Aaron Lamas Monroy v. Merrick Garland

NOT FOR PUBLICATION FILED UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS AUG 12 2022 MOLLY C. DWYER, CLERK U.S. COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE NINTH CIRCUIT AARON LAMAS MONROY, No. 20-72741 Petitioner, Agency No. A079-387-054 v. MEMORANDUM* MERRICK B. GARLAND, Attorney General, Respondent. On Petition for Review of an Order of the Board of Immigration Appeals Submitted August 5, 2022** Pasadena, California Before: SILER,*** CALLAHAN, and FORREST, Circuit Judges. Petitioner Aaron Lamas Monroy (“Petitioner” or “Monroy”), a native and citizen of Mexico, appeals a final order issued by the Board of Immigration * 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). *** The Honorable Eugene E. Siler, United States Circuit Judge for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, sitting by designation. Appeals (“BIA”). Our jurisdiction is governed by 8 U.S.C. § 1252. We deny the petition. The BIA found that in the absence of credible testimony, Monroy did not establish his eligibility for withholding of removal and protection under the Convention Against Torture (“CAT”). This decision is supported by substantial evidence. Monroy claims he is entitled to withholding of removal because he allegedly suffered persecution at the hands of Mexican police, and CAT relief because he is likely to be tortured if he returns to Mexico. Factual findings are reviewed under the substantial evidence standard, “treating them as ‘conclusive unless any reasonable adjudicator would be compelled to conclude to the contrary.’” Lopez- Cardona v. Holder, 662 F.3d 1110, 1111 (9th Cir. 2011) (quoting 8 U.S.C. § 1252(b)(4)(B)). 1. Preceding his general challenge, Monroy argues that he was wrongly denied a competency hearing during his removal proceedings. We review this issue for abuse of discretion. See Mejia v. Sessions, 868 F.3d 1118, 1121 (9th Cir. 2017). Monroy contends he was entitled to a competency hearing because of his alleged mental disorder. Notably, he did not affirmatively request a hearing, nor did he present indicia of incompetency. In effect, Monroy argues that the mere existence of his alleged mental disorder provides evidence that he was wrongly deprived a competency hearing prior to an adverse credibility finding. 2 While this court has recognized an Immigration Judge’s (“IJ”) duty to provide a petitioner a competency hearing when that petitioner exhibits indicia of incompetency, that duty did not arise here because Monroy lacked such indicia. See Calderon-Rodriguez v. Sessions, 878 F.3d 1179, 1181–82 (9th Cir. 2018); see also Mejia, 868 F.3d at 1121–22. The psychological report submitted by Monroy offers nothing to suggest that his testimony was impaired by his mental disorder; in fact, it stated “[h]is overall cognitive abilities appeared intact.” A claim of mental illness, or a diagnosis of the same, does not automatically equate to a lack of competency. Cf. Salgado v. Sessions, 889 F.3d 982, 987–88 (9th Cir. 2018) (finding that the agency did not err by denying continuance …

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