611.51244/47: Telegram

The Ambassador in France ( Bullitt ) to the Secretary of State

1188. Department’s telegram No. 482, November 28, 1 p.m.83 In connection with the conclusion of the agreement for the suppression of customs frauds the Foreign Office has on two occasions asked the Embassy whether the restriction against the public use of certain information furnished in the past by our Customs Bureau would be removed: see telegrams of July 27 and November 25 from the Treasury Attaché to the Customs Bureau, file number 91271. Both these requests were refused on the ground that the Department of Commerce would not authorize such use being made of the information. See letter dated August 20, 1936, from Customs Bureau to Treasury Attaché and also telegram dated December 1.

The French Government has now orally inquired if after the coming into force of the agreement for the suppression of frauds it makes a formal request for the removal of the restriction against the use of this information, this will be granted.

In view of the fact that the exchange of letters concluding this agreement will shortly be signed, and since the Treasury Attaché sees no reason why the French Government should not be allowed to use this information in court, I strongly recommend, unless there is some compelling reason for the contrary, that the necessary steps be taken to the end that this permission be granted at once prior to the coming into force of the agreement as I believe such action would have a good effect here.

  1. Not printed.