Waterloo Distilling Corporation v. United States In re Various Items of Personal Property., No. 114

CourtUnited States Supreme Court
Writing for the CourtSUTHERLAND
Citation51 S.Ct. 282,75 L.Ed. 558,282 U.S. 577
PartiesWATERLOO DISTILLING CORPORATION et al. v. UNITED STATES. In re VARIOUS ITEMS OF PERSONAL PROPERTY. *
Docket NumberNo. 114
Decision Date24 February 1931

282 U.S. 577
51 S.Ct. 282
75 L.Ed. 558
WATERLOO DISTILLING CORPORATION et al.

v.

UNITED STATES. In re VARIOUS ITEMS OF PERSONAL PROPERTY. *

No. 114.
Argued Jan. 27, 1931.
Decided Feb. 24, 1931.

Page 578

Mr. Lewis Landes, of New York City, for petitioners.

Mr. G. A. Youngquist, Asst. Atty. Gen., for the United States.

Mr. Justice SUTHERLAND delivered the opinion of the Court.

This was a proceeding, under Rev. St. §§ 3257 and 3281 (26 USCA §§ 261, 193), by the United States to forfeit a distillery, warehouse, and denaturing plant of the Waterloo Distilling Corporation on the ground that the corporation had conducted its distilling business upon the premises with intent to defraud, and had defrauded, the government of the tax on the spirits distilled, in consequence of which the premises had become forfeited to the government. The fraud alleged was the withdrawal of alcohol ostensibly for nonbeverage but in reality for beverage purposes, without payment of the tax on spirits diverted to beverage purposes imposed by section 600(a) of the Revenue Act of 1918, as amended (26 USCA § 245). The corporation denied any violation of law.

Page 579

Evidence was introduced by the government tending to support the libel. The government admitted that, prior to the filing of the libel, the corporation and others had been indicted and convicted for conspiring to violate provisions of the statute, involving the transactions set forth in the libel as a basis for the forfeiture. A motion to dismiss the libel on the ground that the forfeiture proceedings were therefore barred was denied by the district court. There was a verdict for the government and judgment declaring a forfeiture of the premises to the government. This judgment was affirmed by the court below. 40 F.(2d) 422.

The only questions arising upon the record which we deem it necessary to consider are two in number: (1) Whether under section 600(a) of the Revenue Act of 1918, as amended, there was a diversion of distilled spirits to beverage purposes; (2) whether a conviction of a conspiracy to violate section 600(a) barred the proceedings to forfeit the premises.

First. By section 600(a), as amended (U. S. Code, Supp. III, title 26, § 245(4), 26 USCA § 245(4), it is provided:

'On and after February 26, 1926, on all distilled spirits which are diverted to beverage purposes or for use in the manufacture or production of any article used or intended for use as a beverage there shall be leived and collected a tax of $6.40 on each proof gallon or wine gallon when below proof, and a proportionate tax at a like rate on all fractional parts of such proof or wine gallon, to be paid by the person responsible for such diversion. If a tax at the rate of $2.20, $1.65, or $1.10 per proof or wine gallon has been paid upon such distilled spirits a credit of the tax so paid shall be allowed in computing the tax imposed by this paragraph.'

Included in the $6.40 is the basic tax of $2.20, which is not a penalty but a true tax. Only the remaining part of the $6.40 may be regarded as a penalty; but, whether

Page 580

the exaction be a tax or a penalty o pa rtly one and partly the other, there is no constitutional objection to enforcing it by forfeiture of the...

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161 practice notes
  • State v. Nunez, No. 23
    • United States
    • New Mexico Supreme Court of New Mexico
    • December 30, 1999
    ...of double jeopardy does not apply. Ursery, 518 U.S. at 275, 116 S.Ct. 2135 (quoting Various Items of Personal Property v. United States, 282 U.S. 577, 581, 51 S.Ct. 282, 75 L.Ed. 558 (1931) (alteration, omissions, and emphasis in original)). Because only persons can be punished, the majorit......
  • McKeehan v. United States, No. 20328.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (6th Circuit)
    • February 19, 1971
    ...engaged in any conduct which may be characterized criminal or wilfully negligent. Various Items of Personal Property v. United States, 282 U.S. 577, 581, 51 S.Ct. 282, 75 L.Ed. 558 (1931); United States v. One Ford Coupe Automobile, 272 U.S. 321, 47 S.Ct. 154, 71 L.Ed. 279 (1926); Goldsmith......
  • U.S. v. Davis, Docket No. 10–300–cv.
    • United States
    • U.S. Court of Appeals — Second Circuit
    • June 3, 2011
    ...and condemned as though it were conscious instead of inanimate and insentient.” Various Items of Personal Property v. United States, 282 U.S. 577, 581, 51 S.Ct. 282, 75 L.Ed. 558 (1931). As a result, civil forfeiture claimants are rarely afforded the same procedural and substantive protecti......
  • U.S. v. All Funds Dist, to or On Behalf, Weiss, Docket No. 01-6232.
    • United States
    • U.S. Court of Appeals — Second Circuit
    • September 17, 2003
    ...held guilty and condemned as though it were conscious instead of inanimate and insentient." Waterloo Distilling Corp. v. United States, 282 U.S. 577, 581, 51 S.Ct. 282, 75 L.Ed. 558 (1931) (distinguishing an in rem civil forfeiture proceeding from an in personam criminal proceeding against ......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
164 cases
  • State v. Nunez, No. 23
    • United States
    • New Mexico Supreme Court of New Mexico
    • December 30, 1999
    ...of double jeopardy does not apply. Ursery, 518 U.S. at 275, 116 S.Ct. 2135 (quoting Various Items of Personal Property v. United States, 282 U.S. 577, 581, 51 S.Ct. 282, 75 L.Ed. 558 (1931) (alteration, omissions, and emphasis in original)). Because only persons can be punished, the majorit......
  • McKeehan v. United States, No. 20328.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (6th Circuit)
    • February 19, 1971
    ...engaged in any conduct which may be characterized criminal or wilfully negligent. Various Items of Personal Property v. United States, 282 U.S. 577, 581, 51 S.Ct. 282, 75 L.Ed. 558 (1931); United States v. One Ford Coupe Automobile, 272 U.S. 321, 47 S.Ct. 154, 71 L.Ed. 279 (1926); Goldsmith......
  • U.S. v. Davis, Docket No. 10–300–cv.
    • United States
    • U.S. Court of Appeals — Second Circuit
    • June 3, 2011
    ...and condemned as though it were conscious instead of inanimate and insentient.” Various Items of Personal Property v. United States, 282 U.S. 577, 581, 51 S.Ct. 282, 75 L.Ed. 558 (1931). As a result, civil forfeiture claimants are rarely afforded the same procedural and substantive protecti......
  • U.S. v. All Funds Dist, to or On Behalf, Weiss, Docket No. 01-6232.
    • United States
    • U.S. Court of Appeals — Second Circuit
    • September 17, 2003
    ...held guilty and condemned as though it were conscious instead of inanimate and insentient." Waterloo Distilling Corp. v. United States, 282 U.S. 577, 581, 51 S.Ct. 282, 75 L.Ed. 558 (1931) (distinguishing an in rem civil forfeiture proceeding from an in personam criminal proceeding against ......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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