United States v. Tanner
147 U.S. 661 (1893)

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U.S. Supreme Court

United States v. Tanner, 147 U.S. 661 (1893)

United States v. Tanner

No. 335

Submitted January 3, 1893

Decided March 8, 1893

147 U.S. 661

Syllabus

A marshal is not entitled to charge "travel in going to serve" process when taking a prisoner, under sentence, to the place of commitment. The construction given to an act by the department charged with the duty of enforcing it is material only in case of doubt.

This was a petition to recover for services, as marshal of the United States for the Southern District of Illinois, in executing certain warrants of commitment of prisoners to the penitentiary at Chester, Illinois. The claims were for travel fees in the service of the warrants, and were disallowed by the Comptroller upon the ground that a claim for mileage had

Page 147 U. S. 662

already been allowed for, as "transportation" for the deputies who executed the writs. The fifth finding of fact was that.

"prior to or about the first of October, 1885, it had been the usual practice of United States marshals to charge mileage, in their accounts for going to serve writs of commitment within their respective districts, six cents a mile, in additions to ten cents a mile each, for transportation of themselves or deputies, prisoners, and guards, and such charge, when made, had been allowed by the accounting officers of the Treasury until the date named, when the practice was changed, and such mileage was thereafter not allowed."

Upon this state of facts, the court found as a conclusion of law that petitioner was entitled to recover the sum of $128.16. 25 Ct.Cl. 68. The United States appealed.

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