IN RE LONEY.
the penal section of the national banking act did not make the receiving of embezzled money of a national bank by a person not an officer of the bank an offense against the United States, the case of the defendant was cognizable in the state court, and his plea must be overruled. These cases are sufficient to illustrate the law of jurisdiction on this subject, and I need not cite any others. It is true that courts of two or three other states have held other"ise, but in all sucb decisions the phrase "exclusive jurisdiction" is construed to mean "concurrent jurisdiction," and the term "exclusive" is held to mean "not ex· elusive." I am sorry that my own mind is incapable of comprehending the logic by which plain words having plain meanings are thus metamorphosed ipto other words with other meanings. The law giving exclusive jurisdiction of offenses against the United States to the courts of the United States is founded upon the great principle of the common law and of humanity, that where a man is once tried for a criminal act by a court having jurisdiction of the offense he shall not be harassed, nor his liberty imperiled, by prosecutions for the same act in other tribunals. This principle is far transcendant in importance to any Question as to the relative dignity of different sovereignties, each claiming jurisdiction over specific classes of crime. The motion to postpone must be denied.
In re LONEY.
(Oireuit Court, E. D. Virginia. February 19.1889.)
Defendant was charged before a state court with perjury in having testified falsely before a notary public in a proceeding under Rev. St. U. S. c. 8, tit. 2, regulating the taking of testimony in a contest for a seat in the house of represe'ntatives of the United States. Held, that tbe offense is cognizable only by the federal courts. under Rev. St. U. S. \:l 5392, providing for the ment of perjury in any case in which the laws of the United States authorize an oath to be administered. and the second section of the judiciary act of August 13, 1888, giving the United States courts exclusive cognizance of all crimes cognizable under the authority of the United States.
Application for Habeas Oorpus. Edgar Allan and J. S. Parrish, for petitioner. R. A. Ayers, Atty. Gen., for the Commonwealth.
HUGHES, J. Wilson Loney was arrested by a state officer for trial before a state tribunal on a charge of perjury, alleged to have been committed in testifying as a witness in a contest for a seat in the house of representatives of the United States, directed and regulated by an act of congress, before an officer deriving his power to take testimony in such contest solely from an act of congress. See title 2, c. 8, Rev. St.U. S.
Thecontesi, in which Loney testified is not within the purview of any law of Virginia,and is .unknown to the jurisdiction of the state courts. It is especially and exclusively.fl, federal proceeding. A notary public is a state officer, having power to administer any oath required by state law, and no other. He has no power to administer oaths required by acts of congress, unless he is expressly authorized to do so by act of congress, in doing which he acts as an officer of the United States, and not a.s an officer of the state. This writ is issued by authority of section 753 of the Revised Statutes of the United States, which allows it "in any case in which the prisoner has done an act"-that is to say, has testified"in pursuance of a law of the United States." Perjury committed before any officer in such a contest is amenable to punishment under tion 5392 of the Revised Statutes of the United States, which declares that "every person who, having taken an oath before a competent tribunal, officer, or person in any case in which a law of the United States authorizes an oath to be administered, that he will testify * * * truly t willfully and contrary to such oath states any material matter which he does not believe to be true, is guilty of perjury, and shall be punished," etc. And the second section of the judiciary act of August 1,3, 1888, in a clause which has been continued in all the judiciary acts of congress since 1789, provides that "the circuit courts (concurrently with the district cour,ts) of the United States shall have exclusive cognizance 'of all crimes and offenses cognizable under the authority of the United States except as otherwise provided by law." And there is no act of congress "which provides otherwise" in respect of perjury, when committed in circumstances wherein it is an offense against the United States. Section 711 of the United States Revised Statutes repeats and emphasizes the provision of the acts of1789 to 1888. In general, and indeed in the great majority of cases, perjury is an offense against the state, cognizable exclusively by the state courts. But when committed by persons designated by penal Jaws of congress, in proceedings prescribed and regulated solely by acts of congress, it is an offense against the United States, and is exclusively by the national courts. It is contrary to the policy of the law and to the principles of humanity that a person shall be amenable to trial and punishment for the same act in two different tribunals belonging to different jurisdictions. Undoubtedly there are cases in which this policy of the law would seem to be ineffective. In an election where a member of congress and a state officer are voted for at the same time a false oath by the voter would be cognizable in both the national and state courts, and the latter would be generally left to deal with it. So, when a murder is committed, and the fatal shot is received in a national fort or dock-yard, and death ensues out of such place in an adjoining county, the dual jurisdiction would again occur, and that court would proceed to trial and judgment which first took cognizance of the offense. These are exceptions to the exclusive rule of jurisdiction, and bring into exercise the comity of courts. I think it is to these cases that section 5328 of the United States Revised Statutes refers.
UNITED STATES fl. SMALL.
But the case at bar does not resemble those that have been referred to. The contest for a seat in the house of representatives is a proceeding unknown alike to state legislation and the state judicatories, and violations of the laws of congress regulating it are offenses against the United States, and not against the state, of which the national courts have exclusive jurisdiction. The leading authority in support of this proposition is the decision of Mr. Justice BRADLEY in the case of Ex parte Dock Bridges, in 2 Woods, 428. The prisoner must be discharged from the custody of the state officer, and, if proper complaint be made, must be taken into custody of the marshal of this court, to be dealt with as provided for by the laws of congress. I have heard this case in circuit court, and will make the order of discharge in this court in order that if I have erred in this ruling the matter may at once be taken to the supreme court of the United States, where, being privileged, it may be decided without delay.
March 2, 1889.)
«(Jzrcuit (Jo'lf'ft, E. D. Virginia.
ELECTIONS AND VOTERS-ARREST OF VOTERS AT POLLS.
There is no law authorizing the arrest of a person while offering hls1iallot at the polls, for any cause relating-to his right of suffrage.
Indictment against C. C. Small for unlawfully preventing a qualified voter from exercising his right of suffrage. J.O. Gibson, U. S. Atty., arid Whitehurst <to Hughes, special assistants, for the United States. R. O. MarshaU and John w: Happtrr, for defendant.
HUGHES, J., (charging jury.) The indictment which we are trying charges, among other things, that the defendant, C. C. Small, judge of election at the polls of the Third ward of the city of Portsmouth, did,at the election of a member of congress held on the 6th day of November last, by force, unlawfully prevent a qualified voter, William H. Johnson, from freely exercising the right of suffrage in that election. The evidence shows that the "force" exercised by Small was his ordering the arrest of William H. Johnson while offering to vote, and directing his abduction from the polls. The case is important in only one of its features, namely, in the fact of the arrest of a citizen at the polls while offering his vote, for some cause relating to his right of suffrage. The defendant himself testified that he ordered the arrest of Johnson while standing at the polls offering to vote, because of a matter relating to his suffrage. Stripping the case of all other circumftances,-leaving out of consideration' the cumulative charges usually inserted in indictments to meet supposed features of the evidence yet unknown to the pleader,-"I shall confine myself in what I shall say to this prominent