Mr. Wetter to Mr. Uhl.

No. 88.]

Sir: I have the honor, in continuation of my No. 82, of March 25, 1895, to transmit yon herein such documents, copies of letters, etc., as I have in hand re this affair, as also to state that, contrary to my expectations, neither copies of the evidence, minutes of proceedings, or of the letters, etc., introduced in this affair have been sent me.

The night before Bray’s departure he brought me down a packet of papers and requested that I keep same until he could safely send for them. A little questioning brought out the fact that they were the notes made by Waller’s lawyer, the Frenchman, Le Garrac, from the evidence against Waller. He then offered them to me if I would dispatch them to the Department, On examination I find same very incomplete, so much so as not to be worth transmitting. Should the Department, however, desire them I will translate and transmit them at once.

Now, as to such details as I have not given in my two former dispatches or as are not contained in inclosures.

[Page 320]

Waller, about January 20, sent a letter addressed to a Mr. Tessier, an English-Mauritian at Antananarivo, a friend of his. Therein was a letter addressed to Waller’s wife. Both these letters were dated January 23, 1895, but were mailed January 20, by Waller himself, on board the Umlazi, of the Donald Gurrie Line, and were addressed “Antananarivo, via Natal and Vatomandry.”

The letter to Tessier was full of gossip from Tamatave of a character very uncomplimentary to the French soldiers, but not containing any contraband information. It furthermore called Tessier’s attention in a very pointed manner to certain news contained in the inclosed letter to Mrs. Waller, and insisted strenuously that same must be acted on at once, etc.

The letter to Mrs. Waller started out with a most malignant tirade against myself of the Geldart-Lyons cases; asserted that myself and Geldart had conspired to ruin Lyons; that Lyons stood no better chance to get justice than Waller did before me, etc. Was also very bitter against Duder, Poupard, and Geldart, using about these words:“Geldart, Duder, and Poupard are as thick now as three in a bed, and Wetter is their god. I will inform you that D. and P. are on their way to Antananarivo, and they will likely reach there long before this letter leaves Tamatave. Please inform Mr. Tessier and our friends that both of these men have been sent up there by the French to find out secretly all the movements of the Hova Government, which they will send to the French authorities from time to time. Therefore the Government had better keep a strict watch on these men and order them from the capital as soon as possible. Both of them are for the French.* * * And please destroy it (the letter) as soon as you and Mr. Tessier have read it, and do not mention to anyone but Mr. Tessier and the secretaries about the information which I send you.” The letter then gives a two or three page dissertation on the difficulties of living in Tamatave, some very bitter anecdotes about the French ravaging Malagassy women, and winds up with instructions that if Waller should die of smallpox from being here Mrs. Waller was to have his solicitors in Washington sue the Administration and myself for $20,000 damages, with interest, for forcing him to remain here exposed to such dangers, etc.

Among Waller’s papers seized at his house they found some letters from a Malagassy named Ratsimanana, which related mainly to a recital of the many endeavors he had made to borrow money for Waller so as to pay off the Crockett claim, and to some commissions Waller was to execute for him in London. Another, I believe, spoke of some revolvers Waller had promised him; and another had a passage cut out. Of this letter Waller said in an unmailed letter to his wife, found among his papers, I believe, “It was a godsend that they didn’t get to open Ratsimanana’s letter. If they had Paul would have been shot on suspicion. Let me warn you to be careful.”

Personally, I have no doubt, nor has anyone else here, white or black, that had Waller’s letters of January 23 reached Antananarivo, Duder and Poupard would have been murdered. Whether Waller really meant them by “D. and P.,” I cannot say. He says it was Draper and Purdy, but no one ever heard of such parties at the capital, while Duder and Poupard were supposed to be in Antananarivo at the same time he wrote these letters.

But, in my opinion, none of this business concerned the French. If Waller were scoundrel enough to attempt to have these men’s lives taken by the Hovas, as they were Americans it would concern this consular court and not the French.

[Page 321]

Waller was not here of his own volition. He was here because he dared not attempt to leave until he had satisfied the Crockett judgment.

Waller’s wife and a person under British protection, a British subject like Tessier, could not be considered enemies to France.

Again, these French laws of siege, etc., are for European wars. Where there is now no extraterritorial jurisdiction accorded consuls they can’t apply, without grave modifications, in such countries as Madagascar.

I sent for Le Garrac before the Waller trial and suggested these and many other points for Waller’s defense, but he was either unwilling to make use of them or afraid to. I offered him any assistance I could render him, even as I had done to Girandeau, before he threw up the case, and sent him the office copies of Wheaton and Wharton, with salient and pertinent passages marked. He requested me to do nothing until after the first trial, then if he lost he could use my influence, etc., on the appeal or revision.

Le Garrac was present when I saw Waller on the 20th, and he, at my request, had some complaint Waller made about his food attended to. The very harshness of the sentence—the extreme penalty of the law—gave Le Garrac great hopes for his appeal. And now he and the majority here say Waller will be free as soon as the war is over. Yes, he may be; but the war has not begun yet. It may last a very, very long time. If the French are not doing any more at Majonga than they are doing here it certainly will.

I am, etc.,

Edward Telfair Wetter
[Inclosure 1 in No. 88—Translation.]

Notice of arrest.

No. 31.]

Mr. Consul: I have the honor, Mr. Commandant Kiesel being absent, of informing you that I have to-day issued an order handing over John Waller, who is accused of having infringed article 3 of the decree of January 18, 1895, relative to the sending of letters, to the military justice.

Will you accept, etc.,

[Inclosure 2 in No. 88—Translation.]

Lieutenant-Colonel Colonna to Mr. Wetter.

No. 627A.]

Mr. Consul: I have the honor to inform you that in virtue of an order issued by the deputy of the chief of the naval squadron, I have had John L. Waller, one of your countrymen, arrested to be impeached at the military tribunals.

John Waller took the liberty toward the end of January last to start on its way to Antananarivo a letter, which he took on board of the English mail directly. The boat was to carry it to Natal, whence, according to his calculations, the letter would be sent direct to Vatomandry, thus escaping the examination of the military authorities.

By so doing Waller infringed the prescriptions contained in article 3 of the decree of the deputy of the chief of the naval squadron dated January 18, 1895.

Besides this infringement the inquest, which I am about to order, will perhaps reveal graver deeds which the reading of this clandestine correspondence may make jurisdictionable.

Will you accept, etc.,

Commandant Superior of the Troops and of the Place in state of Siege
[Page 322]
[Inclosure 3 in No. 88.]

Mr. Wetter to Captain Kiesel.

No. 212.]

Sir: I have just been informed that at or about 2 p.m. to-day the gendarmes, acting, it is stated, under military orders, went to the present residence of Mr. John L. Waller, an American citizen and ex-consul of the United States at this place, and seized all his papers, documents, etc., and arrested his person.

Furthermore, that the said gendarmes also searched and took with them all papers, documents, etc., in said residence belonging to another American citizen, one Paul H. Bray.

I furthermore understand that when Mr. Waller demanded their authority for such high-handed measures he was shown a paper purporting to be a requisition from the military authorities, but the parties refused to state what charge was made against him or give any further information.

I must therefore request that I be immediately informed why Mr. Waller has been arrested, and on what charges; also where he has been incarcerated, etc.

As to my knowledge this person has been leading a most peaceable and quiet existence since his arrival here in September last. I must express my surprise at this action against him, which can only be warranted by a most grave breach of the laws, and sincerely hope for the sake of the good relations and friendship between France and the United States that the evidence in hand will warrant such extreme measures.

Requesting your earliest attention, I am, etc.,

Edward Telfair Wetter
[Inclosure 4 in No. 88.]

Mr. Waller’s appeal to Mr. Wetter.

Dear Sir: Mr. Woodford called to see me this evening and says that you are doing all you can to get me released from this trouble, which I am surprised and pleased to hear, since Mr. Girandeau told me that you positively informed him that you would not aid me in any manner. I think if I had had the benefit of your official influence to-day the judgment might have been different. But be that as it may I wish to ask your assistance and aid as an American citizen, as I have taken an appeal from judgment of to-day. I wish also to ask your pardon for the manner in which I mention your name in a letter to my wife, dated, I think, January 23, 1895. It was done in the heat of passion and under great mental pressure; therefore I here and now recall and expunge every reference to you from said letter. This I offered to do to Mr. Girandeau, but it seems that you refused it. Please aid me as an American, as you are the only official representative we have here.

Trusting to receive an affirmative reply, and that Mr. Woodford was not mistaken when he assured me that you will help me, and that you will pardon me for the adverse words used about you in the letter mentioned.

I have the honor to be, your obedient servant,

John L. Waller.

United States Consulate,
Tamatave, April 17, 1895.

I certify that the foregoing is an exact and verbatim copy of the original on file in this office.

Edward Telfair Wetter,
United States Consul, Acting
[Inclosure 5 in No. 88.]

Mr. Wetter to Mr. Waller.

No. 213.]

Sir: Your note dated March 18 was received on the afternoon of the 19th. It would have been replied to the same day but for certain assertions therein contained which I deemed it advisable to first inquire into.

[Page 323]

In view of your knowledge of paragraph 432, Consular Regulations, which states, “But their efforts should not be extended to those who have been willfully guilty of an infraction of the local laws,” I can understand your surprise at my using my consular position for the purpose of in any way protecting or attempting to secure you any amelioration of the penalty you have thus willfully laid yourself open to.

Such assistance as I can lawfully render you I have and will willingly accord you at all times, but you must distinctly understand that I can not take any steps for your benefit that do not come within the rights of every American, nor can I raise on your behalf any issue that may result in jeopardizing American interests or rights here unless such action be fully warranted in my opinion by the law of nations or be directly ordered by the Department of State.

As to the language made use of by you in the letter you mention, I do not desire to discuss that matter with you. There is no apology or excuse that you can possibly offer for same that will at all excuse it. Personally I am not a man to bear malice against anyone, nor have I ever indulged in the cowardly habits of “backbiting” and of kicking a man when he is down; therefore whatever I can lawfully do for you in my official capacity, I repeat, I have done and will continue to do.

There were two passages in your note which seemed to me inexplicable (I allude to the paragraphs wherein you state, respectively, “Since Mr. Girandeau told that you positively informed him that you would not aid me in any manner.” * * * “I here and now recall and expunge every reference to you from said letter; this I offered to do to Mr. Girandeau, but it seems that you refused it” * * *); therefore I called upon Mr. Girandeau and showed them to him this last evening, only to receive the assurance that they were false and untrue and base perversions on your part, Mr. Girandeau having never given you any such information nor held any conversation with me concerning such desire on your part to excuse the language you mention.

I shall lay before the Department of State the full details of your case and request their consideration thereof. I do not feel, however, that I am warranted in holding out any great hope to you of immediate action, as I greatly fear your dastardly attempt on the lives of D. and P. will be apt to prejudice the mass of your fellow-countrymen against you. Absolute justice and protection against oppression will undoubtedly be accorded you, but you ought scarcely to expect clemency.

I will call about 4.30 p.m. this afternoon at the jail to see you if there be any matter whereof you specially desire the Department to be informed or wherein I can officially assist you.

I am, etc.,

Edw. Telfair Wetter
[Inclosure 6 in No. 88.]

Mr. Wetter’s protest to French commandant.

No. 214.]

Sir: I have the honor to call your attention to the fact that my letter, No. 212, of March 5, 1895, has up to date received no acknowledgment at your hands. It is true your Deputy Commandant Campion’s letter, No. 31, of March 5, was received just after the dispatching of my said communication, but as it did not reply to nor was it evidently intended as a reply to my said No. 212, no action was taken by this consulate in relation thereto over and beyond the nomination and temporary appointment of Mr. G. Girandeau, an attorney, to examine into Mr. Waller’s case, and to report to this consulate the status, etc., thereof, with the ultimate intention, if necessary, of his defending Mr. Waller, which intention was not carried out, for reasons not here necessary to mention, and was an entirely unofficial act on my part, and therefore was and is an absolutely immaterial matter in the past and present status of Mr. Waller’s case.

