For Some Immigrants, Voting Is a Criminal Act

The way Joseph E. Joseph tells it, he was just doing his civic duty.

On his way home from work one evening in 1992, he came across a group of volunteers in Brooklyn registering people to vote. Mr. Joseph, a legal permanent resident who had immigrated from St. Kitts eight years earlier, decided it was time to sign up. He cast a ballot in that year's presidential election, he said, and in every one since.

His participation in American democracy came at a steep cost: The government is now trying to deport him.