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stitutional guardians of the interests of the public in all matters relating to prize.
But cognizance of captures made on land, by land forces only, is not taken in admiralty by virtue of any inherent powers.
Whenever it exercises such a jurisdiction, it is by virtue of special powers derived aliunde.
Although the prize jurisdiction, after it has once attached to the subject matter, may be lost, by a recapture, escape or voluntary discharge;" yet it is well settled that the jurisdiction cannot be affected by any change in the local situation of the property after capture, but wherever that property may be found, or the proceeds of the property, the court will follow it with its process. Therefore, if the property be carried to a foreign port, and delivered upon bail by the captors, the jurisdiction of the prize court is not thereby ousted, but will be exercised by adjudication and enforcement of the stipulation. So too, where a prize is lost at sea, the court has power to proceed to adjudication, either at the instance of the captors or claimants.” The like power exists, although the captured property may be lying in a foreign neutral territory, and even though it be sold or has passed into other hands, the court may proceed to adjudication; hut it is always, in such cases, in the discretion of the court to determine if they will exercise their jurisdiction at the instance and in favor of the captors, and this they will not do, if there has been an illegal or unjustifiable conversion—but only where it has resulted from necessity or reasonable and just cause.
| Anthon vs. Fisher, Doug., 649, n. ; Maissonniaire vs. Keating, 2 Gall., 325.
? The Two Friends, 1 Rob., 271, 284; The Emulous, 1 Gall., 563.
* Hudson vs. Guestier, 4 Cranch, 293.
* Home vs. Camden, 2 H. Bl., 533; 4 T. R. 383; Willis vs. Commissioners of Prize, 5 East., 22; The Noysomhed, 7 Ves., 593; The Brig Louis, 5 Rob., 146; The Two Friends, 1 Rob., 271; The Eliza, 1 Acton, 336; Smart vs. Wolf, 3 T. R., 223; The Pomona, 1 Dod., 25.
• The Peacock, 4 Rob., 195.
Jurisdiction of the subject matter having been once acquired by a prize court, its authority is plenary over all the incidents necessary to its effic ient exercise. It will therefore follow prize proceeds into the hands of agents, or others, who by any title hold them for the captors, and will enforce payment, with interest, in proper cases, by decree.
And although such persons have given no stipulation, or an insufficient stipulation, on receiving prize proceeds, it will enforce a decree of
payment, for it may always proceed in rem, and is not limited by the stipulation. In such cases the court may proceed, and without the application of parties, cr officio, as guardian of the public interests.
| Hudson vs. Guestier, 4 Cranch, 293The Christophe, 2 Rob., 209; The Henrick and Maria, 4 Rob., 43; The Comet, 5 Rob.. 285; The Victoria, Edwards, 97.
? The Falcon, 6 Rob., 194; The Pomona, 1 Dod., 25; L'Eole, 6 Rob., 220; Ladame Cecile, 6 Rob., 257; The Arabella and Maderia, 2 Gall., 368; Code des prises, Guchard I., p. 118.
3 Smart vs. Wolf, 3 T. R., 313; Home vs. Camden, 2 H. Bl., 533; Jennings vs. Carson, 4 Cranch, 1; The Two Friends, 1 Rob., 273; Willis vs. Commissioners of Prize, 5 East., 22; The Noysomhed, 7 Ves., 593; The Princessa, 2 Rob., 31; The Louis, 6 Rob., 146.
The Pomona, i Dod., 25; The Herkimer, Stewart, 128, 2 Hall Am. Law Jour., 133.
Even after final sentence is pronounced, the power of the court does not cease to issue process for the enforcement of all rights, so long as any thing remains to be done touching the subject matter.
Exclusive jurisdiction is also vested in prize courts, to determine all questions between captors and joint-captors, as to their rights to the proceeds of prize, and such determination is conclusive between the parties.
So also as to all questions of freight, damages, , expenses, and costs in cases of capture. »
Though a mere maritime tort, unconnected with capture, may be cognizable in courts of common law, yet it is well established that all torts connected with captures, jure belli are within the exclusive jurisdiction of prize courts.
