Ambassador Thompson to the Secretary of State.

No. 338.]

Sir: Referring to the matter of the American fishing vessel Aloha, captured by the Mexican federal authorities and now anchored in the harbor of Vera Cruz, awaiting such action on the part of her owners as Mexican law requires before she can be returned to them, I confirm my telegram of yesterday’s date reading as follows:

Mexico, December 3, 1906.

Sec. State, Washington, D. C.

Referring fishing schooner Aloha, please advise owners that Vera Cruz district court will surrender same to person properly authorized to appear before said court and pray for delivery.

D. E. Thompson.

The above was sent by me by reason of private information received from Minister Mariscal, as per copies and translations inclosed, from which the department will see that the district court of Vera Cruz is ready to make the return of the vessel to her owners; but the latter must send some properly authorized person to appear before said court and pray for the delivery of the vessel, in accordance with the practices provided for such cases by the laws of Mexico. Therefore, the person authorized by the owners must hold a power of attorney, with the right to delegate the same to some Mexican attorney at Vera Cruz, in order that the latter may prepare the petition addressed to the court asking for the delivery of the vessel. The owners, of course, need no recommendation from our part that they must send a sufficient crew to man the vessel out of the harbor.

I also beg to call the department’s attention to the letter from the attorney-general to Mr. Mariscal, in which he states that certain dispositions relative to the appraisement of the other three vessels, that is, those which were captured last April off the coast of Campeche, were returned to the district court of Yucatan. These vessels were brought some time ago from Progreso to the harbor of Vera Cruz for safekeeping, this being, no doubt, the reason why the above depositions were sent to the district court of Vera Cruz. At the same time, this seems to be an indication that the Yucatan court may be getting ready to release the vessels under bond, as I do not see that the appraisement of the vessels could have any other purpose.

I have, etc.,

D. E. Thompson.
[Page 1104]
[Inclosure 1.—Translation.]

The Minister for Foreign Affairs to Ambassador Thompson.

My Dear Mr. Ambassador: Referring to our conversation last held upon the American fishing vessels, I have the pleasure to inclose copy of a letter I have received from the attorney-general of the Republic, and I take the liberty to call your attention to it.

Believe me, as ever, your affectionate and sincere servant,

Igno Mariscal.

The Attorney-General of Mexico to the Minister for Foreign Affairs.

My Distinguished and Good Friend: By my communication of the 27th instant I officially replied to yours of the 24th, with which you were pleased to accompany a note from the ambassador of the United States relative to the matter of the American vessels.

Privately, and understanding the spirit which guides the action of that department in the case in question, I have addressed Licentiate Pascual Evia, federal district attorney for Yucatan, the letter, copy of which I inclose, and which I trust will give good results toward attaining the end sought.

I received on this date a telegram from the federal district attorney for Veracruz advising me that certain dispositions relative to the appraisement of the vessels had already been returned to the district court of Yucatan, and that the surrender of the schooner Aloha has not been made to her owner because the latter has not appeared before the district court of Veracruz to pray for her delivery, and therefore there is no one with whom the matter can be taken up.

I also beg to advise that said telegram will be officially sent to you, and privately I take the liberty to suggest that it would be advisable for you to indicate to the ambassador, to whom the parties in interest have referred the case, that the only formality from which the surrender of the Aloha depends is such expedient action as said parties should bring before the district court of Veracruz to obtain their vessel.

Without anything further in the premises, I remain, as ever, your obedient servant and friend,

Rafael Rebollar.