Sukhjivan Minhas v. Matthew Whitaker

NOT FOR PUBLICATION FILED UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS JAN 9 2019 MOLLY C. DWYER, CLERK U.S. COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE NINTH CIRCUIT SUKHJIVAN SINGH MINHAS, AKA No. 16-73025 Sonu, Agency No. A205-585-875 Petitioner, v. MEMORANDUM* MATTHEW G. WHITAKER, Acting Attorney General, Respondent. On Petition for Review of an Order of the Board of Immigration Appeals Argued and Submitted December 18, 2018 San Francisco, California Before: GOULD and BERZON, Circuit Judges, and BLOCK,** District Judge. Sukhjivan Singh Minhas, a native and citizen of India, petitions for review of an order of the Board of Immigration Appeals (“BIA”), denying his application for asylum, withholding of removal, and protection under the Convention Against * This disposition is not appropriate for publication and is not precedent except as provided by Ninth Circuit Rule 36-3. ** The Honorable Frederic Block, United States District Judge for the Eastern District of New York, sitting by designation. Torture (“CAT”). We review the agency’s findings for substantial evidence. Garcia-Milian v. Holder, 755 F.3d 1026, 1031 (9th Cir. 2014). We deny the petition with respect to his CAT claim, grant the petition with respect to his asylum claim, and remand for further proceedings on his withholding of removal claim and for the BIA to review the Immigration Judge’s (“IJ”) adverse credibility finding. 1. The BIA did not review the IJ’s adverse credibility finding, instead assuming Minhas’s credibility but denying his claims for relief on the merits. With respect to Minhas’s asylum and withholding of removal claims, the BIA held that Minhas has failed to present sufficient evidence of persecution. To demonstrate past persecution, an applicant must establish that “(1) his treatment rises to the level of persecution; (2) the persecution was on account of one or more protected grounds; and (3) the persecution was committed by the government, or by forces that the government was unable or unwilling to control.” Baghdasaryan v. Holder, 592 F.3d 1018, 1023 (9th Cir. 2010). Although persecution is “an extreme concept that does not include every sort of treatment our society regards as offensive,” Nagoulko v. I.N.S., 333 F.3d 1012, 1016 (9th Cir. 2003), “the cumulative effect of several incidents may constitute persecution,” Krotova v. Gonzales, 416 F.3d 1080, 1084 (9th Cir. 2005) (internal quotation marks omitted). As Minhas’s testimony, which was assumed to be credible indicates, the 2 Congress Party attacked him on multiple occasions, one of which left him injured and on bed rest for weeks. Minhas was also told in explicit terms during and after the attacks that he would be killed for his father’s political actions. Following the attacks and threats, his persecutors threw stones at his home and visited his job. Although each individual attack or threat made on the basis of his religion and imputed political opinion may have not risen to the level of persecution, the BIA’s decision did not meaningfully address the cumulative effect of these actions. Taking into account the cumulative effect of the attacks on and threats to Minhas, the BIA’s decision concerning ...

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