United States v. John Carter, No. 722

CourtUnited States Supreme Court
PartiesUNITED STATES, Plff. in Err., v. JOHN H. CARTER
Decision Date15 December 1913
Docket NumberNo. 722

231 U.S. 492
34 S.Ct. 173
58 L.Ed. 330
UNITED STATES, Plff. in Err.,

v.

JOHN H. CARTER.

No. 722.
Submitted December 1, 1913.
Decided December 15, 1913.

Solicitor General Davis for plaintiff in error.

Messrs. William A. Blount and Francis B. Carter for defendant in error.

Memorandum opinion by Mr. Chief Justice White, by direction of the court:

At the threshold we must consider a motion to dismiss. The case is a criminal one over which we have only the jurisdiction conferred by the criminal appeals act (34 Stat. at L. chap. 2564, p. 1246). There were two indictments containing, the one 54 and the

Page 493

other 26 counts, purporting to charge alleged offenses against the national banking laws as embodied in Rev. Stat. § 5209, U. S. Comp. Stat. 1901, p. 3497. On demurrer the court quashed 43 of the counts because they were 'bad in law.' It is settled that under the criminal appeals act we have no authority to revise the mere interpretation of an indictment, and are confined to ascertaining whether the court in a case under review erroneously construed the statute: United States v. Keitel, 211 U. S. 370, 53 L. ed. 230, 29 Sup. Ct. Rep. 123; United States v. Stevenson, 215 U. S. 190, 196, 54 L. ed. 153, 156, 30 Sup. Ct. Rep. 35. Our power to review the action of the court then in this case can alone rest upon the theory that what was done amounts to a construction of the statute. But it is obvious that the ruling that the counts which were quashed were bad in law did not necessarily involve a construction of the statute, and may well have rested upon the opinion of the court as to the mere insufficiency of the indictment.

It is, however, insisted on behalf of the United States that by referring to the counts which were held good, and comparing them with those which were quashed, by a process of exclusion and inclusion, it will be possible to ascertain that the action of the court was based upon a construction of the statute, and we are asked to review the case upon this theory. At best, this proposition amounts to the contention that in every case where there is doubt as to whether the court construed the statute or interpreted the indictment, such doubt should be solved by an examination of the entire record. But the right to a review in a criminal case, being controlled by the general law, it follows that a case cannot be brought within the control of the special rule provided by the criminal appeals act unless it clearly appears...

To continue reading

Request your trial
13 practice notes
  • United States v. Heath, No. 15576.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (9th Circuit)
    • August 1, 1958
    ...the Supreme Court to remand appropriate cases to Court of Appeals. For the prior and subsequent practice, compare United States v. Carter, 231 U.S. 492, 34 S.Ct. 173, 58 L.Ed. 330; United States v. Halsey, Stuart & Co., 296 U.S. 451, 56 S.Ct. 299, 80 L.Ed. 323; United States v. Wayne Pump C......
  • United States v. Underwriters Ass, SOUTH-EASTERN
    • United States
    • United States Supreme Court
    • June 5, 1944
    ...v. O'Malley, 219 U.S. 128, 139, 31 S.Ct. 190, 193, 55 L.Ed. 128; New York Life Ins. Co. v. Deer Lodge County, supra, 231 U.S. 511, 512, 34 S.Ct. 173, 58 L.Ed. 332; Blumenstock Bros. Advertising Agency v. Curtis Pub. Co., 252 U.S. 436, 443, 40 S.Ct. 385, 387, 64 L.Ed. 649; Hill v. Wallace, 2......
  • United States v. Borden Co, No. 397
    • United States
    • United States Supreme Court
    • December 4, 1939
    ...in definiteness. United States v. Keitel, 211 U.S. 370, 397—399, 29 S.Ct. 123, 131—132, 53 L.Ed. 230; United States v. Page 194 Carter, 231 U.S. 492, 493, 34 S.Ct. 173, 174, 58 L.Ed. 330; United States v. Hastings, 296 U.S. 188, 192—194, 56 S.Ct. 218, 219, 220, 80 L.Ed. 148. The appeal as t......
  • United States v. Hastings, No. 22
    • United States
    • United States Supreme Court
    • December 9, 1935
    ...397, 398, 29 S.Ct. 123, 53 L.Ed. 230; United States v. Miller, 223 U.S. 599, 602, 32 S.Ct. 323, 56 L.Ed. 568; United States v. Carter, 231 U.S. 492, 493, 34 S.Ct. 173, 58 L.Ed. 330; United States v. Moist, 231 U.S. 701, 702, 34 S.Ct. 255, 58 L.Ed. 444; United States v. Colgate & Co., 250 U.......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
13 cases
  • United States v. Heath, No. 15576.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (9th Circuit)
    • August 1, 1958
    ...the Supreme Court to remand appropriate cases to Court of Appeals. For the prior and subsequent practice, compare United States v. Carter, 231 U.S. 492, 34 S.Ct. 173, 58 L.Ed. 330; United States v. Halsey, Stuart & Co., 296 U.S. 451, 56 S.Ct. 299, 80 L.Ed. 323; United States v. Wayne Pump C......
  • United States v. Underwriters Ass, SOUTH-EASTERN
    • United States
    • United States Supreme Court
    • June 5, 1944
    ...v. O'Malley, 219 U.S. 128, 139, 31 S.Ct. 190, 193, 55 L.Ed. 128; New York Life Ins. Co. v. Deer Lodge County, supra, 231 U.S. 511, 512, 34 S.Ct. 173, 58 L.Ed. 332; Blumenstock Bros. Advertising Agency v. Curtis Pub. Co., 252 U.S. 436, 443, 40 S.Ct. 385, 387, 64 L.Ed. 649; Hill v. Wallace, 2......
  • United States v. Borden Co, No. 397
    • United States
    • United States Supreme Court
    • December 4, 1939
    ...in definiteness. United States v. Keitel, 211 U.S. 370, 397—399, 29 S.Ct. 123, 131—132, 53 L.Ed. 230; United States v. Page 194 Carter, 231 U.S. 492, 493, 34 S.Ct. 173, 174, 58 L.Ed. 330; United States v. Hastings, 296 U.S. 188, 192—194, 56 S.Ct. 218, 219, 220, 80 L.Ed. 148. The appeal as t......
  • United States v. Hastings, No. 22
    • United States
    • United States Supreme Court
    • December 9, 1935
    ...397, 398, 29 S.Ct. 123, 53 L.Ed. 230; United States v. Miller, 223 U.S. 599, 602, 32 S.Ct. 323, 56 L.Ed. 568; United States v. Carter, 231 U.S. 492, 493, 34 S.Ct. 173, 58 L.Ed. 330; United States v. Moist, 231 U.S. 701, 702, 34 S.Ct. 255, 58 L.Ed. 444; United States v. Colgate & Co., 250 U.......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT