Hongjiang Chuai v. Jefferson Sessions

NOT FOR PUBLICATION FILED UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS JAN 5 2018 MOLLY C. DWYER, CLERK U.S. COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE NINTH CIRCUIT HONGJIANG CHUAI, No. 14-73488 Petitioner, Agency No. A087-716-949 v. MEMORANDUM* JEFFERSON B. SESSIONS III, Attorney General, Respondent. On Petition for Review of an Order of the Board of Immigration Appeals Submitted December 8, 2017** Pasadena, California Before: KELLY,*** CALLAHAN, and BEA, Circuit Judges. Hongjiang Chuai (“Chuai”) timely appeals the decision of the Board of Immigration Appeals (“BIA”) which upheld the Immigration Judge’s (“IJ”) denial * This disposition is not appropriate for publication and is not precedent except as provided by Ninth Circuit Rule 36-3. ** The panel unanimously concludes this case is suitable for decision without oral argument. See Fed. R. App. P. 34(a)(2). *** The Honorable Paul J. Kelly, Jr., United States Circuit Judge for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, sitting by designation. of his asylum and withholding of removal claims.1 We have jurisdiction under 8 U.S.C. § 1252(a). Reviewing the BIA’s legal conclusions de novo, see Baballah v. Ashcroft, 367 F.3d 1067, 1073 (9th Cir. 2004), and its factual findings for substantial evidence, see Zhi v. Holder, 751 F.3d 1088, 1091 (9th Cir. 2014), we deny Chuai’s petition for review.2 1. The BIA correctly reasoned that, consistent with Ren v. Holder, 648 F.3d 1079 (9th Cir. 2011), Chuai had ample notice and opportunity to respond to the IJ’s demands for corroborative evidence. Ren held that if the IJ requires corroborative evidence, then “the IJ must give the applicant notice of the corroboration that is required and an opportunity either to produce the requisite corroborative evidence or to explain why that evidence is not reasonably available.” Id. at 1093. The evidence—supportive letters from his churches in California and China and from family members—was available to Chuai. On remand, Chuai failed to proffer such evidence or seek leave to do so. Thus, the BIA’s decision on remand complied with our mandate. 1 Although Chuai claimed asylum, withholding of removal, and relief under the Convention Against Torture (“CAT”) before the IJ, he dropped the CAT claim before the BIA. Moreover, Chuai has “not specifically and distinctly argued” the CAT claim “in [his] opening brief.” United States v. Mateo-Mendez, 215 F.3d 1039, 1043 (9th Cir. 2000) (citation and internal quotation marks omitted). Therefore, the CAT claim is not before us. 2 As the parties are familiar with the facts and procedural history, we restate them only as necessary to explain our decision. 2 2. Consistent with due process and 8 C.F.R. § 1003.29’s “good cause” requirement, the IJ denied Chuai’s third request for a continuance, only after he already was allowed 1.5 years to provide his corroborating evidence showing religious persecution. Chuai claims that he had not obtained translations of these documents. But Chuai waited until the merits hearing to make his third request for a continuance; and he has not, in the six years since his merits hearing or the eight years since ...

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