Haupt v. United States
330 U.S. 631 (1947)

Annotate this Case

U.S. Supreme Court

Haupt v. United States, 330 U.S. 631 (1947)

Haupt v. United States

No. 49

Argued November 21, 22, 1946

Decided March 31, 1947

330 U.S. 631

Syllabus

1. In a trial for treason, proof by the direct testimony of two witnesses that defendant gave shelter for a period of six days to an enemy agent who had entered this country for purposes of sabotage, helped him to buy an automobile, and helped him to obtain employment in a plant manufacturing military equipment, all in aid of his known purpose of sabotage, was sufficient proof of overt acts to satisfy the requirements of Article III, § 3 of the Constitution. Cramer v. United States,325 U. S. 1, distinguished. Pp. 330 U. S. 634-636.

2. Proof by direct testimony of two witnesses (detailed in the opinion) that the saboteur spent the nights in the house where the defendant lived and with the defendant's knowledge was sufficient proof of the overt act of harboring and sheltering. Pp. 330 U. S. 636-638.

3. Proof by direct testimony of two witnesses (detailed in the opinion) that the defendant purchased an automobile and that the saboteur took it and drove it away was sufficient proof of the overt act of assisting in the purchase of an automobile -- even though the testimony of the two witnesses was not identical, and some of their testimony related to different parts of the same transaction. Pp. 330 U. S. 638-640.

4. It was for the jury to determine upon the evidence whether the acts of defendant were motivated by parental solicitude for his son, the saboteur, or by adherence to the enemy cause. Pp. 330 U. S. 641-642.

5. The jury were properly instructed that, if they found that defendant's intention was not to injure the United States, but merely to aid his son

"as an individual, as distinguished from assisting him in his purposes, if such existed, of aiding the German Reich, or of injuring the United States, the defendant must be found not guilty."

Pp. 330 U. S. 641-642.

6. Conversations and occurrences evidencing the defendant's sympathy with Germany and with Hitler and hostility to the United States, though long prior to the indictment, were admissible on the question of intent and adherence to the enemy, and their weight was for the jury. Pp. 330 U. S. 642-643.

7. When legal basis for a conviction of treason has been laid by the testimony of two witnesses to the same overt act, there is nothing

Page 330 U. S. 632

in the text or policy of the Constitution precluding the use of corroborative out-of-court admissions or confessions. P. 330 U. S. 643.

8. Other errors assigned by petitioner relative to the conduct of the trial -- such as permitting the indictment to go to the jury room, allowing the jury to have a typewritten copy of the court's charge, holding the jury together for a long time, reading the testimony of certain witnesses to the jury at its request, failing to order a special verdict, and improper appeals to passion by the prosecutor -- are examined and found not to involve such unfairness or irregularity as would warrant reversal. P. 330 U. S. 643.

152 F.2d 771 affirmed.

Petitioner was indicted and convicted of treason. The Circuit Court of Appeals reversed. 136 F.2d 661. On a second trial, petitioner was again convicted. T he Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed. 152 F.2d 771. This Court granted certiorari. 328 U.S. 831. Affirmed, p. 330 U. S. 644.

Official Supreme Court caselaw is only found in the print version of the United States Reports. Justia caselaw is provided for general informational purposes only, and may not reflect current legal developments, verdicts or settlements. We make no warranties or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained on this site or information linked to from this site. Please check official sources.