The Americans have a zero tolerance at the border for visitors with a criminal record.
Each week we receive hundreds of emails and calls from people who have been denied entry to the US due to a past criminal offence. Once you are in the US system, you will need a US Entry Waiver to return to the US.
Even if you have been fingerprinted by the police and the charges were later withdrawn, stayed, peace bond, conditional or absolute discharge, the Americans can still see you have been in trouble and question you about it.
If you have never been denied entry to the US, once your pardon or record suspension is granted you will be safe to travel.
Here is a thank you letter we recently received from a client we helped to obtain a pardon for a theft charge: