240 U.S. 127 (1916), 532, Innes v. Tobin

Docket Nº:No. 532
Citation:240 U.S. 127, 36 S.Ct. 290, 60 L.Ed. 562
Party Name:Innes v. Tobin
Case Date:February 21, 1916
Court:United States Supreme Court

Page 127

240 U.S. 127 (1916)

36 S.Ct. 290, 60 L.Ed. 562




No. 532

United States Supreme Court

February 21, 1916

Argued January 6, 1916




Prior to adoption of the Constitution, fugitives from justice were surrendered between the states conformably to what were deemed to be the controlling principles of comity.

It was intended by Art. IV of the Constitution to fully embrace the subject of rendition of fugitives from justice between the states and to confer authority upon Congress to deal with that subject.

The Act of February 12, 1793, c. 7, 1 Stat. 302, now Rev.Stats., § 5278, was enacted for the purpose of controlling the subject of interstate rendition and its provisions were intended to be dominant and, so far as they operated, controlling and exclusive of state power.

Construed in the light of the principles which the statute embodies, the provisions of Rev.Stats. § 5278, expressly or by necessary implication, prohibit the surrender in one state for removal as a fugitive from justice to another a person who clearly was not and could not have been such a fugitive from the demanding state.

The doctrine of asylum applicable under international law by which a person extradited from a foreign country cannot be tried for an offense other than the one for which the extradition was asked does not apply to interstate rendition.

Where there is nothing in the record of a habeas corps proceeding to show that the person held for surrender under interstate rendition had not been in the demanding state, there is no basis for this Court's assuming that the rendition order conflicted with Rev.Stats. § 5278 in that respect, because the record did show that such person had come into the surrendering state from a state other than the one demanding.

An Act of Congress which leaves a subject with which Congress has power to deal under the Constitution unprovided for does not necessarily take the matters within the unprovided area out of any possible state action, and so held that the exclusive character of § 5278 Rev.Stats. does not relate to the rendition between criminals found in, but who had not fled to, the surrendering state but had been involuntarily brought therein.

Page 128

In construing an Act of Congress, this Court will not presume that, because its provisions were not coterminous with the power granted by Congress, it was so framed for the purpose of leaving the subject, so far as unprovided for, beyond the operation of any legal authority whatever, state or national.

The facts, which involve the construction of the provisions in the federal Constitution relative to intrastate rendition and the constitutionality, construction, and application of § 5278 Rev.Stats., providing for such rendition, are stated in the opinion.

Page 129

WHITE, J., lead opinion

MR. CHIEF JUSTICE WHITE delivered the opinion of the Court.

The Governor of Oregon honored a requisition made by the Governor of Texas for the delivery of the plaintiff in error for removal to Texas as a fugitive from the justice of that state. The accused was taken to Texas, tried for murder and a conspiracy to commit murder, and acquitted. She was, however, not released from custody, because she was ordered by the Governor of Texas, under a requisition of the Governor of Georgia, to be held for delivery to an agent of the State of Georgia for removal to that state as a fugitive from justice.

Alleging these facts, an application for release by habeas corpus was then presented to a state court upon the charge that the extradition proceedings and the warrant of removal thereunder were "wholly null and void" because

your petitioner was...

To continue reading