Salifu Jatta v. Merrick Garland

NOT RECOMMENDED FOR PUBLICATION File Name: 22a0380n.06 No. 21-3584 UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FILED Sep 21, 2022 FOR THE SIXTH CIRCUIT DEBORAH S. HUNT, Clerk ) SALIFU JATTA, ) Petitioner, ) ON PETITION FOR REVIEW ) FROM THE UNITED STATES v. ) BOARD OF IMMIGRATION ) APPEALS MERRICK B. GARLAND, Attorney General, ) Respondent. ) OPINION ) Before: BATCHELDER, GRIFFIN, and KETHLEDGE, Circuit Judges. PER CURIAM. Salifu Jatta, a native and citizen of The Gambia, petitions this court for review of an order of the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) denying his motion to remand for a mental competency hearing and summarily dismissing his appeal from the denial of his application for asylum, withholding of removal, and protection under the Convention Against Torture (CAT). As set forth below, we DENY Jatta’s petition for review. Jatta entered the United States in August 2012 as a B-1/B-2 visitor with authorization to remain for a six-month period; he remained beyond that period without authorization. In October 2020, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) served Jatta with a notice to appear in removal proceedings, charging him as removable for having remained in the United States for a time longer than permitted. See 8 U.S.C. § 1227(a)(1)(B). The DHS later added three more charges of removability: Jatta had been convicted of (1) a crime involving moral turpitude within five years after his admission, (2) two crimes involving moral turpitude not arising out of a single scheme of No. 21-3584, Jatta v. Garland criminal misconduct, and (3) a controlled substance offense. See 8 U.S.C. § 1227(a)(2)(A)(i)-(ii), (a)(2)(B)(i). An immigration judge (IJ) sustained the charges after Jatta, appearing pro se, admitted the factual allegations underlying them. Jatta submitted an application for asylum, withholding of removal, and CAT protection. At the hearing on his application, Jatta, who remained unrepresented, asserted that he feared returning to The Gambia for two reasons: (1) the current political regime might harm him based on his family’s ties to the former president, and (2) his criminal record in the United States might subject him to harm in a Muslim country where such crimes are not tolerated. Jatta, along with four other witnesses, testified in support of his application. At the conclusion of the hearing, the IJ issued an oral decision denying Jatta’s application. The IJ determined that Jatta’s asylum application was untimely, that his claims for withholding of removal and CAT protection lacked any evidence to corroborate the testimony presented by him and his witnesses, and that his claim for CAT protection was not “cognizable.” Jatta initially stated that he would appeal the IJ’s decision but, after a brief recess, indicated that he no longer wished to appeal. The IJ confirmed that Jatta did not wish to appeal and that he accepted the IJ’s decision as a final decision. Despite his waiver of the right to appeal, Jatta, then proceeding through counsel, filed a notice of appeal with the BIA. Jatta subsequently filed a motion to remand his case to the IJ …

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