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UNITED STATES V. DAUGHERTY, 269 U. S. 360 (1926)

U.S. Supreme Court

United States v. Daugherty, 269 U.S. 360 (1926)

United States v. Daugherty

No. 303

Argued December 1, 1925

Decided January 4, 1926

269 U.S. 360


1. Semble that, in view of later decisions on cognate questions, the constitutionality of the Anti-Narcotic Act, sustained by a divided court in United States v. Doremus, 249 U. S. 86, is open to question. P. 269 U. S. 362.

2. Assuming the validity of the Anti-Narcotic Act, which was not questioned in this case, an indictment charging in three counts the making of three completed unauthorized sales of cocaine to three different named persons on three different specified days alleges three separate offenses. P. 269 U. S. 363.

3. A sentence, under three counts of an indictment alleging three separate offenses, which adjudged the defendant guilty of "the crime aforesaid" and that he be confined in a penitentiary "for the term of five years on each of said three counts" and until he shall have been discharged by due course of law; "said term of imprisonment to run consecutively and not concurrently," is to be construed as imposing total imprisonment of fifteen years, made up of three five-year terms, one under each count, to be served consecutively in the same sequence as the counts appeared in the indictment. P. 269 U. S. 363.

4. Sentences in criminal cases should reveal with fair certainty the intent of the court and exclude any serious misapprehensions by those who must execute them. Id.

C.C.A. 2 F.2d 691, reversed; Dist.Ct. affirmed.

Certiorari to a judgment of the circuit court of appeals which affirmed, but, by interpretation, reduced the scope of, a sentence imposed by the district court in a prosecution for violations of the Anti-Narcotic Act.

Page 269 U. S. 361

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