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UNITED STATES V. SAMPSON, 371 U. S. 75 (1962)

U.S. Supreme Court

United States v. Sampson, 371 U.S. 75 (1962)

United States v. Sampson

No. 69

Argued October 18, 1962

Decided November 19, 1962

371 U.S. 75


Appellees were indicted in a Federal District Court for using the mails to defraud and conspiring to do so, in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 1341 and 371. The indictment alleged that, after appellees' salesmen had fraudulently represented that appellees would help businessmen to obtain loans or sell their businesses and had obtained applications for such services and advance payments therefor, appellees mailed acceptances of such applications to the victims in order to lull them into believing that the services would be performed. The District Court dismissed the indictment on the ground that, since the money had already been obtained before the acceptances were mailed, these mailings could not have been "for the purpose of executing" the fraudulent scheme within the meaning of §1341.

Held: The judgment is reversed. Pp. 371 U. S. 76-81.

(a) This case is properly in this Court on direct appeal by the Government under 18 U.S.C. § 3731. P. 371 U. S. 76.

(b) It cannot be held that such a deliberate and planned use of the mails by defendants engaged in a fraudulent scheme in pursuance of a previously formulated plan could not, if established by evidence, be found by a jury under proper instructions to be "for the purpose of executing" a fraudulent scheme, within the meaning of § 1341, and the District Court erred in dismissing the substantive counts. Kann v. United States, 323 U. S. 88, and Parr v. United States, 363 U. S. 370, distinguished. Pp. 371 U. S. 76-81.

(c) Since the conspiracy count on its face properly charged a separate offense against each of the defendants, its dismissal also was error. P. 371 U. S. 81.


Page 371 U. S. 76

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