Tianchi Zhang v. U.S. Attorney General

Case: 16-15618 Date Filed: 12/05/2017 Page: 1 of 6 [DO NOT PUBLISH] IN THE UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE ELEVENTH CIRCUIT ________________________ No. 16-15618 Non-Argument Calendar ________________________ Agency No. A088-483-671 TIANCHI ZHANG, Petitioner, versus U.S. ATTORNEY GENERAL, Respondent. ________________________ Petition for Review of a Decision of the Board of Immigration Appeals ________________________ (December 5, 2017) Before JORDAN, ROSENBAUM, and ANDERSON, Circuit Judges. PER CURIAM: Case: 16-15618 Date Filed: 12/05/2017 Page: 2 of 6 Tianchi Zhang, proceeding pro se, petitions for review of the Board of Immigration Appeals’ (“BIA”) final order affirming the Immigration Judge’s (“IJ”) denial of his application for asylum, withholding of removal, and relief under the Convention Against Torture (“CAT”). The BIA determined that Zhang waived any challenge to the IJ’s denial of his asylum claim based on political opinion, and it held that he failed to meet his burden of proving he was eligible for asylum based on religious persecution because he did not provide sufficient, reasonably available corroborating evidence. It held that he thus necessarily failed to meet his burden of proof for withholding of removal, and that he had presented no persuasive argument for reversing the IJ’s finding that he failed to prove he was eligible for CAT relief. When the BIA issues a decision, we review only that decision, except to the extent that the BIA expressly adopts the IJ’s decision. Al Najjar v. Ashcroft, 257 F.3d 1262, 1284 (11th Cir. 2001). Additionally, we “may review a final order of removal only if . . . the alien has exhausted all administrative remedies available to the alien as a matter of right.” Immigration and Nationality Act (“INA”) § 242(d)(1), 8 U.S.C. § 1252(d). The exhaustion requirement is jurisdictional and precludes review of claims not presented to the BIA. Amaya-Artunduaga v. U.S. Att’y Gen., 463 F.3d 1247, 1250 (11th Cir. 2006). Findings of the IJ not reached 2 Case: 16-15618 Date Filed: 12/05/2017 Page: 3 of 6 by the BIA are not properly before us. Gonzalez v. U.S. Att’y Gen., 820 F.3d 399, 403 (11th Cir. 2016). We review agency factual determinations under the substantial-evidence test, and we “must affirm the BIA’s decision if it is supported by reasonable, substantial, and probative evidence on the record considered as a whole.” Silva v. U.S. Att’y Gen., 448 F.3d 1229, 1236 (11th Cir. 2006) (quotation omitted). We may not reweigh the evidence from scratch; rather, we “view the record evidence in the light most favorable to the agency’s decision and draw all reasonable inferences in favor of that decision.” Id. Findings of fact may be reversed only if “the evidence compels a reasonable fact finder to find otherwise.” Chen v. U.S. Att’y Gen., 463 F.3d 1228, 1231 (11th Cir. 2006). To the extent that the BIA’s decision was based on a legal determination, we review it de novo. Silva, 448 F.3d at 1236. To meet the burden of establishing eligibility for asylum, an alien must, with credible evidence, establish (1) past persecution on account of ...

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