Did Ruth Luevanos Practice Law Without a License?

If you've been paying attention to Ruth Luevanos' nascent (or is it?) political career, you might be under the impression that she is a licensed attorney. There are a lot of questions about exactly what her status is, but we know she never took or passed the California State Bar - even though she claimed on July 29 to have "defended immigrants" at Terminal Island.

At the conclusion of the public comments section, Luevanos was given a chance to reply.

Here is a transcript of her comments (emphasis added):

My response to tonight's public comments will be brief, so as not to violate the Brown Act, which governs City Council communications that are non-agendized, so I have literally 90 seconds.

I'd like to start by thanking everyone who took the time to engage in civil discourse for coming out this evening, for engaging in Democracy, because that's what this is. This is Democracy.  And I thank you, all of you, for coming out. Whether you agree or disagree with me, I thank you for participating.

There were several quotes that were -- that stood out to me. One was, what is essential in this city is kindness. I agree. What is essential in this city is kindness. Kindness to each other. We are all human beings. We are all entitled to rights.

I do come from a place of experience. I have been an immigration advocate for over 20 years. I graduated from law school, and while I was in law school I went down to Terminal Island in San Pedro and I defended immigrants in detention facilities. I was with asylum seekers who were in federal maximum security penitentiaries for nine years seeking the right to declare asylum. And they were in federal penitentiaries. Their only crime was seeking asylum from countries who would not take them and our country would not accept them, and yet they were serving time in federal penitentiaries for nine years --

(Interrupted by City Attorney for time)

I want to thank you for coming out, and I will continue to use my public office for public good.

Well, that's interesting. It certainly gives the impression that in her video she was using specialized knowledge and giving legal advice to illegal immigrants.

It's also a bit incredible, to hear a tale of someone being locked up in a maximum security federal penitentiary for nine years simply for requesting asylum. It would seem that a story like that would be all over the news. Also, FCI Terminal Island is a low security federal prison, not maximum security.

Something's not adding up here - and we don't think that Common Core math is going to help us figure it out.