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DOYLE v. LONDON GUARANTEE AND ACCIDENT COMPANY

February 25, 1907

DOYLE
v.
LONDON GUARANTEE AND ACCIDENT COMPANY, LIMITED



CERTIFICATE FROM THE CIRCUIT COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE THIRD CIRCUIT

Fuller, Harlan, Brewer, White, Peckham, McKenna, Holmes, Day, Moody

Author: Day

[ 204 U.S. Page 601]

 MR. JUSTICE DAY delivered the opinion of the court.

This case is here upon certificate from the Circuit Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. From the facts stated it appears that William J. Doyle and James G. Doak were adjudged guilty of contempt of court in the Circuit Court of the United States for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. After the bringing of the action, upon the petition of the London Guarantee and Accident Company, Limited, the plaintiff below, the court made the following order:

"And now, June 25th, 1904, the court orders the defendants to produce, within twenty days, in the office of the clerk of said court, their pay sheets, time books, cash books and all other books of original entry which contain information as to the amount of compensation paid to employees of themselves or of their subcontractors or of any other persons contemplated in the contracts upon which suit is brought in this case during the period of said contracts as set forth in the petition filed."

After that order was made the certificate recites:

"Thereafter the plaintiff presented to the court a petition

[ 204 U.S. Page 602]

     alleging disobedience by the defendants of the above order and praying that an attachment issue against them for contempt of court. Thereupon the court granted a rule upon the defendants to show cause why an attachment should not issue against them for contempt of court by reason of their violation and disobedience of said order. To this rule the defendants filed an answer under oath, denying intentional non-compliance with said order and stating that they were not able to produce all the books and papers called for, because upon a thorough search the absent ones could not be found and averring their belief that they were accidentally lost or by mistake were destroyed at a time when alterations were made in their office and a removal of its contents to another place occurred. Subsequently, to wit, on January 3d, 1905, upon the hearing of the rule, the court gave and entered judgment that the 'defendants are guilty of contempt in disobeying the order referred to,' and further adjudged as follows:

"If the defendants produce in the office of the clerk of the Circuit Court on or before January 15th, 1905, the ledger of 1902-4, the pay rolls or time sheets from March to May 28, 1903, and the cash book from May 28 to December 1, 1902, or if they produce the cash book alone, they are ordered to pay no more than the costs accruing upon this motion, including the stenographer's charges, on or before January 20, or in default of such payment to suffer imprisonment in the jail of this county for the period of sixty days. If the foregoing books and papers are not produced on or before January 15, the defendants are ordered to pay a fine of two hundred and fifty dollars, and also the cost accruing upon this motion, including the stenographer's charges, on or before January 20, or in default of such payment to suffer imprisonment in the jail of this county for the period of sixty days."

A writ of error was allowed to the Circuit Court of Appeals. Upon the facts stated the following question was certified to this court:

[ 204 U.S. Page 603]

     "Has the Circuit Court of Appeals jurisdiction upon the writ of error sued out by the defendants to review the above recited judgment of January 5th, 1905, adjudging that the defendants are guilty of contempt of court in disobeying the above recited order of court of June 25th, 1904, and ...


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