Jesse James HURST, Petitioner, v. William P. BARR, Attorney General, Respondent.
Decided: August 19, 2020
Before: TROTT, SILVERMAN, and N.R. SMITH, Circuit Judges.
Joshua Effron, Attorney, Immigrant Rep, Inc., Rolling Hills Estates, CA, for Petitioner Todd J. Cochran, DOJ - U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Division/Office of Immigration Litigation, Washington, DC, Chief Counsel ICE, Office of the Chief Counsel, Department of Homeland Security, San Francisco, CA, for Respondent
Jesse James Hurst, a native and citizen of Honduras, petitions for review of the Board of Immigration Appeals’ (“BIA”) order dismissing his appeal from an immigration judge's (“IJ”) decision denying his application for asylum, withholding of removal, cancellation of removal, and protection under the Convention Against Torture (“CAT”).
Our jurisdiction is governed by 8 U.S.C. § 1252. We review for substantial evidence the agency's factual findings, applying the standards governing adverse credibility determinations under the REAL ID Act. Shrestha v. Holder, 590 F.3d 1034, 1039-40 (9th Cir. 2010). We dismiss in part and deny in part the petition for review.
In his appeal to the BIA, Hurst did not challenge the IJ's determinations that because of his criminal history he is ineligible for asylum, withholding of removal, and cancellation of removal. We therefore lack jurisdiction to consider those claims. See Barron v. Ashcroft, 358 F.3d 674, 677-78 (9th Cir. 2004).
As to Hurst's claim for CAT protection, substantial evidence supports the agency's adverse credibility determination. That evidence includes Hurst's false representations during one of his immigration proceedings that he was a citizen of Mexico. When Hurst made those representations, he had been in the United States for several years. He was neither in flight from Honduras nor trying to secure his entry into the United States. Cf. Singh v. Holder, 643 F.3d 1178, 1181 (9th Cir. 2011) (“[A] genuine refugee escaping persecution may lie about his citizenship to immigration officials in order to flee his place of persecution or secure entry into the United States,” but when a person otherwise chooses to lie to immigration authorities, “[t]hat always counts as substantial evidence supporting an adverse credibility determination.”).
Hurst's explanations for those representations and the otherwise inconsistent claims for relief that he raised over the course of his multiple immigration proceedings do not compel a contrary conclusion. See Zamanov v. Holder, 649 F.3d 969, 974 (9th Cir. 2011) (“[T]he record does not compel the finding that the IJ's unwillingness to believe this explanation ․ was erroneous.”). In the absence of credible testimony, Hurst failed to establish his eligibility for CAT protection. See Shrestha, 590 F.3d at 1049.
PETITION FOR REVIEW DISMISSED in part; DENIED in part.
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