Origet v. United States
125 U.S. 240 (1888)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Origet v. United States, 125 U.S. 240 (1888)

Origet v. United States

No. 188

Argued February 18, 1888

Decided March 19, 1888

125 U.S. 240

Syllabus

A paper headed "Bill of Exceptions" not bearing the signature of the judge, but containing at its foot these words, "Allowed and ordered on file November 22, '83, A. B.," the trial having taken place in June, 1883, cannot be regarded as a bill of exceptions, because not signed by the judge, as required by § 953 of the Revised Statutes.

An information in a suit in rem against certain imported goods seized as forfeited for a violation of the customs revenue laws, alleged an entry of the goods, which were subject to duties, with intent to defraud the revenue by false and fraudulent invoices, by means whereof the United States were deprived of the lawful duties accruing upon the goods embraced in the invoices. The answer of the claimant denied that the goods became "forfeited in manner and form as in said information is alleged." At the trial, the jury rendered

"a verdict for the informants, and against the claimant for the condemnation of the goods mentioned in the information, and that the goods were brought in with intent to defraud the United States."

The decree set forth that, the jury having "by their verdict found for the United States condemning the said goods," they were "accordingly condemned as forfeited to the United States."

Held:

(1) The verdict was a sufficient compliance with the requirement of § 16 of the Act of June 22 1874, c. 391, 18 Stat. 189, that in order to a forfeiture, the jury should find that "the alleged acts were done with an actual intention to defraud the United States."

(2) The judgment was sufficient without reciting any special finding by the jury as to an intent to defraud.

Page 125 U. S. 241

Under § 12 of the Act of June 22, 1874, c. 391, 18 Stat. 188, merchandise can be forfeited independently of the imposition of the fine mentioned in that section.

In rem for the condemnation of four cases of goods seized for forfeiture for violation of the customs revenue laws. Judgment in the district court condemning the goods, which was affirmed in the circuit court. The claimant sued out this writ of error.

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