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MISCELLANEOUS OFFENSES AGAINST THE UNITED STATES.
Act of February 25, 1885 (23 Stat., 321). Unlawful fencing.
Sec. 1. That all inclosures of any public lands in any State or Territory of the United States, heretofore or to be hereafter made, erected, or constructed by any person, party, association, or corporation, to any of which land included within the inclosure the person, party, association, or corporation making or controlling the inclosure had no claim or color of title made or acquired in good faith, or an asserted right thereto by or under claim, made in good faith with a view to entry thereof at the proper land office under the general laws of the United States at the time any such inclosure was or shall be made, are hereby declared to be unlawful, and the maintenance, erection, construction, or control of any such inclosure is hereby forbidden and prohibited; and the assertion of a right to the exclusive use and occupancy of any part of the public lands of the United States in any State or any of the Territories of the United States, without claim, color of title, or asserted right as above specified as to inclosure, is likewise declared unlawful, and hereby prohibited. Civil suit; injunction.
SEC. 2. That it shall be the duty of the district attorney of the United States for the proper district, on affidavit filed with him by any citizen of the United States that section one of this act is being violated, showing a description of the land inclosed with reasonable certainty, not necessarily by metes and bounds nor by governmental subdivisions of surveyed lands, but only so that the inclosure may be identified, and the persons guilty of the violation, as nearly as may be, and by description, if the name can not on reasonable inquiry be ascertained, to institute a civil suit in the proper United States district or circuit court, or Territorial district court, in the name of the United States, and against the parties named or described who shall be in charge of or controlling the inclosure complained of as defendants; and jurisdiction is also hereby conferred on any United States district or circuit court, or Territorial district court, having jurisdiction over the locality where the land inclosed, or any part thereof, shall be situated, to hear and determine proceedings in equity, by writ of injunction, to restrain violations of the provisions of this act; and it shall be suflicient to give the court jurisdiction if service of original process be had in any civil proceeding on any agent or employee having charge or control of the inclosure; and any suit brought under the provisions of this section shall have precedence for hearing and trial over other cases on the civil docket of the court, and shall be tried and determined at the earliest practicable day. In any case, if the inclosure shall be found to be unlawful, the court shall make the proper order, judgment, or decree for the destruction of the inclosure, in a summary way, unless the inclosure shall be removed by the defendant within five days after the order of the court. Obstruction forbidden.
1 It is unlawful under this act for persons who have acquired the right to use railroad odd sections to construct a fence located entirely on the odd sections, but in such a manner as to inclose with the odd sections some of the even sections belonging to the Government. (Camfield v. United States, 167 U. S., 538.) In this case the court relied upon the maxim that one must use his own so as not to injúre another; and as this gave rise to the suggestion that the result would involve the exercise by the United States of police power within a State, the court said, “ We do not think the admission of a Territory as a State, deprives it (Congress) of the power of legislating for the protection of the public lands, though it may thereby involve the exercise of what is ordinarily known as the police power, so long as such power is directed solely to its own protection. A different rule would place the public domain of the United States completely at the mercy of State legislation."
SEC. 3. That no person, by force, threats, intimidation, or by any fencing or inclosing, or any other unlawful means, shall prevent or obstruct, or shall combine and confederate with others to prevent or obstruct, any person from peaceably entering upon or establishing a settlement or residence on any tract of public land subject to settlement or entry under the public land laws of the United States, or shall prevent or obstruct free passage or transit over or through the public lands: Provided, This section shall not be held to affect the right or title of persons who have gone upon, improved, or occupied said lands under the land laws of the United States, claiming title thereto, in good faith. Criminal action.
SEC. 4. That any person violating any of the provisions hereof, whether as owner, part owner, agent, or who shall aid, abet, counsel, advise, or assist in any violation hereof, shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor, and fined in a sum not exceeding one thousand dollars or be imprisoned not exceeding one year, or both, for each offense. (As amended by act Mar. 10, 1908, 35 Stat., 40.) Removal by force.
Sec. 5. That the President is hereby authorized to take such measures as shall be necessary to remove and destroy any unlawful inclosure of any of said lands, and to employ civil or military force as may be necessary for that purpose. Inclosures of less than 160 acres.
