FOR REVIEW OF AN ORDER OF THE BOARD OF IMMIGRATION
Theodore J. Murphy on brief for petitioner.
A. Readler, Acting Assistant Attorney General, Civil
Division, Eric W. Marsteller, Senior Litigation Counsel,
Office of Immigration Litigation, and Rosanne M. Perry, Trial
Attorney, U.S. Department of Justice, Civil---Division,
Office of Immigration Litigation, on brief for respondent.
Howard, Chief Judge, Selya, Circuit Judge, and McConnell,
District Judge. [**]
MCCONNELL, District Judge.
petitioner, Juan Manuel Sánchez-Romero
(Sánchez), seeks review of the Board of Immigration
Appeals' (BIA) denial of his untimely motion to reopen
removal proceedings based on changed conditions. Because we
do not spot an abuse of discretion, Sánchez's
petition is denied.
a Mexican national, entered the United States via Douglas,
Arizona, in April 2003, without admission or parole. On
October 17, 2009, United States Customs and Border Protection
officers encountered Sánchez at the Luiz Muñoz
Marín International Airport in San Juan, Puerto Rico.
That day, Sánchez was served with a Notice to Appear,
charging him with removability under 8 U.S.C. §
1182(a)(6)(A)(i), for being present in the United States
without being admitted or paroled. In addition,
Sánchez was charged with removability under 8 U.S.C.
§ 1182(a)(6)(C)(ii), for falsely representing that he
was a citizen of the United States, and 8 U.S.C. §
1182(a)(7)(A)(i)(I), for not possessing a valid, unexpired
entry document at the time of application for admission.
November 10, 2009, Sánchez had a hearing before an
immigration judge, where he conceded the charge of
removability under 8 U.S.C. § 1182(a)(6)(A)(i) but
denied the charges under 8 U.S.C. § 1182(a)(6)(C)(ii)
and 8 U.S.C. § 1182(a)(7)(A)(i)(I).
half of a year later, Sánchez applied for asylum,
withholding of removal, and protection under the Convention
Against Torture (CAT), and on March 24, 2011, he amended his
application. In his application, Sánchez stated his
fear of criminal gangs (a.k.a. Drug Trafficking Organizations
or "DTOs") and the Mexican army, from which
Sánchez abandoned his post due to corruption.
to Sánchez's petition, the criminal gangs killed
his brother and sister, and the gangs would target him as
well. Sánchez's sister was killed for testifying
against a member of a criminal gang, resulting in the gang
member's imprisonment. The petition does not state the
reason for the death of Sánchez's brother, but it
does say that the killer had disappeared. Sánchez also
feared that, upon return to Mexico, the gangs would mistake
him for a relative of Mariano Rivera, a former baseball
player for the New York Yankees, whose family Sánchez
befriended. These gangs would, Sánchez thinks, kidnap,
extort, and torture him.
addition to fearing the criminal gangs, Sánchez also
believed that he would be harmed by the Mexican army. A
sergeant in the army forced Sánchez into dealing
drugs, and when Sánchez later refused, he was beaten.
As a result of this corruption and abuse, Sánchez left
the army. His petition stated his belief that there would be
consequences for leaving the army, including torture.
immigration judge conducted a merits hearing and denied
Sánchez's petition on June 7, 2011. Shortly
thereafter, on July 5, 2011, Sánchez appealed the
immigration judge's denial. And on March 11, 2013, the
BIA, after review, denied Sánchez's appeal. No
immediate action was taken by Sánchez.
August 25, 2016, more than three years after the BIA denied
Sánchez's petition, he moved to reopen removal
proceedings. In his motion to reopen, Sánchez argued
that even though his motion is untimely, his petition to
reopen should be granted because the conditions in his home
country have deteriorated and intensified. Those purported
changed conditions consist of an increase in crime and
kidnappings, an increase in power wielded by the DTOs who now
operate as a de facto government, and an increase in violence
against those who oppose the DTOs. And ...