Protection of Robert Beck, a Swiss citizen, by United States officials in Colombia.a
Washington, May 29, 1902.
Mr. Robert Beck, a native of Switzerland, is established since 1892 as a representative of English and German exporting firms at Bogotá, [Page 980]Colombia, and has, by registration, placed himself under the protection of the United States representative in that country.
In consequence of the depreciation of the paper money, he was forced to invest a large amount of it in coffee. For the purpose of shipping it, he bought a large number of mules.
These mules are now being taken away from-him illegally by agents of the Government; they neither pay any consideration nor give any receipt for them. The finest specimens of them remain in the hands of the Colombian officers, who sell them for good prices.
Mr. Robert Beck has done all he could in order to obtain justice. Everything is useless. He has lost so far over 100 animals, and even some of the coffee (about $800 worth) has been destroyed by the revolutionary forces.
He has addressed himself to the United States representative, Mr. Hart, but without avail. He therefore requests the Swiss legation in the United States to take the proper steps at the State Department in Washington to have these illegal proceedings stopped and force the wrongdoers to pay him a due compensation for his severe loss.