Pargev Chamichyan v. Jefferson Sessions

FILED NOT FOR PUBLICATION OCT 11 2017 UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS MOLLY C. DWYER, CLERK U.S. COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE NINTH CIRCUIT PARGEV CHAMICHYAN, No. 14-71257 Petitioner, Agency No. A095-014-196 v. MEMORANDUM* JEFFERSON B. SESSIONS III, Attorney General, Respondent. On Petition for Review of an Order of the Board of Immigration Appeals Submitted October 6, 2017** Pasadena, California Before: KLEINFELD, GRABER, and CHRISTEN, Circuit Judges. Because Chamichyan’s application for asylum was filed in 2007, the REAL ID Act’s standards for credibility and burden of proof govern this case. Under the REAL ID Act, a credibility determination is based on “the totality of the * 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). circumstances, and all relevant factors,” which may include the applicant’s demeanor and candor, the plausibility of his account, the consistency between his written and oral statements, the internal consistency of his statements, and any inaccuracies or falsehoods in these statements. See 8 U.S.C. § 1158(b)(1)(B)(iii). The REAL ID act does not require inconsistencies to “go to the heart of the petitioner’s claim,” but “when an inconsistency is at the heart of the claim it doubtless is of great weight.” Shrestha v. Holder, 590 F.3d 1034, 1046–47 (9th Cir. 2010). “We review factual findings of the IJ and BIA under the substantial evidence standard. That is, we must sustain factual findings if supported by reasonable, substantial, and probative evidence in the record.” Melkonian v. Ashcroft, 320 F.3d 1061, 1065 (9th Cir. 2003) (citation and internal quotation marks omitted). The IJ and BIA denied Chamichyan’s applications for asylum and withholding of removal because they found that Chamichyan was not a credible witness. Chamichyan argues that this finding was not supported by substantial evidence. We disagree. Chamichyan offered his membership card in the Armenian People’s Party as documentary evidence to support his application. He asserted that he had personally obtained the card, that the information on it was correct, and that it had 2 been in his continuous possession since he received it in 2005. But a forensic document examiner determined that the card was fraudulent. The IJ further found that Chamichyan’s direct testimony contained material inconsistencies and omissions. Inconsistencies between Chamichyan’s written application and his testimony include whether government officials beat his wife; whether his home and that of his son were searched; whether government agents interrogated him and his son; and whether someone shot at him. These omissions and inconsistencies directly relate to Chamichyan’s claim that he was targeted for his whistleblowing activities, and we cannot say that the findings of the IJ or the BIA were not supported by reasonable evidence. See Farah v. Ashcroft, 348 F3d 1153, 1156 (9th Cir. 2003). Chamichyan introduced two pieces of documentary evidence to corroborate his claim: an ultrasound report from the Armenia Medical Diagnostic Center purporting to show ...

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