Perez-Hernandez v. Garland

Case: 20-61136 Document: 00516501565 Page: 1 Date Filed: 10/07/2022 United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit United States Court of Appeals Fifth Circuit No. 20-61136 Summary Calendar FILED October 7, 2022 Lyle W. Cayce Pedro Perez-Hernandez, Clerk Petitioner, versus Merrick Garland, U.S. Attorney General, Respondent. Petition for Review of an Order of the Board of Immigration Appeals BIA No. A035 303 094 Before Southwick, Oldham, and Wilson, Circuit Judges. Per Curiam:* Pedro Perez-Hernandez petitions this court for review of the order by the Board of Immigration Appeals denying his motion to reopen or reconsider his removal proceedings and determining that he has not * Pursuant to 5th Circuit Rule 47.5, the court has determined that this opinion should not be published and is not precedent except under the limited circumstances set forth in 5th Circuit Rule 47.5.4. Case: 20-61136 Document: 00516501565 Page: 2 Date Filed: 10/07/2022 No. 20-61136 established derivative United States citizenship. We DISMISS in part and DENY in part the petition. FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND In January 1976, Pedro Perez-Hernandez, a native and citizen of Mexico, was admitted into the United States as a lawful permanent resident. In November 2012, Perez-Hernandez was convicted in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Alabama for the offense of Felon in Possession of a Firearm, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(1). In 2014, the Department of Homeland Security (“DHS”) served Perez-Hernandez with a Notice to Appear (“NTA”) and filed it with the immigration court. He was charged with being removable under 8 U.S.C. § 1227(a)(2)(C) as an alien convicted of a firearms offense after admission. On January 5, 2015, Perez-Hernandez, proceeding pro se, admitted the allegations in the NTA. At first, he admitted he was not a citizen or national of the United States, but then he argued he was an American citizen. The immigration judge (“IJ”) continued the case to allow Perez-Hernandez to develop his citizenship claim. On January 15, 2015, based on DHS’s submission of conviction records, the IJ found Perez-Hernandez was removable as charged in the NTA. DHS stated that in October 1992, an IJ granted Perez-Hernandez’s application for a waiver pursuant to what is now Section 1182(c) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (“INA”), which made him ineligible for cancellation of removal. See 8 U.S.C. § 1229b(c)(6). Perez-Hernandez then sought asylum, withholding of removal, and protection under the regulations implementing the United Nations Convention Against Torture (“CAT”) because he feared returning to Mexico. He reasoned, “it’s been a very long time since [he had] been in Mexico,” and he heard there was “a lot of violence [in Mexico], especially in Matamoros.” 2 Case: 20-61136 Document: 00516501565 Page: 3 Date Filed: 10/07/2022 No. 20-61136 Throughout his immigration proceedings, Perez-Hernandez proceeded pro se. The transcripts demonstrate he generally struggled with understanding and interpreting key legal concepts. Most importantly, Perez- Hernandez demonstrated difficulty in understanding how to verify if he is a citizen based on his purported adoption by an American citizen. He became …

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