Permit me to add, however, that I have daily expected some notification in reply to my No. 212 from yourself or your subordinates as to the charge whereunder Mr. Waller was being or was about to be tried, the character of the evidence whereon said charge was based, and, lastly, the time and place of trial. I regret to say that officially none of these essential facts have ever been communicated to me. As far as I understand Commandant Campion’s letter of March 5, and that of M. Colonna, colonel superior, etc., of the same date and received about the same time, and unanswered-pending receipt of further information from yourself, or deputy, in reply to my said No. 212, it was merely the statement that Mr. Waller had been arrested and was to be tried for an infraction of article 111 of a printed military order dated January 18, 1895, but not received at this consulate until after the departure of the mail of January 28, 1895, by the mailing of letter or packet of letters on board the English steamship Umlazi on or about January 20, without the [Page 324] same having been first viséed by the military authorities. It is true that the letter of M. Colonna, colonel superior, etc., suggested the probability that a perusal of said letter of Mr. Waller’s might show cause for a more grave charge being made against him than the one whereunder he was arrested.

I would further state that under such circumstances this consulate felt scarcely warranted in interfering in the matter, it being nominally so petty a misdemeanor as to be punishable by a very petty fine only; feeling, furthermore, confident that an American—never mind what his color or status—would always meet with every leniency and with absolute justice at the hands of yourself and subordinates.

To my surprise, the arraignment of Mr. Waller was made on an entirely different ground and for an entirely different offense than the one nominally stated to this consulate in M. Campion’s and M. Colonna’s letters above referred to, and this without any official notice to this consulate of any kind whatsoever.

Furthermore, the trial was held and judgment given under the same circumstances of absolute official silence and noncommunication.

Without at present going into the question as to what tribunal under the law of nations has and had actual jurisdiction over Mr. Waller in this instance, I must add that the sentence imposed upon Mr. Waller seems to me so heavy, the circumstances above alluded to so unusual, and the question of jurisdiction so grave that I feel compelled to refer this case to the Secretary of State of the United States for the consideration of my Government; I would, therefore, request that you will kindly favor me with properly authenticated copies of the entire evidence, charge, proceedings, and judgment in the case for transmission to the United States.

Should it be possible to furnish me these documents prior to the departure of the next French mail steamer, your courtesy will be all the more augmented and appreciated.

In conclusion, permit me to state that I have indirectly heard that a revision of this judgment may be shortly held; if so, I would further request a copy of such revisions, etc, for like transmission to my Government.

And, finally, I would request information as to where the sentence found against Mr. Waller is to be carried into effect.

Thanking yon in advance for the expected courtesy of your earliest attention, I am, etc.,

Edward Telfair Wetter
[Inclosure 7 in No. 88—Translation.]

French commandant’s reply.

No. 85.]

Mr. Consul: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your letter, No. 214, of March 21, 1895, received to-day.

I regret not to agree with you on the subject of yours, No. 212, of March 5. Letter 31, of March 5, which Commandant Campion, who replaced me during my absence, wrote you, answered your question. Moreover, it results from the declaration of the Government commissary near the council of war that M. Girandeau, who had introduced himself as the barrister of J. Waller and had taken copies of the papers of the case, imparted to you the whole or part of those documents. I will not here qualify the irregularity of this proceeding, which is absolutely opposed to all the rules admitted by French justice, and of which, for the time being, M. Girandeau is alone to bear the responsibility. Lastly, your letter of March 20, which the military authority handed to J. Waller, proves that yon had daily kept yourself posted on the affair, although you never officially interfered in it. I am led to conclude that it was intentionally you kept aloof of the suit begun by the military authority. It is no business of mine to seek the reasons for your so doing. I have only to note that you have purposely done so from the beginning, and have knowingly allowed the Waller case to follow its regular course without even asking to be allowed to correspond with the accused man. As on all former occasions, you may rest assured that I should have held it a point of honor to confirm our friendly intercourse by enabling you to follow the Waller case. I should have done so the more willingly, as to the sincere regret that I experienced on finding an American citizen full of hatred for France was added the sentiment of an act of justice to be rendered by the French army to two American citizens, Messrs. Duder and Poupard, whose lives should have been greatly imperiled had the accusations, as cowardly as false, of J. Waller reached the Hova officers they were to have been imparted to.