SEC. 6. That where the alleged unlawful inclosure includes less than one hundred and sixty acres of land, no suit shall be brought under the provisions of this act without authority from the Secretary of the Interior. Pending suits.
Sec. 7. That nothing herein shall affect any pending suits to work their discontinuance, but as to them hereafter they shall be prosecuted and determined under the provisions of this act.
Criminal Code of March 4, 1909 (36 Stat., 1088). Destruction of Government telephone line or property.
Sec. 60. Whoever shall willfully or maliciously injure or destroy any of the works, property, or material of any telegraph, telephone, or cable line, or system, operated or controlled by the United States, , whether constructed or in process of construction, or shall willfully or maliciously interfere in any way with the working or use of any such line, or system, or shall willfully or maliciously obstruct, hinder, or delay the transmission of any communication over any such line, or system, shall be fined not more than one thousand dollars, or imprisoned not more than three years, or both.
Destruction of Government survey corners or marks.
Sec. 57. Whoever shall willfully destroy, deface, change, or remove to another place any section corner, quarter-section corner, or meander post, on any Government line of survey, or shall willfully cut down any witness tree or any tree blazed to mark the line of a Government survey, or shall willfully deface, change, or remove any monument or bench mark of any Government survey, shall be fined not more than two hundred and fifty dollars, or imprisoned not more than six months, or both. Breaking inclosures, stock trespass.
Sec. 56. Whoever shall knowingly and unlawfully break, open or destroy any gate, fence, hedge, or wall inclosing any lands of the United States which, in pursuance of any law, have been reserved or purchased by the United States for any public use; or whoever shall drive any cattle, horses, hogs, or other live stock upon any such lands for the purpose of destroying the grass or trees on said lands, or where they may destroy the said grass or trees; or whoever shall knowingly permit his cattle, horses, hogs, or other live stock, to enter through any such inclosure upon any such lands of the United States, where such cattle, horses, hogs, or other live stock may or can destroy the grass or trees or other property of the United States on the said lands, shall be fined not more than five hundred dollars, or imprisoned not more than one year, or both: Provided, That nothing in this section shall be construed to apply to unreserved public lands. False personification of United States officer.
SEC. 32. Whoever, with intent to defraud either the United States or any person, shall falsely assume or pretend to be an officer or employee acting under the authority of the United States or any department, or any officer of the Government thereof, and shall take upon himself to act as such, or shall in such pretended character demand or obtain from any person or from the United States, or any department, or any officer of the Government thereof, any money, paper, document, or other valuable thing, shall be fined not more than one thousand dollars, or imprisoned not more than three years, or both. Robbery of United States property.
SEC. 46. Whoever shall rob another of any kind or description of personal property belonging to the United States, or shall feloniously take and carry away the same, shall be fined not more than five thousand dollars, or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both. Embezzlement, theft, etc.
SEC. 47. Whoever shall embezzle, steal, or purloin any money, property, record, voucher, or valuable thing whatever, of the moneys, goods, chattels, records, or property of the United States, shall be fined not more than five thousand dollars, or imprisoned not more than five years, or both. Receiving stolen property.
SEC. 48. Whoever shall receive, conceal, or aid in concealing, or shall have or retain in his possession with intent to convert to his own use or gain, any money, property, record, voucher, or valuable
thing whatever, of the moneys, goods, chattels, records, or property of the United States, which has theretofore been embezzled, stolen, or purloined by any other person, knowing the same to have been so embezzled, stolen, or purloined, shall be fined not more than five thousand dollars, or imprisoned not more than five years, or both; and such person may be tried either before or after the conviction of the principal offender. Perjury.
SEC. 125. Whoever, having taken an oath before a competent tribunal, officer, or person, in any case in which a law of the United States authorizes an oath to be administered, that he will testify, declare, depose, or certify truly, or that any written testimony, declaration, deposition, or certificate by him subscribed, is true, shall willfully and contrary to such oath state or subscribe any material matter which he does not believe to be true, is guilty of perjury, and shall be fined not more than two thousand dollars and imprisoned not more than five years. Hunting on bird refuges.
