United States v. Shotwell Mfg. Co.
355 U.S. 233 (1957)

Annotate this Case

U.S. Supreme Court

United States v. Shotwell Mfg. Co., 355 U.S. 233 (1957)

United States v. Shotwell Manufacturing Co.

No. 1

Argued October 17, 1957

Decided December 16, 1957

355 U.S. 233

Syllabus

In a jury trial in a federal court, respondents were convicted of willfully attempting to evade federal corporate income taxes. The Court of Appeals reversed on the ground that their privilege against self-incrimination had been violated by the admission of evidence obtained as a result of timely voluntary disclosures made by them in good faith in the hope of obtaining immunity from criminal prosecution under a policy then followed by the Treasury Department. After petitioning this Court for certiorari, the Government moved that the case be remanded to the District Court for further proceedings, on the ground that newly discovered evidence revealed that testimony at the trial concerning the timeliness and good faith of respondents' disclosures was perjured and fraudulent.

Held: this Court will not review a case on the basis of a record so challenged as being tainted with perjury and fraud; the judgment of the Court of Appeals is vacated, and the case is remanded to the District Court for reexamination in further proceedings on the issues relating to respondents' allegedly voluntary disclosures. Pp. 355 U. S. 234-246.

(a) This Court will not review a case when the record is challenged, on the basis of newly discovered evidence, as being so tainted with perjury and fraud. Communist Party v. Subversive Activities Control Board,351 U. S. 115; Mesarosh v. United States,352 U. S. 1. Pp. 355 U. S. 241-242.

(b) Here, a convincing showing has been made that newly discovered evidence will show that testimony concerning crucial questions as to the timeliness and good faith of respondents' disclosures was perjured and fraudulent, and this Court will not review the decision of the Court of Appeals until these charges have been resolved. Pp. 355 U. S. 242-243.

(c) Since respondents were found guilty by the jury, the motion to remand involves no question of double jeopardy. P. 355 U. S. 243.

Page 355 U. S. 234

(d) The Government's new showing does not relate to an issue submitted to the jury, but to a preliminary question relating to the admissibility of evidence, and, since the Court of Appeals set aside the verdict on that point, fair administration of justice requires that the Government have an opportunity to show that that decision was obtained by respondents on a corrupt record attributable to their own fraud. Pp. 355 U. S. 243-244.

(e) This Court will not sanction a rule which would prohibit appellate review upon a record suspect of taint when the taint might operate to the disadvantage of the defendants, but which would require review when the taint might operate to their advantage. P. 355 U. S. 244.

(f) Since the charges as to the integrity of the record must be fully aired and the District Court is the proper forum for that purpose, it would be unnecessary and wasteful to remand this case to the Court of Appeals. Pp. 355 U. S. 244-245.

(g) On remand, additional evidence to be presented by both sides will be confined to the issue whether certain evidence admitted at the trial should have been suppressed, and the District Court will make appropriate new findings of fact on that issue, and enter appropriate new final judgments on the basis of such findings. Pp. 355 U. S. 245-246.

225 F.2d 394, judgment vacated and case remanded to District Court.

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