Justice has had its course, and now escapes my action. Until the case is closed, i. e., three days after the execution of the judgment, I can not give you a copy of the papers relating to it. The appeal is public, like the trial by the council was. I will order that you be officially notified of the date and hour of the judging.

[Page 325]

As sequel to the Waller case, on report of the military authority and after acquainting myself with the writings seized, I have to-day, March 22, decreed the expulsion; of P. Bray, son-in-law of J. Waller, who is guilty of having infringed the regulation concerning letters and of having transmitted to the Hovas compromising documents. This decision will be carried out immediately by the Djeunah, of the Messageries Maritimes.

[Inclosure 8 in No. 88.]

Mr. Wetter to Captain Kiesel.

No. 216.]

Sir: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your letter No. 85, of March 22, about 6.30 p.m. of that date.

I regret to note, from the tenor of your letter, that you are under a misapprehension and that “M. le Commissaire du Gouvernement, pres le Conseil de Guerre” has materially contributed thereto. I will state that Mr. Girandeau, while acting as attorney for Mr. Waller (under the impression that I would personally guarantee his attorney’s fee), did make copies of the record in some preliminary hearing held in the Waller matter, the date of this hearing, the evidence, even the charge found against Mr. Waller are unknown to me, except by public rumor of the most fragmentary description. Mr. Girandeau did show me at my request a copy or what purported to be a copy of letters written by Mr. Waller, one to Tessier and one to Mrs. Waller, but as to any records, evidence, or other such documents, none such, nor any copies thereof, have I, or anyone representing me, seen; nor has any copy of the letters above mentioned been made by this consulate, or anyone else on my behalf.

That Mr. Girandeau, after examining the case, refused to defend Mr. Waller unless he were paid a fee of $150; that Mr. Waller’s friends refused to contribute anything toward the payment or security of said fee; that the other Americans in Tamatave also refused to so contribute, thus leaving the onus thereof, if paid, on my private and personal funds (a burden which I was not disposed to bear), is sufficiently well known not to need further comment; therefore I would suggest that the strictures contained in your letter are neither just to Mr. Girandeau nor toward myself.

I regret to note that you are not in accord with myself as to my letter No. 212, not having been replied to, nor as to the position this consulate has assumed in this Waller affair, and can only confirm my No. 214 of March 21.

In view of the fact that whatever my personal feelings were, or are, toward Mr. Waller, after the perusal of the letters first before mentioned, my duty as an official positively prohibits my permitting same to influence my official relations toward him. You will kindly permit me to pass over that portion of your letter referring directly to these letters in silence.

I shall take the liberty of expecting to receive, as soon as you can legally transmit them, the various copies asked for in my No. 214, and will notify my Government that they will go forward by next mail.

Meanwhile I would thank you for your courtesy in the matter of the appeal, as also for the order to the registrar of the court of appeals, whose notice, unfortunately, reached me so late in the day as to preclude my attendance thereat, owing to previous engagements until near the close of the case.

Your note as to the intended expulsion of Paul Bray, stepson (beau-fils) of J. Waller, was read with considerable surprise.

In view of the fact that I was informed by the adjutant of M. Colonna, in the Bussell case, that matters between consuls and M. Colonna must come through your hands, I have the honor to hand you herewith a letter for M. le Lieutenant-Colonel, commandant supérieur, etc., in reply to his letter on the subject of Bray’s expulsion and, inviting your attention thereto, would request a copy of the order of expulsion.

With assurances, etc.,

Edward Telfair Wetter
[Inclosure 9 in No. 88—Translation.]

Captain Kiesel to Mr. Wetter.

I have been officially notified that the judgment returned against J. Waller, an American subject, by the council of war sitting at Tamatave has been carried out. [Page 326] Referring to your letter No. 214, I have immediately requested an authentic copy of the judgment, and have the honor to inclose it herewith.

