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1340. Drafting Indictments -- Theft From Interstate Shipment -- Facility From Which The Goods Were Taken

A split exists in the Circuits on the issue of whether the indictment must specifically allege the facility from which the goods were taken. The court in United States v. Manuszak, 234 F.2d 421 (3d Cir. 1956) held that an indictment which does not specify the facility from which the merchandise was taken is fatally defective. Other courts have disagreed, reasoning that the purpose of the statute is to protect every conceivable instrumentality of interstate transportation thus obviating a need to specify the particular facility involved. See United States v. Wora, 246 F.2d 283 (2d Cir. 1957); United States v. Spivey, 448 F.2d 390 (4th Cir. 1971); Dunson v. United States, 404 F.2d 447 (9th Cir. 1968); United States v. Richardson, 694 F.2d 251 (11th Cir. 1982). To avoid appellate issues, indictments should allege the facility from which the goods were taken.

[cited in JM 9-61.300]

Updated January 17, 2020