ten blind humans - a disaster
One million blind humans - a statistic
Deal Addict
User avatar
Aug 15, 2015
1568 posts
199 upvotes
Markham, ON
Well, where's the post about getting served uncontested divorce decisions while crossing the border? Or leaving Canada.

That would be a grand finale.
Banned
Oct 10, 2016
758 posts
333 upvotes
ssstar wrote: Hello,
A few months ago a family friend had asked me to drive him to Buffalo for a family reunion. I had nothing better to do, so I did (I had done State side trips with him in the past with no problems). Now while trying to cross the border, we got sent into secondary and the family friend was being questioned by the CBP. It turned out that he had lied and was actually going there for work which he had not told me about. He was deemed inadmissible and was given a 5 year ban from entering the States. Now, no one from the CBP spoke to me or said anything. I literally sat there the whole time without being spoken too. On the way out the friend was told he can petition their decision. I asked if there was anything I had to do and the CBP officer said that every time I cross I might be scrutinized and may be denied entry depending on how the officers feel... I haven't been back since but I need to make a few trips in the upcoming months and was thinking of applying for a nexus card. I don't know if I've actually been flagged because I wasn't given any paper work and no one had actually said a word to me until we were shown the way back to Canada. I was just wondering if anyone had a smilier experience or had any knowledge of this kind of scenario and may be able to provide some feedback.

Thanks!
No not flagged. I was 17 I was crossing the border to go shop. 2 of my friends got busted 1 had weed(I didn't know), 1 had fake IDs(being 17). Never had a a problem crossing and these guys go to the states with no problems no waivers nothing even tho they were found guilty and paid fines.
Deal Addict
Dec 22, 2008
2162 posts
964 upvotes
Victoria
I suspect there's some victim blaming going on here by people that don't really know the applicable laws. Out of all the comments here I think maybe 2 people actually know what's going on. Maybe see a lawyer?
Deal Expert
Feb 7, 2017
16571 posts
13887 upvotes
Eastern Ontario
estevens wrote: No not flagged. I was 17 I was crossing the border to go shop. 2 of my friends got busted 1 had weed(I didn't know), 1 had fake IDs(being 17). Never had a a problem crossing and these guys go to the states with no problems no waivers nothing even tho they were found guilty and paid fines.
Used to work for Customs...

You @estevens have NO PROBLEMS BECAUSE YOU WERE UNDER AGE WHEN IT HAPPENED

Therefore your file / name doesn’t appear on the Police Datbase that is shared by Canada & US Customs

Acts / Crimes committed by Minors are sealed

Even so...

Let’s change the scenario...
Let’s say it was you who was busted for weed (drug possession) this is one reason you could be deemed INADMISSABLE TO THE USA... IF you were ever asked if you had an Arrest Record (all drug related charges in the USA are criminal... they don’t have a “simple” classification for possession like we do).

An arrest is enough to be deemed inadmissible
And when it comes to the USA ... Drugs is a huge issue

Drugs are a serious offence / crime in the USA (even simple possession) vs here
Just like, DUIs are criminal here but not in the USA

When it comes to Travellers, what matters most is the country & their laws you are wanting to gain access to

The OP does have a problem...

He no doubt has been flagged by US CBP for travelling with an person that they considered of interest... someone who was coming into their country illegally (without proper documentation to work)

Even if the OP was innocent and totally unknowing as to the Friends true intentions ... they are going to be red flagged by Customs on both sides of the border for the foreseeable future

IMO... they can forget about applying for a NEXUS Card... US CBP & Immigration is NEVER going to approve it... they just consider them too much of a risk / untrustworthy

As the saying goes... fair or not, sometimes you are judged by the company you keep
Banned
Oct 10, 2016
758 posts
333 upvotes
PointsHubby wrote: Used to work for Customs...

You @estevens have NO PROBLEMS BECAUSE YOU WERE UNDER AGE WHEN IT HAPPENED

Therefore your file / name doesn’t appear on the Police Datbase that is shared by Canada & US Customs

Acts / Crimes committed by Minors are sealed

Even so...

IF IT WAS YOU... who was busted for weed (drug possession) this is one reason you could be deemed INADMISSABLE TO THE USA... IF yo7 were ever asked if you had an Arrest Record (all drug related charges in the USA are criminal... they don’t have a “simple” classification for possession like we do).

Drugs are a serious offence / crime in the USA vs here
Just like, DUIs are criminal here but not in the USA

When it comes to Travellers, what matters most is the country & their laws you are wanting to gain access to

The OP does have a problem...

He no doubt has been flagged by US CBP for travelling with an person that they considered of interest... someone who was coming into their country illegally (without proper documentation to work)

Even if the OP was innocent and totally unknowing as to the Friends true intentions ... they are going to be red flagged by Customs on both sides of the border for the foreseeable future

IMO... they can forget about applying for a NEXUS Card... US CBP & Immigration is NEVER going to approve it... they just consider them too much of a risk / untrustworthy

As the saying goes... fair or not, sometimes you are judged by the company you keep
Thanks for clarifying
Deal Expert
Oct 6, 2005
16616 posts
2318 upvotes
ssstar wrote: Thanks for the feedback, I really appreciate it! I'm just wondering if I should make a day trip before actually applying to see whether I get stopped or not!
It's random - your file is now marked, it's up to the computer/agent to pull you for secondary.

Doing a "test run" won't tell you anything.
[OP]
Newbie
Jul 6, 2015
11 posts
Nepean, ON
PointsHubby wrote: Used to work for Customs...

You @estevens have NO PROBLEMS BECAUSE YOU WERE UNDER AGE WHEN IT HAPPENED

Therefore your file / name doesn’t appear on the Police Datbase that is shared by Canada & US Customs

Acts / Crimes committed by Minors are sealed

Even so...

Let’s change the scenario...
Let’s say it was you who was busted for weed (drug possession) this is one reason you could be deemed INADMISSABLE TO THE USA... IF you were ever asked if you had an Arrest Record (all drug related charges in the USA are criminal... they don’t have a “simple” classification for possession like we do).

An arrest is enough to be deemed inadmissible
And when it comes to the USA ... Drugs is a huge issue

Drugs are a serious offence / crime in the USA (even simple possession) vs here
Just like, DUIs are criminal here but not in the USA

When it comes to Travellers, what matters most is the country & their laws you are wanting to gain access to

The OP does have a problem...

He no doubt has been flagged by US CBP for travelling with an person that they considered of interest... someone who was coming into their country illegally (without proper documentation to work)

Even if the OP was innocent and totally unknowing as to the Friends true intentions ... they are going to be red flagged by Customs on both sides of the border for the foreseeable future

IMO... they can forget about applying for a NEXUS Card... US CBP & Immigration is NEVER going to approve it... they just consider them too much of a risk / untrustworthy

As the saying goes... fair or not, sometimes you are judged by the company you keep
Does this permanently remain on your travel record or does it ease off after a while? Also how would this impact visa applications to countries such as New Zealand, Australia or the UK? Are there any implications on that?

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