Will you accept, etc.,

G. N. Kiesel
[Inclosure 10 in No. 88—Translation.]

Judgment rendered by French military tribunal.

Marine first permanent council of war, sitting at Tamatave, French Republic.

In the name of the French people, the first permanent council of war has rendered the judgment, the terms of which follow:

This day, March 18, 1895.

The first permanent council of war composed in accordance with articles 3 and 10 of the maritime code of Messrs. Lacarriere, captain of the marine infantry, president; Bardaine, lieutenant of the marine infantry; Bouquez, lieutenant of the marine infantry; Nicaise, adjutant of the marine infantry, judges; all appointed by the lieutenant-colonel, superior commander of the troops and place of Tamatave in state of seige. Mr. Maroix, sublieutenant, deputy government commissary; Mr. Marengar, sergeant-major, recorder of the said council, who are, none of them, in the state of incompatibility foreseen by articles 22, 23, and 24 of the above-mentioned code.

The council assembled by order of the lieutenant-colonel superior commander of the troops and place of Tamatave in state of siege in conformity with article 141 of the code of maritime justice, met, in the ordinary place of its sessions, in public audience, to judge John Waller, born January 12, 1850, at New Madrid, in the province of Missouri, United States of America, a journalist residing at present at Tamatave, aged 45.

Accused of first, violating the prescriptions contained in article 3 of the decree of January 18, 1895, of the delegate of the chief of the naval squadron, an infraction foreseen by article 471, paragraph 15, of the penal code applicable in virtue of article 364 of the code of military laws for the navy; second, of corresponding with the enemy, a crime foreseen and punished by articles 2 and 78 of the ordinary penal code, aimed at by article 304 of the code of military laws for the navy (army of the sea).

The session being opened, the president had a copy of military laws for the armies of land and sea, one of the code of criminal information, and another of the penal code brought and placed on the desk in front of him, and ordered the accused man, who appeared free and with no fetters, to be introduced, together with his counsel.

Examined through the medium of Mr. Paul Dupousel, aged 38, a merchant, residing Avenue 1, Tamatave, sworn in the manner prescribed by law, on his name, Christian name, place of birth, profession, and place of residence, he answered that he was named John Waller, was born on January 12, 1850, at New Madrid, in the province of Missouri, United States of America, that he was a journalist, and resided for the present at Tamatave.

The president, after having had the order convoking the council, the report prescribed by article 138 of the code of maritime laws, and those documents the hearing of which he considered necessary read by the recorder, told the accused man the facts for which he was prosecuted and cautioned him and his counsel as directed to do in article 151 of the above code.

After which he examined the accused, heard the witnesses publicly and singly, the said witnesses having previously sworn to speak, without any hatred or fear, the truth and nothing but the truth. One of them, Paul Bray, was heard through the medium of Mr. Paul Dupousel, sworn interpreter. The president also fulfilled toward them the formalities prescribed by articles 317 and 319 of the criminal code.

Mr. Molyneux was then heard for the sake of information, without being sworn, in virtue of the discretionary power possessed by the president.

Through the medium of Mr. Dupousel, sworn interpreter, the prosecution proofs having again been presented to the culprit, who recognized them.

Mr. Commissary of the Government held out that John L. Waller, journalist, residing at Tamatave, be found guilty, first, of infringing the prescriptions of article 3 of the decree of January 18, 1895, issued by the delegate of the chief of the naval squadron; second, of attempting to correspond with subjects of a hostile nation, an attempt the end of which was to furnish the enemy with instructions prejudicial to the military and political situation of France; and that the council decree the confiscation to the profit of the State of all documents which had served in the perpetration of the crime, in conformity with article 11 of the penal code, aimed at by article 74 of the code of maritime laws.

The accused and his counsel, who were the last to speak, haying declared that [Page 327] they had nothing to add to their defense, the president then pronounced the debate closed and ordered the accused and his counsel to retire.

The tribunal withdrew to the chamber of deliberation.

