No. 93.
Mr. Reinberg to Mr. Davis.

No. 101.]

Sir: The U. S. S. Wachusett arrived at this port on the 9th instant, and at 7 p.m. of the same day I received Secretary Frelinghuysen’s cablegram as follows:

Great interest here in Santos case. Two resolutions passed the House. If necessary employ counsel, Department’s expense, for his and his property’s protection. See him in person.

On the following day, the 10th instant, Commander Mahan and self called on His Excellency the President, requesting again the liberation of Mr. Santos. His Excellency disclaimed on this occasion any executive power, informing us that as the seat of the Government was at Quito, and that as he was here on a visit, the present head of the Republic was the Vice-President of the Republic. However, he confidentially stated to us that Mr. Santos was an Ecuadorian citizen in accordance with article 2 of the naturalization treaty of 1872 between the United States and Ecuador. As a proof of his statement he further said that Mr. Santos having returned to his native country and established a commercial house at Bahia, and having resided more than six years after his return without having visited the United States during that period, he had lost his rights as an American citizen and was again a citizen of Ecuador.

[Page 234]

I in return cited Mm the following articles:

Article II.

If a naturalized citizen of either country shall renew his residence in that where he was horn, without an intention of returning to that where he was naturalized, he shall he held to have reassumed the obligations of his original citizenship, and to have renounced that which he had obtained by naturalization.

Article III.

A residence of more than two years in the native country of a naturalized citizen shall be construed as an intention on his part to stay there without returning to that where he was naturalized. This presumption, however, may be rebutted by evidence to the contrary,

and told him that my Government considered Mr. Santos a citizen of the United States, and that as the matter of his citizenship was in doubt for the reasons above given, Commander Mahad would immediately proceed to the port Bahia with Agent Goddard for the purpose of seeing the prisoner, and that he would take Mr. Santos’s declarations and learn whether the prisoner’s intention was to reside forever in Ecuador or whether this presumption could be rebutted. I consequently telegraphed Secretary Frelinghuysen:

Wachusett here. Commander and self have seen President Caamaño, who disclaims executive power, but states confidentially Santos is Ecuadorian citizen, as he has returned to and resided in Ecuador six years. Quotes naturalization treaty 1872. Wachusett will go to Bahia with Goddard to see if Santos can rebut presumption.

On the 13th instant the U. S. S. Wachusett left for Bahia, to take Goddard on board and return to Manta, as I have lately learned that the prisoner has been now removed to Monte-Cristi, a town one hour’s ride from the port Manta.

On the 11th of this month, nearly fifty days since the day Mr. Santos was imprisoned, I received a letter from him (copy of which I inclose). In it he says that his trial has not yet begun, and this treatment, even if he is an Ecuadorian citizen, shows how justice is administered in this South American Republic.

Hon. Horatio N. Beach, consul-general, now at Quito, has been informed by telegraph of the arrival of the Wachusett, of all the steps so far taken by this office.

I am; &c.,

United States Vice-Consul-General.
[Inclosure in No. 101.]

Mr. Santos to Mr. Reinberg.

Mr. Martin Reinberg,
United States Vice-Consul-General, Guayaquil:

Sir: Your note of the 22d instant duly received, asking information about my arrest by the Ecuadorian authorities.

I was arrested on the 9th of December of last year, without notifying me of what accusations the Government has against me, and ever since then I have been under arrest with strict orders not to be allowed to see anybody. The condition imposed upon me for my release has been a war tax, $30,000. Moreover, the Government officials have been occupying in house ever since, and taken possession of almost everything belonging to the firm of Santos, Hevia H’nos, of which I am the senior member and only representative here. As I have not been allowed to communicate with [Page 235] anybody, I have not been able to give a power of attorney to any one to represent the business I managed, and in consequence our firm is almost bankrupt. I have been told that our stores have been opened by soldiers and the greater part of the contents taken by Government officials. I have even been obliged to send my family, four sisters, to Panama, as they made our house barracks for soldiers.

Consular Agent E. T. Goddard and Mr. J. M. Dickerson have gone to Guayaquil and they can give you all the information you require. These gentlemen know all about me and know what my conduct has been during the short period of the revolutionary movement in this province. Even to-day I have difficulty in communicating with anyone to bring about a speedy trial. I continue under military arrest, and the authorities say they will not release me unless I give $30,000, and will not put me on trial.

Mr. Daniel Lopez will be here in Porto Viejo to-day or to-morrow, and I am going to order him to send me a lawyer from Guayaquil to attend to my case, and hope you will give him instructions the day he must proceed, so as not to allow the authorities here to delay the trial, as they are responsible for the arbitrary acts committed.

I am told that I am arrested on suspicion of having aided the revolutionary movement, and by law they cannot detain me more than three days without being brought to trial, and now I have been more than fifty days without being brought to trial.

I am, faithfully, yours,