Jose Candelario UITZ-GONGORA, aka Jose Candelarlio-Utiz, Petitioner, v. William P. BARR, Attorney General, Respondent.
Decided: December 08, 2020
Before: WALLACE, CLIFTON, and BRESS, Circuit Judges.
Monica Ganjoo, Esquire, Attorney, Ganjoo Law Corporation, San Francisco, CA, for Petitioner Chief Counsel ICE, Office of the Chief Counsel, Department of Homeland Security, San Francisco, CA, Lisa Morinelli, Attorney, Julia Tyler, Esquire, DOJ - U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Division/Office of Immigration Litigation, Washington, DC, for Respondent
Jose Candelario Uitz-Gongora, a native and citizen of Mexico, petitions for review of the Board of Immigration Appeals’ (“BIA”) order dismissing his appeal from an immigration judge's decision denying his application for withholding of removal and relief under the Convention Against Torture (“CAT”). We have jurisdiction under 8 U.S.C. § 1252. We review de novo the legal question of whether a particular social group is cognizable, except to the extent that deference is owed to the BIA's interpretation of the governing statutes and regulations. Conde Quevedo v. Barr, 947 F.3d 1238, 1241-42 (9th Cir. 2020). We review for factual findings for substantial evidence. Id. at 1241. We deny the petition for review.
The BIA did not err in concluding that Uitz-Gongora failed to establish membership in a cognizable social group. See Reyes v. Lynch, 842 F.3d 1125, 1131 (9th Cir. 2016) (in order to demonstrate membership in a particular social group, “[t]he applicant must ‘establish that the group is (1) composed of members who share a common immutable characteristic, (2) defined with particularity, and (3) socially distinct within the society in question’ ” (quoting Matter of M-E-V-G-, 26 I. & N. Dec. 227, 237 (BIA 2014))); see also Ramirez-Munoz v. Lynch, 816 F.3d 1226, 1229 (9th Cir. 2016) (concluding “imputed wealthy Americans” returning to Mexico did not constitute a particular social group); Delgado-Ortiz v. Holder, 600 F.3d 1148, 1151-52 (9th Cir. 2010) (concluding “returning Mexicans from the United States” was overbroad and did not constitute a particular social group).
Substantial evidence supports the determination that Uitz-Gongora otherwise failed to demonstrate a nexus between the harm he experienced or fears in Mexico and a protected ground. See Zetino v. Holder, 622 F.3d 1007, 1016 (9th Cir. 2010) (an applicant's “desire to be free from harassment by criminals motivated by theft or random violence by gang members bears no nexus to a protected ground”); Barrios v. Holder, 581 F.3d 849, 856 (9th Cir. 2009) (political opinion claim failed where petitioner did not present sufficient evidence of political or ideological opposition to the gang's ideals or that the gang imputed a particular political belief to the petitioner).
Thus, Uitz-Gongora's withholding of removal claim fails.
Substantial evidence also supports the BIA's denial of CAT relief because Uitz-Gongora failed to show it is more likely than not he would be tortured by or with the consent or acquiescence of the government if returned to Mexico. See Wakkary v. Holder, 558 F.3d 1049, 1067-68 (9th Cir. 2009) (no likelihood of torture).
The record does not support Uitz-Gongora's contentions that the IJ and BIA failed to consider evidence, ignored arguments, or otherwise erred in their analyses of his claims. See Najmabadi v. Holder, 597 F.3d 983, 990 (9th Cir. 2010) (the BIA need not write an exegesis on every contention); Fernandez v. Gonzales, 439 F.3d 592, 603 (9th Cir. 2006) (petitioner did not overcome the presumption that the BIA reviewed the record).
As stated in the Court's July 29, 2019 order, the temporary stay of removal remains in place until issuance of the mandate.
PETITION FOR REVIEW DENIED.
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