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Opinion of the Court.
for which the judgment was rendered was exacted on June 20th, 1865. This suit was not brought until July 1st, 1871. If, therefore, the limitation relied on is applicable to this case, the action was barred. The defendants in error insist, however, that the limitation does not apply to the present action. Their contention is that the suits barred are for arrests, imprisonments, and other crimes ejusdem generis, and that the limitation only applies to trespasses upon and wrongs done the person, and not the property, of the plaintiff. In support of this view they rely upon the rule, as their counsel state it, that when general words follow particular words, the former must be construed as applicable to the things or persons particularly mentioned. . We think the construction insisted on is too narrow. The rule of interpretation correctly stated is, that where particular words of a statute are followed by general, the general words are restricted in meaning to objects of like kind with those specified. Dwarris, 2d Ed. 621. But this rule, even if applicable to the statute under consideration, is subject to the qualification that general words will be construed more broadly than specific, where such construction is clearly necessary to give effect to the meaning of the legislature. Foster v. Blount, 18 Ala. 687; United States v. Briggs, 9 How. 351.
The 4th section of the statute of which the section under consideration forms a part throws light upon the general purpose of Congress in its enactment. That section provides that “any order of the President or under his authority made at any time during the existence of the present rebellion shall be a defence in all courts to any action or prosecution, civil or criminal, pending or to be commenced, for any search, seizure, arrest, or imprisonment, made, done, or committed, or acts omitted to be done, under and by virtue of such order, or under color of any law of Congress.” 12 Stat. 756.
It would be a strained construction to hold that, while $ 4 expressly protected the party who made a search, seizure, or arrest, or subjected another to imprisonment under the order of the President, $ 7 applied the two years limitation to an action brought to recover damages for the arrest or imprison
ment, but not to an action brought to recover damages for a search or seizure.
The general purpose of Congress in the passage of that act appears plainly to have been to give a degree of protection to all persons acting during the rebellion under authority of the President or Congress of the United States. A construction which gives the benefit of one of its provisions to parties charged with offences against the person, and not to those charged with wrongs and trespasses to the property of the citizen, robs the act of a great part of its intended effect, and is clearly unsound and untenable.
But it is unnecessary to discuss further this assignment of error. The point has been expressly decided against the contention of the defendants in error by this court at the present term in the case of Mitchell v. Clark, ante, 634, where it was held that the limitation of the statute applied to wrongs to the estate as well as to the arrest and imprisonment of the person of the plaintiff. The judgment of the Circuit Court must be reversed, and the case remanded to that court, with directions to order a new trial.
MR. JUSTICE FIELD did not sit in this case or take any part in its decision.
UNITED STATES v. RYDER & Another.
APPEAL FROM THE CIRCUIT COURT OF THE UNITED STATES FOR THE
DISTRICT OF NEW JERSEY.
Argued December 12th, 1883.-Decided March 10th, 1884.
Subrogation-Recognizance. Without an express contract of indemnity a surety on a recognizance for the
appearance of a person charged with committing a criminal offence against the laws of the United States, cannot maintain an action against the principal to recover any sums he may have been obliged to pay by reason of forfeiture of the principal, and he is not entitled to be subrogated to the
Statement of Facts.
rights of the United States, and to enjoy the benefit of the government
priority. Subrogating a surety on a recognizance in a criminal case to the peculiar
remedies which the government enjoys is against public policy, and tends
to subvert the object and purpose of the recognizance. 8 3468 Rev. Stat. conferring on sureties on bonds to the United States who are
forced to pay the obligation the priority of recovery enjoyed by the United States does not apply to recognizances in criminal proceedings, and does not authorize an action in the name of the United States.
The bill in this case was filed at the suit of the United States to obtain payment of a recognizance for $10,000 from the property of one Edward P. Williams, or the proceeds thereof, in the hands of Seth B. Ryder, one of the defendants. The recognizance was entered into on the 8th day of November, 1876, by Williams and three other persons, conditioned that Williams “should appear in person at Trenton, before the United States District Court there, and submit to such sentence as the said court should order and direct.”
