Rigoberto Alvarez-Nunez v. Jefferson Sessions

NOT FOR PUBLICATION FILED UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS MAR 20 2018 MOLLY C. DWYER, CLERK U.S. COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE NINTH CIRCUIT RIGOBERTO ALVAREZ-NUNEZ, No. 14-71273 Petitioner, Agency No. A070-162-565 v. MEMORANDUM* JEFFERSON B. SESSIONS III, Attorney General, Respondent. On Petition for Review of an Order of the Board of Immigration Appeals Argued and Submitted February 6, 2018 Seattle, Washington Before: M. SMITH and MURGUIA, Circuit Judges, and ROBRENO,** District Judge. Rigoberto Alvarez-Nunez (“Alvarez”) petitions for review of the decision of the Board of Immigration Appeals (“the BIA”) dismissing his appeal from the Immigration Judge’s (“IJ”) decision denying Alvarez’s application for withholding of removal under 8 U.S.C. § 1231(b)(3) and relief under the Convention Against * This disposition is not appropriate for publication and is not precedent except as provided by Ninth Circuit Rule 36-3. ** The Honorable Eduardo C. Robreno, United States District Judge for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, sitting by designation. Torture (“the CAT”). We have jurisdiction over the petition for review of the BIA’s decision under 8 U.S.C. § 1252. We deny the petition. 1. Substantial evidence in the record supports the BIA’s conclusion that Alvarez failed to establish a clear probability of future persecution on account of his membership in the particular social group of male relatives of his paternal grandfather. See 8 C.F.R. § 1208.16(b)(2).1 Alvarez believes that Mexican drug cartels have retaliated against male members of his family because of his paternal grandfather’s local law enforcement role in Mexico decades ago and that they will retaliate against him if he returns to Mexico. In support of his claim, Alvarez points to (1) the execution-style murders of his grandfather and six male family members by unknown assailants; and (2) three anonymous threats Alvarez received in Mexico in 2007 stating that he would be killed if he did not leave town. The facts Alvarez identifies do not establish that Alvarez’s familial membership would be “a reason” for his feared future persecution.2 Barajas- 1 The BIA assumed, without deciding, that Alvarez established that he was a member of a protected particular social group. Because we find that substantial evidence supports the BIA’s conclusion that Alvarez failed to demonstrate a clear probability of future persecution based on his asserted particular social group, we need not decide whether male members of a family constitute a protected particular social group that may form the basis for withholding of removal under 8 U.S.C. § 1231(b)(3). 2 Although the BIA applied the “one central reason” standard as opposed to the proper “a reason” standard, see Barajas-Romero v. Lynch, 846 F.3d 351, 360 2 14-71273 Romero v. Lynch, 846 F.3d 351, 360 (9th Cir. 2017); see also 8 U.S.C. § 1231(b)(3)(A). Alvarez has not introduced any evidence indicating that his six male family members were murdered because of their membership in Alvarez’s proposed particular social group. The circumstances of the murders – which occurred over the span of thirteen years in different areas of Mexico – do not provide any ...

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