United States v. Johnson
327 U.S. 106 (1946)

Annotate this Case

U.S. Supreme Court

United States v. Johnson, 327 U.S. 106 (1946)

United States v. Johnson

No. 115

Argued January 2, 1946

Decided February 4, 1946*

327 U.S. 106

Syllabus

1. Where, on an appeal from a denial of a motion for a new trial on the ground of newly discovered evidence under Rule II(3) of the Criminal Appeals Rules, it appears that the only objection is to the trial court's findings on conflicting evidence, and that there was evidence to support its findings, the appeal does not present a reviewable issue of law, and the circuit court of appeals should, on its own motion, dismiss the appeal as frivolous under Rule IV, which gives the circuit courts of appeals power to supervise and control all proceedings on appeal. P. 327 U. S. 113.

2. It is important for the orderly administration of criminal justice that findings on conflicting evidence by trial courts on motions for new trial based on newly discovered evidence remain undisturbed, except in most extraordinary circumstances. P. 327 U. S. 111.

3. It is not the province of this Court or the circuit courts of appeals to review orders granting or denying motions for a new trial when such review is sought on the ground that the trial court made erroneous findings of fact and it does not clearly appear that the findings are not supported by any evidence. P. 327 U. S. 111.

Page 327 U. S. 107

4. While a defendant should be afforded the full benefit of a motion for a new trial on the ground of newly discovered evidence under Rule II(3) of the Criminal Appeals Rules, courts should be on the alert to see that the privilege is not abused, and one of the most effective methods of preventing abuse is to refrain from reviewing findings of fact which have evidence to support them. P. 327 U. S. 113.

149 F.2d 31 reversed.

Respondents in both cases were convicted of violations of penal provisions of the Revenue Acts, and for conspiracy. The circuit court of appeals reversed. 123 F.2d 111, 142. After granting certiorari, 315 U.S. 790, this Court reversed and remanded the case to the circuit court of appeals. 319 U. S. 319 U.S. 503. That court remanded the case to the district court to permit a motion for a new trial on the ground of newly discovered evidence. That motion was made and denied. The circuit court of appeals affirmed. 142 F.2d 588. Respondents petitioned this Court for certiorari, but the petition was dismissed on motion of their counsel. 323 U.S. 806. After obtaining a second remand from the circuit court of appeals on the ground of still further newly discovered evidence, respondents filed in the district court an amended motion for a new trial. That motion was denied. The circuit court of appeals reversed. 149 F.2d 31. This Court granted certiorari. 326 U.S. 702. Reversed and remanded to the district court to enforce the judgment. P. 327 U. S. 113.

Page 327 U. S. 108

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