Williams did not appear according to the condition of the recognizance, but absconded, and, as the bill alleges, “became a fraudulent, absconding, concealed and absent debtor, and at the same time was a convicted criminal and a fugitive from justice," and never has since appeared nor been found. The bill further alleges that a scire facias was issued, and a judgment entered upon the recognizance, and an execution issued to the marshal of the district against the goods and lands of the cognizors; and that certain real estate of the sureties was levied upon, insufficient (as alleged) to satisfy the execution ; but that no levy was made upon the goods and lands of Williams, for the reason that they were in the possession of said Ryder, who claimed the right to hold the same partly as assignee under a general assignment made by Williams for the benefit of his creditors in July, 1876, and partly as auditor in attachment appointed by the Circuit Court for the county of Union, in the State of New Jersey, under an attachment issued against Williams on the 15th of November, 1876, and levied on the 23d of same month. The bill alleges that Ryder has since sold the property in his possession by order of the Circuit Opinion of the Court.
Court of Union County, and has in his hands the proceeds, amounting to several thousand dollars.
The defendant demurred to the bill, and the demurrer was sustained and the bill dismissed. From that decree the plaintiff appealed to this court.
Mr. Assistant Attorney-General Maury said that the United States had no interest in the suit: that the real promoters were the sureties on the bond, who claimed to be subrogated in the place of the United States.
Mr. J. Hubley Ashton for Woodruff, Clarke, and Kipling, sureties of Williams.
Mr. John R. Emery for appellees.
MR. JUSTICE BRADLEY delivered the opinion of the court. After stating the facts in the foregoing language, he continued :
The grounds on which relief seems to be claimed by the bill, as far as can be gathered from the statements and the argument of counsel, are: First. That the United States is a judgment and execution creditor, whose remedy at law is exhausted, and that the funds in the hands of Ryder are equitable assets which ought to be applied in satisfaction of the judgment: Second. That the recognizance operated as a lien on the real estate of Williams from the time of its acknowledgment and recordation: Third. That under the act of Congress in that behalf, the United States is entitled to priority over all other creditors of Williams, he being insolvent, and having made a general assignment of his property for the benefit of his creditors, and his property being attached as that of an absconding debtor: Fourth. That the sureties of Williams have, by way of subrogation, a right to the enforcement of all the remedies which the United States is entitled to against Williams' property, before resort can be had against them and their property, or to indemnify them in case of their satisfying the claim of the United States; it being conceded on the argument that the bill was filed, and that the suit is prosecuted in the interest and Opinion of the Court.
for the benefit of the sureties. The allegation on this subject in the bill is as follows:
“And your orator further shows that the said sureties, being aware that the said Seth B. Ryder has in his hands a large amount of money belonging to their principal and subject to the statutory claim of your orator to priority, as aforesaid, have claimed, as a right belonging to them as sureties, that your orator before selling their lands under said execution should seek relief in this court to compel the said Seth B. Ryder to apply the said fund to the satisfaction of said execution, as he is bound to do by the statute, giving your orator a priority upon said fund, in order that the said moneys of their principal in the hands of said Ryder may be applied to your orator's claim in exoneration of the said sureties, so far as the same will extend.”
At the coming on of the argument on this appeal, the Solicitor-General of the United States stated, in open court, that the government has no interest in the suit, the amount of the recognizance having been paid by the sureties; and that the suit is prosecuted for the benefit of the sureties only; and this statement was admitted by the counsel for the sureties, who alone argued the cause for the appellants.
The questions for us to decide are:
First, Whether, since the recognizance has been paid by the sureties, they are subrogated to the rights of the United States :
Secondly, Whether, if thus subrogated, they are entitled to prosecute in the name of the United States :
Thirdly, If the first two questions are to be answered in the affirmative, whether a case is made by the bill to entitle the complainants to relief.
First : Are the sureties subrogated to the rights of the United States? The general right of sureties, when paying the debt of their principal, to be subrogated to the rights of the creditor, whether as a mortgagee, pledgee, or holder of a judgment or execution, or any other security, has been so often and so fully discussed that nothing further need be added on that subject. The recent treatise of Mr. Sheldon on the Law of Sub