Kaoru Yamataya v. Thomas Fisher, No. 171

CourtUnited States Supreme Court
Writing for the CourtHarlan
Citation47 L.Ed. 721,189 U.S. 86,23 S.Ct. 611
PartiesKAORU YAMATAYA, Appt. , v. THOMAS M. FISHER, Immigrant and Chinese Inspector
Docket NumberNo. 171
Decision Date06 April 1903

189 U.S. 86
23 S.Ct. 611
47 L.Ed. 721
KAORU YAMATAYA, Appt.,

v.

THOMAS M. FISHER, Immigrant and Chinese Inspector.

No. 171.
Argued February 24, 1903.
Decided April 6, 1903.

Page 87

This case presents some questions arising under the act of Congress relating to the exclusion of certain classes of alien immigrants.

On the 11th day of July, 1901, appellant, a subject of Japan, landed at the port of Seattle, Washington; and on or about July 15th, 1901, the appellee, an immigrant inspector of the United States, having instituted an investigation into the circumstances of her entering the United States, decided that she came here in violation of law, in that she was a pauper and a person likely to become a public charge,—aliens of that class being excluded altogether from this country by the act of March 3d, 1891 (26 Stat. at L. 1085, chap. 551, U. S. Comp. Stat. 1901, p. 1294).

The evidence obtained by the inspector was transmitted to the Secretary of the Treasury, who, under date of July 23d, 1901, issued a warrant addressed to the immigrant inspector at Seattle, reciting that the appellant had come into the United States contrary to the provisions of the above act of 1891, and ordering that she be taken into custody and returned to Japan at the expense of the vessel importing her.

The inspector being about to execute this warrant, an application was presented in behalf of the appellant to the district court of the United States for the district of Washington, northern division, for a writ of habeas corpus. The application alleged that the imprisonment of the petitioner was unlawful, and that she did not come here in violation of the act of 1891, or of any other law of the United States relating to the exclusion of aliens.

The writ having been issued, a return was made by the inspector, stating that he had found upon due investigation and the admissions of the appellant that she was a pauper and a person likely to become a public charge, and had 'surreptitiously, clandestinely, unlawfully, and without any authority come into the United States;' that, 'in pursuance of said testimony, admissions of the petitioner, Kaoru Yamataya, evidence, facts, and circumstances,' he had decided that she had no right to be within the territory of the United States, and was a proper person for deportation; all which he reported to the proper officers of the government, who confirmed his decision,

Page 88

and thereupon the Secretary of the Treasury issued his warrant, requiring the deportation of the appellant. That warrant was produced and made part of the return.

The return of the inspector was traversed, the traverse admitting that the inspector had investigated the case of the petitioner, and had made a finding that she had illegally come into this country, but alleging that the investigation was a 'pretended' and an inadequate one; that she did not understand the English language, and did not know at the time that such investigation was with a view to her deportation from the country; and that the investigation was carried on without her having the assistance of counsel or friends, or an opportunity to show that she was not a pauper or likely to become a public charge. The traverse alleged that the petitioner was not in the United States in violation of law.

A demurrer to the traverse was sustained, the writ of habeas corpus was dismissed, and the appellant was remanded to the custody of the inspector. From that order the present appeal was prosecuted.

Messrs. Vere Goldthwaite, Harold Preston, and Walter A. Keene for appellant.

[Argument of Counsel from pages 88-92 intentionally omitted]

Page 92

Assistant Attorney General Hoyt for appellee.

[Argument of Counsel from pages 92-94 intentionally omitted]

Page 94

Mr. Justice Harlan delivered the opinion of the court:

It will conduce to a clear understanding of the questions to be determined if we recall certain legislation of Congress relating to the exclusion of aliens from the United States, and to the treaty of 1894 between Japan and the United States.