SEC. 84. Whoever shall hunt, trap, capture, willfully disturb, or kill any bird of any kind whatever, or take the eggs of any such bird, on any lands of the United States which have been set apart or reserved as breeding grounds for birds by any law, proclamation, or executive order, except under such rules and regulations as the Secretary of Agriculture may, from time to time, prescribe, shall be fined not more than five hundred dollars, or imprisoned not more than six months, or both.
(The foregoing section seems to be a codification of the act of June 28, 1906 (34 Stat., 536). That act, however, is not specifically repealed, and it contains the following proviso: “Provided, That the provisions of this act shall not apply to the Black Hills Forest Reservation, in South Dakota.")
Act of January 24, 1905 (33 Stat., 614); act of June 29, 1906 (34 Stat., 607).
The foregoing acts, which authorize the establishment of the Wichita game and bird refuge and the Grand Canyon game refuge contain penal provisions substantially the same as in section 84, supra. Trespass on Bull Run National Forest.
Sec. 55. Whoever, except forest rangers and other persons employed by the United States to protect the forest, Federal and State officers in the discharge of their duties, and the employees of the water board of the city of Portland, State of Oregon, shall knowingly trespass upon any part of the reserve known as Bull Run National Forest, in the Cascade Mountains, in the State of Oregon, or shall enter thereon for the purpose of grazing stock, or shall engage in grazing stock thereon, or shall permit stock of any kind to graze thereon, shall be fined not more than five hundred dollars, or imprisoned not more than six months, or both. Protection of American antiquities.
Act of June 8, 1906 (34 Stat., 225). Any person who shall appropriate, excavate, injure, or destroy any historic or prehistoric ruin or monument, or any object of antiquity, situated on lands owned or controlled by the Government of the United States, without the permission of the Secretary of the Department of the Government having jurisdiction over the lands on which said antiquities are situated, shall, upon conviction, be fined in a sum of not more than five hundred dollars or be imprisoned for a period of not more than ninety days, or shall suffer both fine and imprisonment, in the discretion of the court.
The remainder of the foregoing act, authorizing the establishment of national monuments, is printed ante, page 23.
DECISIONS. A homestead entryman does not have the right to remove sand and gravel from the land embraced in his unperfected entry for the purpose of sale. (Litch v. Scott, 40 L. D., 467.)
Persons obstructing either ingress or egress to a National Forest over trails constructed by the department, even over lands lying outside the National Forests, may be proceeded against in trespass and by proceedings for the removal of their fences and other obstructions. (1 Sol. Op., 482.)
The willfull and malicious cutting of Forest Service telephone lines is punishable under section 60 of the Criminal Code of March 4, 1909. (1 Sol. Op., 283.)
Forest officers are authorized under the act of February 6, 1905, to make arrests for depredations on national monuments within National Forests. (2 Sol. Op., 670.)
Persons injuring or defacing the Oregon Caves, which have been reserved as a national monument, may be prosecuted under the criminal provisions of the national monument act. (2 Sol. Op., 670.)
An affidavit of settlement, made by an applicant to enter agricultural lands within a forest reserve, under the act of June 11, 1906, as required by the Commissioner of the General Land Office, was one taken in a case in which a law of the United States authorizes an oath to be administered, as provided by section 5392, Revised Statutes, and was therefore a proper subject for prosecution for perjury. (United States v. Nelson, 199 Fed., 464.)
AUTHORITY OF FOREST OFFICERS. Power to arrest.
Act of February 6, 1905 (33 Stat., 700). All persons employed in the forest reserve and national park service of the United States shall have authority to make arrests for the violation of the laws and regulations relating to the forest reserves and national parks, and any person so arrested shall be taken before the nearest United States commissioner, within whose jurisdiction the reservation or national park is located, for trial; and upon sworn information by any competent person any United States commissioner in the proper jurisdiction shall issue process for the arrest of any person charged with the violation of said laws and regulations; but nothing herein contained shall be construed as preventing the arrest by any officer of the United States, without process, of any person taken in the act of violating said laws and regulations. Administering oaths.
Sec. 183, R. S. Any officer or clerk of any of the Departments lawfully detailed to investigate frauds or attempts to defraud on the