LUTWAK V. UNITED STATES, 344 U. S. 604 (1953)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Lutwak v. United States, 344 U.S. 604 (1953)

Lutwak v. United States

No. 66

Argued December 8-9, 1952

Decided February 9, 1953

344 U.S. 604


Petitioners were convicted of a conspiracy to defraud the United States by obtaining the illegal entry thereto of three aliens as spouses of honorably discharged veterans. They had conspired to have three such veterans journey to Paris, there go through marriage ceremonies with three aliens, bring them to the United States, and obtain their entry under the War Bridges Act. The parties to the marriages were not to live together as husband and wife, and were to take whatever legal steps were necessary to sever the legal ties; but these facts were to be concealed from the immigration authorities.


1. For the purposes of this case, the question of the validity of the marriages is immaterial. Pp. 344 U. S. 610-613.

2. In the circumstances of this case, the trial court did not err in permitting the "wives" to testify against their "husbands." Pp. 344 U. S. 613-615.

3. It was not error for the trial court to admit testimony as to various acts of different petitioners, done after the conspiracy ended, without limiting the evidence to the particular defendant who performed the act, where the acts were relevant to show the spuriousness of the marriages and the intent of the parties in going through the marriage ceremonies. Pp. 344 U. S. 615-618.

4. On the record in this case, the admission against all of the conspirators, though not present when it was made, of a single declaration made after the conspiracy had ended was harmless error under Rule 52(a) of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure. Pp. 344 U. S. 618-620.

195 F.2d 748, affirmed.

The Court of Appeals affirmed petitioners' conviction of a conspiracy to defraud the United States.195 F.2d 748. This Court granted certiorari. 344 U.S. 809. Affirmed, p. 344 U. S. 620.

Page 344 U. S. 605

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