443 Cans of Egg Product v. United States
226 U.S. 172 (1912)

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U.S. Supreme Court

443 Cans of Egg Product v. United States, 226 U.S. 172 (1912)

Four Hundred Forty-three Cans of Egg Product v. United States

No. 590

Argued October 24, 25, 1912

Decided December 2, 1912

226 U.S. 172


The provision in § 10 of the Pure Food Act of June 30, 1906, 34 Stat. 768, c. 3915, that proceedings for seizure of goods shall be by libel and conform as near as may be to proceedings in admiralty, does not include appellate proceedings; the action of the district court on the libel can only be reviewed as at common law by writ of error, and not by appeal.

When Congress enacted the Pure Food Act, it was known that, as to seizures on land, the district court proceeded as in actions at common law.

The provision for jury trial in § 10 of the Pure Food Act was probably inserted by Congress with a view to removing any question of constitutionality of the act.

While proceedings for seizure and condemnation under § 10 of the Pure Food Act are intended to be summary, the owner, as this Court construes the statute, has a right to a hearing in a court of record, with a right of review upon questions of law by writ of error in the circuit court of appeals, and where more than $1,000 is involved finally in this Court under § 6 of the Circuit Court of Appeals Act.

As the circuit court of appeals had no jurisdiction to review the action of the district court on a libel filed under the Pure Food Act, neither its own action thereon nor the consent of the parties could give such jurisdiction.

Where the circuit court of appeals proceeds without jurisdiction, this Court should, on acquiring jurisdiction of the cause, remand it to the circuit court of appeals with instructions to dismiss the appeal for want of jurisdiction.

193 F. 589 reversed.

The facts are stated in the opinion.

Page 226 U. S. 177

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