to Mr. Pendleton.
Washington , December 20, 1887.
Sir: Your dispatch No. 547, of the 3d instant, relative to the case of Hans Jacobsen, arrested and confined for desertion from military service prior to emigration, has been received and considered.
In view of the apparently conclusive evidence furnished to the Department by you that Hans Jacobsen, when he came to America at the age of twenty years, deserted from the German army, and is now, after trial and conviction therefor, under sentence for such desertion, the Department approves your course in not presenting the case to the German Government, without instructions to do so. The second article of the naturalization treaty of 1868 expressly provides that a naturalized citizen of the one party, on his return to the country of his origin, remains liable to trial and punishment for offenses committed against its laws prior to his emigration, saving always the limitations established by the laws of his original country.
As now before the Department, the complaint of Jacobsen seems clearly to be based on a penal prosecution expressly permitted by the treaty.
I am, etc.,