By the deficiency appropriation act of October 19th, 1888, chap. 1210, it was provided that the act of February 23d, 1887, chap. 220, amendatory of the act prohibiting the importation and immigration of foreigners and aliens under contract or agreement to perform labor in the United States, its territories, and the District of Columbia (24 Stat. at L. 414, U. S. Comp. Stat. 1901, p. 1292), be so amended 'as to authorize the Secretary of the Treasury, in case he shall be satisfied that an immigrant has been allowed to land contrary to the prohibition of that law, to cause such immigrant, within the period of one year after landing or entry, to be taken into custody and returned to the country from whence he came, at the expense of the owner of the importing vessel, or, if he entered from an adjoining country, at the expense of the person previously contracting for the services.' 25 Stat. at L. 566 (U. S. Comp. Stat. 1901, p. 1294).

By the 1st section of the act of Congress of March 3d, 1891, chap. 551, amendatory of the various acts relating to immigration and importation of aliens under contract or agreement to perform labor, it was provided: 'That the following classes of aliens shall be excluded from admission into the United States, in accordance with the existing acts regulating immigration, other than those concerning Chinese laborers: All idiots, insane persons, paupers, or persons likely to become a public charge, persons suffering from a loathsome or a dangerous contagious disease, persons who have been convicted of a felony or other infamous crime or misdemeanor involving moral turpitude, polygamists, and also any person whose ticket or passage is paid for with the money of another or who is assisted by others to come, unless it is affirmatively and satisfactorily shown, on

Page 95

special inquiry, that such person does not belong to one of the foregoing excluded classes, or to the class of contract laborers excluded by the act of February twenty-sixth, eighteen hundred and eighty-five [23 Stat. at L. 332, chap. 164, U. S. Comp. Stat. 1901, p. 1290]. . . .' 26 Stat. at L. 1084 (U. S. Comp. Stat. 1901, p. 1294).

By the 8th section of that act it was provided: 'That upon the arrival by water at any place within the United States of any alien immigrants it shall be the duty of the commanding officer and the agents of the steam or sailing vessel by which they came to report the name, nationality, last residence, and destination of every such alien, before any of them are landed, to the proper inspection officers, who shall thereupon go or send competent assistants on board such vessel and there inspect all such aliens, or the inspection officers may order a temporary removal of such aliens for examination at a designated time and place, and then and there detain them until a thorough inspection is made. . . . The inspection officers and their assistants shall have power to administer oaths, and to take and consider testimony touching the right of any such aliens to enter the United States, all of which shall be entered of record. During such inspection, after temporary removal, the superintendent shall cause such aliens to be properly housed, fed, and cared for, and also, in his discretion, such as are delayed in proceeding to their destination after inspection. All decisions made by the inspection officers or their assistants touching the right of any alien to land, when adverse to such right, shall be final unless appeal be taken to the superintendent of immigration, whose action shall be subject to review by the Secretary of the Treasury. It shall be the duty of the aforesaid officers and agents of such vessel to adopt due precautions to prevent the landing of any alien immigrant at...

