266 F.Supp. 401 (D. Puerto Rico 1966), Civ. 395-65, Wackenhut Corp. v. Aponte

Docket Nº:Civ. 395-65
Citation:266 F.Supp. 401
Party Name:Wackenhut Corp. v. Aponte
Case Date:June 23, 1966
Court:United States District Courts, 1st Circuit, District of Puerto Rico

Page 401

266 F.Supp. 401 (D. Puerto Rico 1966)

The WACKENHUT CORPORATION, Marvil International Security Services, Inc., and Robert S. Hopler, Plaintiffs,


The Hon. Salvador Rodriguez APONTE, Superintendent of Police, the Hon. RafaelHernandez Colon, Secretary of Justice and the Hon. Roberto Sanchez Vilella,Governor of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico.

Civ. No. 395-65.

United States District Court, D. Puerto Rico

June 23, 1966

Page 402

McConnell, Valdes & Kelley, San Juan, P.R., for plaintiffs, Wackenhut Corp. and Robert S. Hopler.

Parke, Graves & Rodriguez-Maduro, Santurce, P.R., for plaintiff, Marvil International Securities Services, Inc.

Gonzalez Jr., Gonzalez-Oliver & Novak, Santurce, P.R., for plaintiff, Caribbean Refining Co.

Rafael Hernandez Colon and Rafael A. Rivera-Cruz, Dept. of Justice, San Juan, P.R., for defendants.

Before MARIS and McENTEE, Circuit Judges, and RUIZ-NAZARIO, District judge.


MARIS, Circuit Judge.

The plaintiffs in this case seek an injunction restraining the enforcement against them of the Private Detectives Act of Puerto Rico approved June 29, 1965, No. 108, 25 L.P.R.A. § 285 et seq. Upon their application a district judge then temporarily presiding by assignment in this court issued a temporary restraining order on September 16, 1965. Upon the application of the plaintiffs the Chief Judge of the First Circuit on January 13, 1966 constituted the present district court of three judges to hear and determine the plaintiffs' application for an interlocutory and permanent injunction. Hearings were held on February 8, February 11 and April 27, 1966.

The Wackenhut Corporation, one of the plaintiffs, is a Florida corporation authorized to do business in Puerto Rico. Marvil International Security Services, Inc., another of the plaintiffs, is a corporation of Puerto Rico, and Robert S. Hopler, the third plaintiff, is a resident of Puerto Rico and district manager in Puerto Rico of The Wackenhut Corporation. Both Wackenhut and Marvil are engaged in the business as independent contractors of providing guards and watchman services for industrial concerns. They allege that the Private Detectives Act of Puerto Rico deprives them of liberty, property and livelihood without due process of law in violation of the Constitution of the United States in that

'(a) It unreasonably, arbitrarily and capriciously prohibits them from rendering the same services which it is permissible for persons in their individual capacity to render.

'(b) It unreasonably, arbitrarily and capriciously includes guards and watchmen employed by agencies providing guard and watchman services to the general public in the definition of 'private detectives'.

'(c) It unreasonably, arbitrarily and capriciously prohibits said plaintiffs from rendering guard and watchman services during the course of conflicts among workers, or between workers and employers, or in cases in which petitions for union elections have been filed, whereas said plaintiffs would not be so prohibited were they rendering said services in their individual capacity.

'(d) It unreasonably, arbitrarily and capriciously prohibits plaintiff Marvil from using trained dogs in rendering guard and watchman services, whereas an individual rendering said services with trained dogs would not be so prohibited.'

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