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Powers of Consuls.
sentative of the United States to them. The power of directing a change is vested by law in that Officer.
LIMITATION OF CONSULAR JURISDICTION.
615. The power of commencing original civil and criminal R.S.. seca 4087, proceedings is vested in Consular Officers exclusively, except that capital cases for murder or insurrection against the Government of either of the countries named in the statute by citizens of the United States, or offenses against the public peace amounting to felony under the laws of the United States, may be tried before the Minister of the United States in the country where the offense is committed, if allowed jurisdiction; and except also that original jurisdiction is vested in said Ministers, respectively, in cases where a Consular Officer shall happen to be interested either as party or witness.
R. S., secs. 4089, 4204, 4105,
R. S., sec. 4106,
R. S., secs. 4102, 4106.
616. They can also, sitting alone, determine all criminal cases where the fine imposed does not exceed five hundred dollars, or the term of imprisonment does not exceed ninety days; and may impose fines to the extent of fifty dollars, or imprisonment not exceeding twenty-four hours, for contempt committed in the presence of the court, or for failure to obey a summons. But a Consul, sitting alone for the trial of offenses and misdemeanors, shall decide finally all cases where the fine imposed does not exceed one hundred dollars, or the term of imprisonment does not exceed sixty days.
617. They may also, when of opinion that legal questions may arise in which assistance may be useful, or that a severer punishment is required, summon associates, not more than four in number, taken by lot from a list to be previously approved by the Minister, to sit with them on the trial, each of whom is to enter upon the record his judgment and opiniɔn, and to sign the same; but the Consul himself gives the judgment in the case, whether it accords with that of his associates or not.
618. In trials for capital offenses, there must be not less than four associates, who must all agree with the Consul in order to convict, and the opinion must be approved by the Minister before there can be a conviction.
619. They have exclusive jurisdiction in civil proceedings where the damage demanded does not exceed five hundred dollars.
620. When the amount demanded exceeds five hundred dollars, or when the Consul thinks the case involves legal perplexities, and that assistance will be useful, he may summon to his aid not less than two nor more than three associates, to be selected from a list of persons nominated by the Consul for the purposes of the act to the Minister, and approved by him. They shall hear the case with him. The Consul, however, is to give the judgment. If they agree with him, the judgment is final. If they or any of them disagree, the opinions of all are to be noted on the record and subscribed by them, and the judgment of the Consul is then subject to appeal.
621. In the infliction of punishments on persons convicted in Consular Courts, Consular Officers will be governed by the provisions of the statutes of the United States prescribed for similar offenses, and will be careful that the sentence in each case is in conformity thereto. Consular Courts have no power to banish American convicts to the United States, or other countries; nor to send them to the United States to serve out their terms of imprisonment.
622. It is the duty of Consular Officers to encourage the settlement of controversies of a civil character by mutual agreement, or by submitting them to the decision of referees; and the form of such submission is to be acknowledged before the Consul. After hearing any case the referees are required to deliver their award sealed to the Consul, who is to open it in court. If he accepts the award he shall indorse the fact, and render judgment thereon. The parties, however, may always make a settlement before return is made to the Consul.
623. In all criminal cases, which are not of a heinous character, it is made lawful for the parties aggrieved or concerned therein, with the assent of the Minister in the country, or Consul, to adjust and settle the same among themselves upon pecuniary or other considerations.
624. It is the duty of a Consular Officer after arrival at his post to make himself acquainted with the leading resi
R. S.. sec. 4107 s. se
R. S., sec. 4107.
Punishment to conform to United
1 Whart. Int. L.
Dig. 805; 14 Att.
Gen. Op., 522.
Settlement of controversies. R. S., sec. 4098.
R. S., sec. 4099,
R. S., sec. 4106.
List of associ ates.
dent citizens of the United States, in order that he may nominate for the approval of the Minister a list of individuals for the purposes of the statute.
625. The list should be full, so as to embrace, if possible, every interest in the community. It should be composed exclusively of citizens of the United States of good repute residing at the place. It should be sent to the Minister for approval. From time to time it should be revised. No person should be permitted to act as an associate on a trial who has any interest, direct or contingent, in the result of the suit.
R. S.. secs. 4091, 4093, 4094, 4095
Appeal to Minis
626. The Minister is authorized to hear and decide all cases, criminal and civil, which may come before him by appeal, and to issue all processes necessary to execute the power conferred upon him; and he is fully empowered to decide finally any case upon the evidence which comes up with it, or to hear the parties further, if he thinks justice will be promoted thereby. And he may also prescribe the rules upon which new trials may be granted, either by the Consul or by himself, if asked for upon sufficient grounds. Provision is also made for appeal in certain cases from the decision of the Minister to the circuit court for the district of California.
