Thomas v. United States - 192 U.S. 363 (1904)
U.S. Supreme Court
Thomas v. United States, 192 U.S. 363 (1904)
Thomas v. United States
Argued December 4, 1903
Decided February 23, 1904
192 U.S. 363
The, words duties, imposts and excises were used comprehensively in the Constitution to cover customs and excise duties imposed on importation, consumption, manufacture, and sale of certain commodities, privileges, particular business transactions, vocations, and the like. The stamp duty on sales of shares of stock in corporations imposed by the War Revenue Act of 1898, 30 Stat. 448, falls within that category, and was not a direct tax.
George C. Thomas was indicted for violation of the internal revenue laws of the United States in that, being a broker in the City of New York, he sold certain shares of Atchison preferred stock and omitted the required revenue stamps from the memorandum of sale. He demurred to the indictment on the ground that the Act of June 13, 1898, 30 Stat. 448, c. 448, which required the stamps to be affixed, was unconstitutional. The demurrer was overruled, the court, Thomas, J., delivering an opinion. 115 F. 207.
Trial was had, defendant found guilty, and judgment rendered, sentencing him to pay a fine of five hundred dollars.
The case was then brought here on writ of error.