Marcellin Djoumgoue v. Michael Mukasey

Filing 920080825

Opinion

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UNPUBLISHED UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE FOURTH CIRCUIT No. 08-1047 MARCELLIN W. DJOUMGOUE, Petitioner, v. MICHAEL B. MUKASEY, Attorney General of the United States, Respondent. On Petition for Review of an Order of the Board of Immigration Appeals. Submitted: July 31, 2008 Decided: August 25, 2008 Before NIEMEYER, MICHAEL, and MOTZ, Circuit Judges. Petition denied by unpublished per curiam opinion. Ana T. Jacobs, ANA T. JACOBS & ASSOCIATES, P.C., Washington, D.C., for Petitioner. Gregory G. Katsas, Assistant Attorney General, John S. Hogan, Senior Litigation Counsel, Jaesa Woods McLin, Office of Immigration Litigation, UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE, Washington, D.C., for Respondent. Unpublished opinions are not binding precedent in this circuit. PER CURIAM: Marcellin W. Djoumgoue, a native and citizen of Cameroon, petitions for review of an order of the Board of Immigration Appeals ("Board") dismissing his appeal from the immigration judge's order denying his applications for asylum, withholding from removal ("CAT"). and withholding under the Convention erred Against in Torture the Djoumgoue claims the Board adopting immigration judge's adverse credibility finding. He also claims he submitted substantial evidence entitling him to asylum. In addition, Djoumgoue challenges the Board's denial of his motion to file a brief out of time and his subsequent motion for reconsideration of the denial. petition for review. Finding no error, we deny the The INA authorizes the Attorney General to confer asylum on any refugee. 8 U.S.C. 1158(a) (2006). It defines a refugee as a person unwilling or unable to return to his native country "because of persecution or a well-founded fear of persecution on account of race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion." (2006). 8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(42)(A) "Persecution involves the infliction or threat of death, torture, or injury to one's person or freedom, on account of one of the enumerated grounds . . . ." Li v. Gonzales, 405 F.3d 171, 177 (4th Cir. 2005) (internal quotation marks and citations omitted). - 2 - An alien "bear[s] the burden of proving eligibility for asylum," Naizgi v. Gonzales, 455 F.3d 484, 486 (4th Cir. 2006) (citing 8 C.F.R. 1208.13(a) (2008)), and can establish refugee status based on past persecution in his native country on account of a protected ground. 8 C.F.R. 1208.13(b)(1). "An applicant who demonstrates that he was the subject of past persecution is presumed to have a well-founded fear of persecution." Ashcroft, 371 F.3d 182, 187 (4th Cir. 2004). Ngarurih v. Without regard to past persecution, an alien can establish a well-founded fear of persecution on a protected ground. fear standard contains both a Id. at 187. subjective The well-founded an objective and component. concrete The objective element requires a showing of specific, that would lead a reasonable person in like facts circumstances to fear persecution. 445 F.3d 351, 353 (4th Cir. 2006). Gandziami-Mickhou v. Gonzales, "The subjective component can be met through the presentation of candid, credible, and sincere testimony demonstrating a genuine fear of persecution. . . . [It] must have some basis in the reality of the circumstances and be validated with specific, concrete facts . . . and it cannot be mere irrational apprehension." Li, 405 F.3d at 176 (internal quotation marks, alterations, and citations omitted). Credibility evidence. findings are reviewed for substantial A trier of fact who rejects an applicant's testimony on credibility grounds must offer "specific, cogent reason[s]" for - 3 - doing so. Figeroa v. INS, 886 F.2d 76, 78 (4th Cir. 1989) This court (internal quotation marks and citations omitted). accords broad, though not unlimited, deference to credibility findings supported by substantial evidence. 378 F.3d 361, 367 (4th Cir. 2004). Camara v. Ashcroft, If the immigration judge's adverse credibility finding is based on speculation and conjecture rather than specific and cogent reasoning, however, it is not supported by substantial evidence. 533, 538 (4th Cir. 2006). A determination regarding eligibility for asylum or Tewabe v. Gonzales, 446 F.3d withholding of removal is affirmed if supported by substantial evidence on the record considered as a whole. INS v. Elias-Zacarias, 502 U.S. 478, 481 (1992). Administrative findings of fact are conclusive unless any reasonable adjudicator would be compelled to decide to the contrary. (2006). 8 U.S.C. 1252(b)(4)(B) This court will reverse the Board only if "the evidence . . . presented was so compelling that no reasonable factfinder could fail to find the requisite fear of persecution." Elias-Zacarias, 502 U.S. at 483-84; see also Rusu v. INS, 296 F.3d 316, 325 n.14 (4th Cir. 2002). We find substantial evidence supports the immigration judge's adverse credibility finding. The immigration judge provided specific and cogent reasons for finding Djoumgoue not credible and the record does not compel a different result. - 4 - We further find no abuse of discretion in the Board's order denying Djoumgoue's request to file a brief out of time. Insofar as he claimed he was denied due process, we find he failed to establish any prejudice. See Rusu, 296 F.3d at 324; Farrokhi v. Despite Djoumgoue's INS, 900 F.2d 697, 703 n.7 (4th Cir. 1990). failure to file a timely brief, the Board reviewed the merits of the appeal. Djoumgoue failed to indicate what issues were ignored because the Board did not have his brief. Accordingly, we deny the petition for review. We dispense with oral argument because the facts and legal contentions are adequately presented in the materials before the court and argument would not aid the decisional process. PETITION DENIED - 5 -

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