In the exercise of this jurisdiction, prize courts will not only decree restitution and damages in cases of illegal capture, but as an incident to the possession of the principal cause will allow damages for personal torts, and that not only against the wrong-doer, but against the owners of the privateer offending, upon the application of the
· Home vs. Camden, 2 H. Bl., 533, and cases ubi supra.
? Le Caux vs. Eden, Doug., 594 ; Lindo vs. Rodney, Doug., 613 ; Smart vs. Wolf, 3 T. R., 223; The Copenhagen, 1 Rob., 289 ; The St. Juan Baptista, 5 Rob., 33 ; The Die Frie Damer, 5 Rob., 357; The Betsy, 1 Rob., 93; Jennings vs. Carson, 4 Cranch, 2; Bingham vs. Cabot, 3 Dall., 19; The United States vs. Peters, 3 Dall., 121; Talbot vs. Johnson, 3 Dall., 133; 2 Brown Civ. and Adm. Law, 209.
rule of respondeat superior , and a liberal indemnity will be awarded in cases where it is shown that the captured crew have been subjected to gross ill. treatment.
The jurisdiction of prize courts is unquestionable to decree confiscation as a penalty for falsity, fraud or misconduct, as well of citizens as of neutrals. And it is a part of the ancient law of the admiralty, independent of any statute, that captors may forfeit their rights of prize by their own misconduct; and therefore such decree of forfeiture may be declared against them (in which case the property goes to the government), where they have been guilty of gross irregularity, or criminal neg. lect, or wanton impropriety and fraud. So too, where they have, without necessity, disposed of the prize property, before condemnation; where they have rescued the property from the custody of the marshall, commissioner of prize, or other custodian of the court; and also where they have violated the instructions of the government relative to bringing in the prize crew, and generally in all cases of deviation by the captors from the established and regular course of proceedings, the prize court requires satisfactory explanation of such deviation, before it will exercise its jurisdiction beneficially to the captors.
The foregoing general outline of the prize juris
' Del Col. vs. Arnold, 3 Dall., 333; The Anna Maria, 2 Wheat., 327; Bynkershoek, Qu. Jur. Pub. Lib., I., ch. xix; Du Ponceau's Trans., 147; The St. Juan Baptista, 5 Rob., 33; The Die Frie Damer, 5 Rob., 357; The Lively, 1 Gall., 315.
? 8 Cranch, 421; The George, 2 Wheat., 278; La Reine des Anges, Stewart, 9; The Cossack, Stewart, 513.
diction of admiralty will serve to elucidate the rules of practice and proceedings adopted by prize courts in its due administration.
And first in order for consideration, are those Rules as to rules which relate to the duties of captor's, after captors upon they have secured possession of their prize. The session of rules applicable to the evidence upon the question prize. wh-ther the prize is or not a lawful prize, will be more appropriately considered hereafter, on a review of the proceedings in court.
After a maritime capture is complete, the posses. Duty of capsion of the captors is, in law, regarded as a bona fide cise proper possession, and they are not responsible for any loss care cin tithe
custody of or injuries resulting from mere accident or casualty, prize. but are only bound for fair and safe custody, and are liable for any loss occasioned by their neglect or want of
proper care. This responsibility attaches to loss resulting from misconduct of any of the agents employed by the captors, as the prize-master or prize crew-neglect in not employing a pilot. In cases of gross misconduct on the part of private captors, the court will decree a revocation of their commission,
But it is a rule of prize courts, that application Liable for for remedial process against captors for misconduct misconduct. or negligence must be made without any unreason- . able delay. If the injured parties lie by for such
The Betsy, 1 Rob., 93; The Catherine and Anne, 4 Rob., 39; The Caroline, 4 Rob. 256; Del Col. vs. Arnold, 3 Dall., 333; The Dehr Mohr, 3 Rob., 229; The Speculation, 2 Rob., 293; The William, 6 Rob., 316; Wilcocks vs. Union Ins. Co., 2 Binney, 574.
· The Mariunne, 5 Rob., 9.