The council deliberated privately, and the president, in conformity with article 162 of the maritime code, set to them the following questions:

Is the accused man guilty of having infringed article 3 of the decree issued January 18, 1895, by the delegate of the chief of the naval squadron?
Is he guilty of having carried on with the enemy a correspondence injurious to the military and political situation of France?
Was the act committed under aggravating circumstances?
Was the act committed under attenuating circumstances?

The votes were then collected, in conformity with articles 161 and 163 of the code of military laws, beginning with the lowest grade upward, the president being the last to remit his opinion, and the council returned.

To the first question: The verdict of “Yes; the accused is guilty, unanimously.”

To the second question: The verdict of “Yes; the accused is guilty, unanimously.”

To the third question: The verdict of “Yes; the accused is guilty, by a majority of three voices.”

To the fourth question: “No; unanimously.”

On which, and seeing the demands of the Government commissary in his requisitions, the president read the text of the law, and again, in the manner prescribed by articles 161 and 164 of the code of maritime laws, collected the votes for the appliance of the penalty. The council sat publicly again and the president read the foregoing motives and enacting clause.

The council in consequence condemned, by a majority of three, John Waller to twenty years’ detention, conformably with the hereinafter-mentioned Articles of law, and decreed the confiscation to the profit of the State, as proofs at conviction, of all papers produced during the course of the suit.

Penal code.

Art. 11. Expelling under the special superintendence of the high police, fines, and confiscation either of the instruments of the crime when they belong to the culprit or of the things produced by the crime, whether they were used or only designed to perpetrate it, are penalties commonly inflicted in criminal and correctional suits.

Art. 2. Every attempt at a crime evinced by a beginning of execution, if not delayed or if not succeeding through circumstances independent from the will of its perpetrator only, is considered as the crime itself.

Art. 78. If a correspondence with subjects of a hostile nation, not having for object one of the crimes stipulated in the preceding article, nevertheless furnished the enemy informations injurious to the military or political situation of France or her allies, those holding it will be punished by detention without any prejudice to a higher penalty in the case where those informations should afterwards be found to be the result of an arrangement constituting an act of espionage.

Art. 47 (paragraph 15). Those contravening to regulations lawfully enacted by the administrative authority and those not conforming with regulations or decrees issued by the municipal authority will be, in virtue of articles 3 and 4, title page 11, of the law of August 16 and 24, 1790, and of article 46, title page 1, of the law of July 19 and 22, 1791, punished with a fine of from 1 to 5 francs.

Code of military laws for the army of sea.

Art. 74. Tribunals of the navy (only statute on public suits at law): They can nevertheless order the restitution to their owners of the things seized or of the proofs at conviction when there is no need for their confiscation.

Art. 104. All accused persons, without distinction, are summoned before councils of war or of justice, first, when they are all sailors or soldiers of the army of sea or assimilated to sailors and soldiers, even when one or several of them are not, in reason of their position at the time of the crime or delinquency, amenable to those tribunals; second, when the crime or delinquency is committed by persons amenable to the councils of war or of justice and by foreigners, whether on French territory or on a foreign territory occupied by French troops; third, when the crime or delinquency is committed in a foreign country in the district about an expeditionary force.

Art. 384. Naval tribunals apply to all the crimes and delinquencies not foreseen by the present code the penalties ascribed to them in the ordinary penal laws, and in cases where the law permits the admission of attenuating circumstances article 463 of the penal code may be applied.

Decree of the delegate of the chief of the naval squadron.

Art. 3. The lieutenant of the port is given the superintendence over mails at their arrivals and departures. No mails can be distributed except by the post-office, and [Page 328] all cables must be sent through it. No mails can be dispatched except through the post-office. Exceptions to this rule must each time be specially obtained from the delegate of the chief of the naval squadron or, in his absence, from the municipal administrator.

Article 135 of the military laws: In cases of conviction of several crimes only the highest penalty is applied.

Penal code, article 20: Whoever is condemned to detention will be kept in one of the forts situated on the continental territory of the Republic named in a decree issued in the form of the regulations of the public administration. Detention can not be passed for less than five nor for more than twenty years, except in the cases mentioned in article 33.

