The Rumanian Minister (Davila) to the Secretary of State

No. 3376/P–31

Sir: I have the honor to bring to your attention the following:

On September 30th, three days after my return from Europe, I motored in my car (bearing diplomatic license No. 355) to Newport, R. I., having with me my chauffeur, Albert Amiaud. Not needing him in Newport, I instructed him to drive the car back to New York.

At about 9 o’clock that evening, between Providence and Westerly, R. I. on Route 3, Amiaud was stopped by Rhode Island State Trooper No. 47, who charged him with excessive speed and took him to Hopes Valley Barracks. Amiaud admitted the charge that he drove between 50 and 55 miles an hour on a highway where the speed limit was 40 miles, but he adduced the attenuating circumstance that at that time traffic was unusually light and that, in view of the advanced hour, he was anxious to reach New York as soon as possible.

The Lieutenant of the Post thereupon asked him for his driving permit and on finding that it had expired on August 10th, he detained him at the Barracks for three hours, although Amiaud had told him that he was unable to renew his license inasmuch as he had just returned with me from Europe, where he had been for three months, and that he had not yet come to Washington, but that instead he had his international driving permit which he showed to him. Notwithstanding, the Lieutenant took him that night to Westerly before the Third District Court of Rhode Island, where Judge Flynn imposed on him a fine of $25.00 plus $1.00 court costs, although the magistrate appeared to have entertained some doubts as to whether he had jurisdiction over him. In addition, he was enjoined to employ some one to drive the car to New York, as he was not in the possession of a driving permit. Therefore, he was obliged to engage a Mr. Steward, manager of the American Automobile Association Branch in Westerly to whom he paid $17.00 as remuneration for his services.

I have reprimanded Amiaud for having disobeyed the speed regulations of the State of Rhode Island, but at the same time, I feel that the treatment to which he was subjected was unwarranted.

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In view of the above facts, I beg you, Sir, to be good enough to intervene with the appropriate authorities of Rhode Island to refund the fine and fee imposed on Amiaud,—for which Judge Flynn issued the enclosed receipt,—as well as reimburse me for the sum of $17.00 which was paid to Mr. Steward.

Accept [etc.]

Charles A. Davila