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314 practice notes
  • Reno v. Flores, No. 91-905
    • United States
    • United States Supreme Court
    • March 23, 1993
    ...established that the Fifth Amendment entitles aliens to due process of law in deportation proceedings. See The Japanese Immigrant Case, 189 U.S. 86, 100-101, 23 S.Ct. 611, 614, 47 L.Ed. 721 (1903). To determine whether these alien juveniles have received it here, we must first review in som......
  • Ponce-Leiva v. Ashcroft, No. 01-2900.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (3rd Circuit)
    • June 5, 2003
    ...that the Fifth Amendment entitled aliens to due process of law in deportation proceedings." (citing The Japanese Immigrant Case, 189 U.S. 86, 100-01, 23 S.Ct. 611, 47 L.Ed. 721 (1903))); Chlomos v. INS, 516 F.2d 310, 313 (3d Cir.1975) ("An alien subjected to deportation proceedings is entit......
  • Rosado v. Civiletti, Nos. 980-982
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (2nd Circuit)
    • April 23, 1980
    ...Toy, however, espoused a doctrine to which the Supreme Court did not long adhere. Two years before Ju Toy, in The Japanese Immigrant Case, 189 U.S. 86, 23 S.Ct. 611, 47 L.Ed. 721 (1903), the Court had decided that the final authority conferred upon executive officers to pass upon the status......
  • Jointrefugee Committee v. Grath National Council Offriendship v. Grath International Workers Order v. Grath, ANTI-FASCIST
    • United States
    • United States Supreme Court
    • April 30, 1951
    ...shall be deprived of his liberty without opportunity, at some time to be heard * * *.' The Japanese Immigrant Case (Yamataya v. Fisher), 189 U.S. 86, 100—101, 23 S.Ct. 611, 614, 47 L.Ed. 721. '(B)y 'due process' is meant one which, following the forms of law, is appropriate to the case, and......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
309 cases
  • Reno v. Flores, No. 91-905
    • United States
    • United States Supreme Court
    • March 23, 1993
    ...established that the Fifth Amendment entitles aliens to due process of law in deportation proceedings. See The Japanese Immigrant Case, 189 U.S. 86, 100-101, 23 S.Ct. 611, 614, 47 L.Ed. 721 (1903). To determine whether these alien juveniles have received it here, we must first review in som......
  • Ponce-Leiva v. Ashcroft, No. 01-2900.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (3rd Circuit)
    • June 5, 2003
    ...that the Fifth Amendment entitled aliens to due process of law in deportation proceedings." (citing The Japanese Immigrant Case, 189 U.S. 86, 100-01, 23 S.Ct. 611, 47 L.Ed. 721 (1903))); Chlomos v. INS, 516 F.2d 310, 313 (3d Cir.1975) ("An alien subjected to deportation proceedings is entit......
  • Rosado v. Civiletti, Nos. 980-982
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (2nd Circuit)
    • April 23, 1980
    ...Toy, however, espoused a doctrine to which the Supreme Court did not long adhere. Two years before Ju Toy, in The Japanese Immigrant Case, 189 U.S. 86, 23 S.Ct. 611, 47 L.Ed. 721 (1903), the Court had decided that the final authority conferred upon executive officers to pass upon the status......
  • Jointrefugee Committee v. Grath National Council Offriendship v. Grath International Workers Order v. Grath, ANTI-FASCIST
    • United States
    • United States Supreme Court
    • April 30, 1951
    ...shall be deprived of his liberty without opportunity, at some time to be heard * * *.' The Japanese Immigrant Case (Yamataya v. Fisher), 189 U.S. 86, 100—101, 23 S.Ct. 611, 614, 47 L.Ed. 721. '(B)y 'due process' is meant one which, following the forms of law, is appropriate to the case, and......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
3 books & journal articles
  • THE IMAGINARY IMMIGRATION CLAUSE.
    • United States
    • Michigan Law Review Vol. 120 Nbr. 7, May 2022
    • May 1, 2022
    ...(491.) Act of Feb. 20, 1907, ch. 1134, [section] 3, 34 Stat. 898, 899. (492.) See Yamataya v. Fisher (The Japanese Immigrant Case), 189 U.S. 86, 97-99 (493.) Act of Mar. 26, 1910, ch. 128, [section] 3, 36 Stat. 263, 264-65 (repealed 1917). (494.) Bugajewitz v. Adams, 228 U.S. 585, 591 (1913......
  • ELIMINATING THE FUGITIVE DISENTITLEMENT DOCTRINE IN IMMIGRATION MATTERS.
    • United States
    • Notre Dame Law Review Vol. 97 Nbr. 3, March 2022
    • March 1, 2022
    ...proceedings are entitled to due process, and the touchstone in this setting is 'fundamental fairness.'" (citing Yamataya v. Fisher, 189 U.S. 86 (1903))); see also Mathews v. Diaz, 426 U.S. 67, 77-78 (1976)). (277) Tashnizi v. INS, 585 F.2d 781, 782-83 (5th Cir. 1978) (quoting Marlowe v. INS......
  • Due Process in Removal Proceedings After Thuraissigiam.
    • United States
    • Stanford Law Review Vol. 74 Nbr. 4, April 2022
    • April 1, 2022
    ...of the Court's discussion of the reach of the Due Process Clause. (58.) See id. (59.) Yamataya v. Fisher (The Japanese Immigrant Case), 189 U.S. 86, 87, 100-01 (60.) Id. at 101. (61.) Id. Yamataya still lost her case because the Court decided that even if she did not understand the "nature ......

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