Code of military laws for the army of sea, article 169: The judgment passing a penalty on an accused person also condemns him to the costs toward the State. It ordains, in cases foreseen by the law, confiscation of the objects seized and restitution to the profit of the State or of their owners of all things seized and produced during the course of the suit as evidence. Enjoins the Government commissary to have the present judgment read immediately to the prisoner in his presence and that of the watch under arms, and to inform him that the law gives him twenty-four hours to appeal.

Done, closed, and judged, without leaving, in public session held at Tamatave the day, month, and year hereafter, and the members of the council and the registrar signed the minute of the present judgment.







On the 8th day of March, 1895, the foregoing judgment was read by us, the undersigned clerk and registrar, to the prisoner, who was besides informed by the Government commissary, in presence of the watch assembled under arms, that articles 171 and 173 of the code of maritime laws gave him twenty-four hours after the expiration of the present day to appeal.

The Government commissary:


The registrar:


In consequence the President of the Republic commands and orders all bailiffs to execute this judgment, all attorneys-general and attorneys of the Republic near tribunals of first suits to see to it being enforced, and all commanders and officers of the public staff to lend their assistance when lawfully requested to do so.

The appeal having been rejected on March 23, the above judgment was executed on March 24, 1895.

The costs amounted to the sum of 12 francs and 50 centimes.

The registrar:


Judicial antecedents, nil.


The Government commissary:


Certified to be a true copy.

The registrar:


Seen and forwarded to Mr. United States Consul.

The captain, delegate of the chief of the naval squadron:

G. N. Kiesel.

I certify the above and foregoing 18 pages to contain an accurate copy of the judgment on file in this consulate, and received on the evening of March 24, 1895, from Commandant Kiesel; also to contain a fairly trustworthy translation of same into English.

Edw. Telfair Wetter
[Page 329]
[Inclosure 11 in No. 88.]

Mr. Wetter to Captain Kiesel.

No. 223.]

Mr. Commandant: I would call your attention to the fact that, notwithstanding your promise, implied in paragraph 2 of your letter No. 85, of March 22, 1895, I hare so far received none of the official copies of evidence, charge, and proceedings requested in my letter No. 214, of March 21, in the Waller trial, excepting the copy of the judgment of court, received in your letter of March 24.

Permit me to tender you my thanks for said copy of judgment and to say that same would have been tendered you ere this but for the constant expectation I have been under of receiving your promised remittance of the other documents in the case.

I would especially ask for certified copies of the various letters used in Mr. Waller’s prosecution.

Regretting the necessity I am under of again troubling you in this matter, I would ask you, Mr. Commandant, to accept the assurances of my distinguished consideration, etc.,

Edw. Telfair Wetter
[Inclosure 12 in No. 88—Translation.]

Commandant Campion to Mr. Wetter.

No. 43.]

[Division Navale de l’Océan Indien, Le capitaine de Frégate Campion, Commandant le croiseur le Dupetit, Thouars de ‘leque’ du Chef de Division, a Monsieur le Consul des Étaos-Unis.]

The chief of the naval squadron having appointed me in the absence of Commander Kiesel to be until further orders his delegate on the east coast of Madagascar, I have the honor to acknowledge receipt of your two letters, Nos. 222 and 223, both dated on the 16th of April instant.

In your letter No. 222 you ask me to send you Mr. President Dubreuil’s receipts of your cheque for 4,188.35 francs on the Comptovi d’Escompte. Those receipts, signed by Mr. Marmier, the registrar of the court, and legalized by Mr. President Dubreuil, were handed to Mr. Girandeau in person, your proxy in the case.

In your letter No. 223 you acknowledge receipt of a copy of the judgment rendered in the Waller case and ask for a certified copy of the depositions, accusation, and procedure in same. I have the honor to inform you that the complete records of that suit having been dispatched to France, it is impossible for me to satisfy your request.

In consequence, Mr. Consul, I have the honor to inform you that I consider that these two letters have received a definite answer.

Will you accept, etc.,