The Ambassador in Mexico ( Daniels ) to the Secretary of State

No. 8675

Sir: I have the honor to refer to my despatch No. 8561 of May 20, 1939,43 and previous despatches with regard to the matter of taking inventories of the properties of the petroleum companies.

In the despatch under reference it was pointed out that the taking of inventories had apparently been dropped. Somewhat previous to this time, on February 20, 1939, to be exact, attorneys for affiliates of the Standard of New Jersey which had not been named in the expropriation decree entered an amparo suit against the action of the Government: the grounds for the complaint that the Government had proceeded with taking the inventories and evaluating the properties of these non-expropriated, although seized, companies.

On June 13, 1939, a decision was rendered by the Second Section of the Supreme Court dismissing amparo proceedings. Copies of the decision of the Supreme Court, as well as translations thereof,43 are transmitted herewith.

In commenting on the decision, the representatives of the Standard Oil affiliates stated the following: (this is confidential)

Your attention is particularly invited to portion of the decision appearing at the bottom of page 3 and the top of page 4 of the enclosures, in which it is stated that the companies have a defense by availing themselves of the petition for administrative revocation contained in article 5 of the Expropriation Law.44 This portion of the decision is along the lines of the decisions in the Franco Española and Terrenos del Golfo cases; which have previously been commented upon.

Copy of the enclosure is going forward to New Haven.

With reference to the Franco Española and Terrenos del Golfo cases,45 see the Embassy’s despatches Nos. 8477 of April 29, 1939, and 8436 of April 24, 193946

Respectfully yours,

Josephus Daniels
  1. Not printed.
  2. Not printed.
  3. Approved November 23, 1936, Diario Oficial, November 25, 1936.
  4. Amparo actions brought by the Cía. Petrolera Franco Española, an affiliate of the American Continental Oil Company, and the Cía. de Terrenos del Golfo, a member of the Dutch Shell group, were dismissed by decisions of the second section of the Supreme Court of April 4 and 18, 1939, respectively, on the ground that the companies had not had full recourse to administrative appeals. Texts and translations of the decisions were transmitted to the Department with despatches Nos. 8434, April 24, and 8471, April 28 from the Chargé in Mexico. (812.6363/5716, 5739).
  5. Neither printed.