The Attorney General (Cummings) to the Acting Secretary of State

Dear Mr. Secretary: This will acknowledge the receipt of the several communications from your Department (342.1121) referring to the case of George Giller, alias John O’Brien, an American citizen now imprisoned in the penitentiary at Kingston, Ontario.

The letters from you dated October 27, 1933, and October 31, 1933,53 contain full descriptions of the issues presented in the case and also bear on the causes of certain disturbances in the prison where O’Brien is confined, which have been aired in the Canadian courts. The letter of [Page 92] November 7, 1933, forwards the report of the American Consul at Toronto stating that this prisoner is now receiving fair treatment for a man of his type. The letter of November 11, 1933, sets forth the conclusion of the Consul that O’Brien is not now being discriminated against. The letter of November 21, 1933, expresses the opinion that no further representation is necessary from the American Government to the Canadian authorities.

These reports and letters have all been read with interest by the Director of the Bureau of Prisons and it is his opinion that there now is a clear distinction, as expressed in these letters, between solitary confinement as punitive discipline and isolation or segregation of a prisoner for the protection of himself, other prisoners and the administration of the prison.

It is apparent that this incident has been amicably and properly adjusted and that there is no further occasion for the recommendation of any further action by your Department.

Yours very truly,

Homer Cummings
  1. Neither printed.