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The Neptune.

reason that Brown, in order to obtain a register for
her as a ship of the United States, had falsely sworn
that she was his sole property, when he knew that she
was in part owned by an alien. There was no proceed-
ing in rem against the vessel. It was a suit against
the assignees of Brown for the value of the vessel ;
and the court decided that an action for the value
could only be supported against the person who had
taken the oath.
It is evident from the facts in this case, that George
M. Ogden, when he applied for a register for the Nep-
tune, did not believe that he could with safety take
the oath required by law; because he had prepared an
oath varying in form from the oath required, which he
pressed the collector to be permitted to take, but
which the collector refused to administer. And the
collector was of opinion, until he consulted the district
attorney, that he ought not to be permitted to take the
oath prescribed, as he could not do it without swear-
ing to a fact which was known to be untrue. For this
reason he refused to administer the oath to Captain
Myrick in his life time.
There are strong grounds for the belief that the
Neptune never had a genuine register. She is repre-
sented in the inanifest to have been built at Boston–
to be owned by Captain Myrick of New-York—and
that she belonged to the port of Wilmington, in North
Carolina. If she had been built at Boston, and belong-
ed at the time to a person residing in New-York, it is
more than probable that, pursuant to the provisions of
the third section of the act, she would have been regis-
tered at one of those places. If Captain Myrick or

the present owners had been desirous of obtaining correct information on the subject, it would have been

furnished on application to the treasury depart

ment. All registers are transmitted regularly to the register of the treasury to be registered in his office.

It should be recollected, that the mate of the Nep" tune testified, that Captain Myrick, after returning from the house of Messrs. Harrod and Ogdens to his vessel said he had left his pocket-book containing the register on ftheir desk. Hence, it is rational to conclude, either that Captain Myrick had no register, or that if he had one, it would not lcar inspection.

Upon theiwhole, the court are of opinion that the register was fraudulently and knowningly used for the Neptune, when she was not entitled to the benefit of it: and that she is scrseited for a vlo!ation of the provisions of the 27th section of the registry act ; and that the provisions cf that section upply as well to vessels which have not been previously registered, as to those to which registers have been previously gran

ted. Decree affirmed.

Deca EE.—This cause came on to be heard on the transcript of the record, and was argued by counsel On consideration whereof, it is decreed and ordered that the decree of the district court of Louisiana in this case be, and the same is hereby asfirmed, with costs and damages at the rate of six per centum per annum, in :

Vol. III. 78

1818.

The Neptune. 1818. cluding interest on the amount of the appraised value ‘....T." of the said ship Neptune, to be computed from the date

U. States of the decree of the said district court.

W. Paliner:

The UNITED STATEs v. PALM ER et al.

A robbery committed on the high reas, although such robbery if eon.
mitted on land would not by the laws of the United States be punish-
able with death, is piracy, under the 8th section of the act of 1790,
ch. 36, (ix) for the punishment of certain crimes against the United
states ; and the circuit courts have jurisdiction thereof.
The crine of robbery, as mention d in the act, is the crime of robbery
as recognized and defined at common law-
The crime of rolbery committed by a person who is not a citizen of
the United States, on the high seas, on board a ship belonging ex-
elusively to subjects of a forcign state, is not piracy under the act
and is not punishable in the courts of the United States.
When a civil war rages in a foreign nation, one part of which sepa-
rates itself srom t li e old stab is led tov rm thi, nd erects it, clf
into a distinct government, the courts of the Union thust view such
newly constituted government, as it is vicwed by the legislative and
executive departments of time government of the United States.

If that government remains neutral, but recognizes the cristence of a civil war, the courts of the Union cannot consider as criminal those acts of hostility which war authorizes, and which the new governs. ment may direct against its enemy.

The same tectimony which would be sufficient to prove that a vessel or person is in the service of an acknowledged state, is admissible to prove that they are in the service of such newly crected: overnment. Its seal cannot be allow t d to prove itself, but may be proved by such testimony as the nature of the case admits; and the fact that a vesse! or person is in the service of such government may be established

ctlier wise, should it be impracticable to prove the seal.

This case was certified from the circuit court for the Massachusetts district.

At the circuit court of the United States, for the first circuit, begun and holden at Boston, within and for the Massachusetts district, on Welnesday, the fifteenth day of October, in the year of our lord one thousand eight hundred and seventeen:

Before the honourable Joseph Story, associate jus tice, and John davis, district judge.

The jurors of the United States of America within and for the district asoresaid, upon their oaths, do present, that John Palmer and Thomas Wilson, both late of Brston, in the district aforesaid, mariners, and Barney Colloghan, late of Newburyport, in the aforesaid district, mariner, with force and arms, upon the high seas, out of the jurisdiction of any particular state, on the fourth day of July now last past, did piratically and feloniously set upon, board break, and enter a certain ship called the Industria , Raffaelli, then and there being a ship of certain persons (to the jurors aforesaid unknown,) and then and there, piratically and se!oniously, did make an assault in and upon certain persons, being mariners, subjects of the king of Spain, whose names to the jurors aforesaid are unknown, in the same ship, in the peace of God, and of the said United States of America, then and there being, and then there piratically and feloniously did put the aforesaid persons, mariners of the same ship, in the ship aforesaid then be ing, in corporal fear and danger of their lives, then and there, in the ship aforesaid, upon the high seas aforesaid, and out of the jurisdiction of any particular state, as aforesaid, and piratically and seloniously did, then and there, steal, take and carry away five

1818.

The
U. States

Palmer.

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hundred boxes of sugar, of the value of twenty thou

sand dollars of lawful money of the said United States;

sixty pipes cf rum, of the value of six thousand dollars; two hundrel demijohns of honey, of the value of one thousand dollars; one thousand hides, of the value of three thousand dollars; ten hogsheads of coffee, of the value of two thousand dollars; and four bags of silver and gold, of the value of sixty thousand dollars, of the like lawful money of the said United States of America, the goods and chattels of certain persons, (to the jurors aforesaid unknown,) them and there, upon the high seas aforesaid, and out of the jurisdiction of any particular state, being found in the aforesaid ship, in custody and possession of the said mariners in the said ship, from the said mariners of the same ship, and f. on their custody and possession,

then and there, upon the high scas aforesaid, out of

the jurisdiction of any particular state, as aforesaid;
against the peace an I dig lity of the said United States,
and the form of the statutes of the United States, in
such case made and provided. And the jurors afore-
said, upon their oath aforesaid, do farther present, that
the afore said district of Massachusetts is the district
where the offenders : foresaid were first apprehended
for the said offence. -
To which indictment the prisoners pleaded not guil-
ty, and upon the trial the following questions occurred,
upon which the opinions of the said judges of the cir-
cuit court we e opposed.
1st. Whether a robbery committed upon the high
seas, although such robbery, is committed upon land,
would not, by the laws of the United States, be pun-

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