627. An appeal may be taken to the Minister from a deR. S., sec. 4089. cision of a Consul acting alone, where the fine exceeds one hundred dollars or the term of imprisonment for misdemeanor exceeds sixty days.
628. If associates sit with the Consul in criminal proceedR. S., sec. 4106. ings (except capital and except in the case mentioned in the preceding paragraph), an appeal can be taken to the Minister only in the event of disagreement between the Consul and any of the associates.
In civil proceed
629. In civil proceedings an appeal can be taken to the R. S., sec. 4167. Minister only in cases in which associates sit with the Consul, and in which there is a disagreement of opinion.
To Minister and Circuit Court.
630. An appeal may be taken to the Minister from final R. S., secs. 4092, judgment in the Consular Courts of China and Japan, where the matter in dispute exceeds five hundred dollars, but does
not exceed two thousand five hundred dollars, exclusive of costs; and where the matter exceeds two thousand five hundred dollars, exclusive of costs, the appeal may be taken to the Circuit Court for the district of California.
MARSHALS, JAILS, ETC.
631. Provisions are made by law for the appointment of Marshals to Consular Courts to execute all process issued by R. S., sec. 4111. the courts. They are to give bonds for the faithful performance of their duties (Form No. 136), and to make quarterly returns to the Secretary of State, showing the nature of each case determined in the Consular Court, the proceedings in connection therewith, and the disposition of the fines and fees (Form No. 13). The quarterly report of a Marshal should be sent to the Department of State by the Consul at the same time with other quarterly reports.
632. In case there should be a vacancy in the office of Vacancy in MarMarshal at the Consulate to which one of the Marshals provided for by statute has been assigned, the Consul may appoint one for the time being, under his hand and seal, reporting his action to the Department.
633. The Consul-General at Shanghai and the ConsulGeneral at Kanagawa are to provide suitable buildings to be used as prisons for American convicts in China and Japan, respectively. Consuls at other Chinese and Japanese ports will be allowed a reasonable sum for the hire of constables and care of offenders, the amount of which will be fixed by the Secretary of State. Where Congress makes no provision in the Diplomatic and Consular appropriation acts for the rent of Consular Court-rooms, or for the compensation of constables, Consular Officers will discontinue all charges therefor. In the absence of such appropriation the office of constable will be treated as practically abrogated.
Jail at Shanghai and Kanagawa. R. S., secs. 4122,
Report on condition of estates of
634. Hereafter, Consular Officers charged with the judicial functions referred to in this article will be required decedents. to make a semi-annual report to the Department of State in the case of each estate of deceased American citizens that has come within their probate jurisdiction. The first report shall be made within six months after the death, and subse
Moneys of es tates to be deliv
quent reports at the end of every six months; but the Department may at any time call for such special reports as it may deem proper. These reports will embrace the amount of the decedent's estate, both personal and real, the names of the parties interested, so far as known, the name of the administrator or of the executor, if there be a will, the exact amount of money that has come to the hands of the court, or to those of the administrator or executor, and if there has been any distribution of the estate, the amount of such distribution and to whom made, and the amount of all expenses, and court or other fees received. They should also contain a clear statement of the judicial proceedings in each case, together with any information that will enable the Department to reach an accurate understanding of its condition. 635. Upon the entry on duty of a successor to a Consul, the outgoing Consul shall turn over to the former all moneys that may be in his hands belonging to the estates of deceased citizens, taking triplicate receipts therefor, one of which is to be retained by the outgoing Consul, one deposited in the Consulate, and the third transmitted to the Department of State. If a Consul is removed, or if he resigns and leaves his post before the arrival of his successor, the transfer of such moneys shall be made to the Vice-Consular Officer and like receipts taken.
636. The instructions in this article have been carefully revised by the Treasury Department, and have the sanction of the Secretary of the Treasury. Consular Officers will take particular note of the forms in which several important changes have been made.
1. AUTHENTICATION OF INVOICES OF IMPORTATIONS INTO THE UNITED STATES.
637. All invoices of importations from countries in which H. S., Sec. 2843, there are such officers* must be produced before and authen
* In countries without a United States Consular Officer, the authentication is made, 1st, by a Consul of a country in amity with the United States, who resides there; or, 2d, if there be no such Consul, then by two respectable resident merchants.