393.1111 Stam, John C./51: Telegram

The Chargé in China (Gauss) to the Secretary of State

69. Reference Legation’s 65, February 6, 7 p.m. concerning Stam case. Peck reports February 8, noon, that following a request made [Page 672] under instructions of the Legation for an interview with the Acting Minister of Foreign Affairs to discuss this case, he has now received and is forwarding to the Legation a copy of note from the Foreign Office dated February 7th with voluminous enclosures reporting progress in the case. Peck has translated one section only of the note as follows:

“With regard to the punishment of the murderers, telegrams have been received from the National Military Affairs Commission and the Anhwei Provincial Government stating as follows: ‘On December 14, a brigade under Wang Yao Wu pursued the bandits to Tang Chia Chiao and fought a severe battle during that entire day. More than 400 bandits were killed, and over 100 were taken captive. The captured bandits were severely questioned, one by one. Among them, four bandits named Na Nai Feng, Chiang Ping Fu, Chu Mao Tou, Hung San Yuan, confessed frankly that they had taken part in the murder of an American citizen and his wife at Miaoshou. These bandits were sent to Tunki where they were tried by the court martial of the field headquarters of the Chairman of Anhwei provincial Government and were definitely found to be the murderers in the case in question. They were sentenced to death, and were executed on the spot on December 22, 1934, in order to manifest the rigor of the law.’ The murderers in this case, therefore, have been punished according to law with the extreme penalty.”

The note and enclosure will be translated as soon as possible after receipt at the Legation and report will be made to the Department by radio.

Meantime I venture the comment that it is amazing that if 400 of these communist bandits were killed, 100 taken prisoners and 4 identified and punished by death on December 22nd as the murderers of the Stams there has so far been no public announcement of the fact by the Chinese Government.

Peck is being instructed by radio that he need not press his request for an interview with the Acting Minister for Foreign Affairs until the Legation has received and examined the Foreign Office note and instructs him further by mail, meanwhile he should observe and report promptly if any information is released to the press by the Government of the apprehension and punishment of the Stam murderers.