United States. Congress. House. Committee on the J.

Charges against H. Snowden Marshall online

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There I stood waiting at the circle.

Later Miss Tanzer employed counsel and a civil suit was brought
in the State courts to recover damages on the 16th day of March,
1915. Three days after the beginning of the civil suit, to wit, the
19th of March, 1915, she was arrested upon a warrant sworn out by
James W. Osborne before the United States district commissioner,
charging her for using the mails for the purpose of defrauding, etc.,
by the mailing of the above letter. Subsequentl.y, her attorneys,
their investigator, her two sisters, and other witnesses were indicted,
charged with various violations of the Federal law. Miss Tanzer
remained in the Tombs until she could secure bail. This proceeding
residted in the discontinuance of the civil suit. She testified before
the subcommittee that she was persuaded to take this step because
of pressure brought to bear upon her then counsel and bondsman,
Mr. Spielberg, whom the undersigned believes to be a tool of James
W. Osborne. This tool persuaded here to make a "recantation,"
which she did in part, but afterwards repudiated on the stand, and
m.ade a stipulation, which is as follows:

Miss Rae Tanzer: I am satisfied to attempt to help you out of the difficulty you
got yourself into, because I believe that you were honest all the way through.

I am likewise satisfied that your attorneys, Slade & Slade, and the other witnesses
were honestly mistaken. I will not tell anything you told me unless I have the
absolute assm-ance of the authorities that nobody connected with your case will be
hurt in any way.

Harold Spielberg.

Notwithstanding this stipulation, she has been prosecuted, not for
using the mails to defraud, which has been pending for nearly a year
and a lialf, but for perjury, with the result that the jury disagreed.
From all the facts and circumstances in evidence it is clear to the
undersigned that in this case Mr. Marshall came to the rescue of his
friend Osborne, who was in danger not only of a civil suit, but of
prosecution under the Mann Act, and by ''wrenching jurisdiction"
Ii-om State court he has been ruthless in depriving Miss Tanzer of her
rights, her attorneys and witnesses of their reputations, and all parties
to her suit have had their liberties jeopardized in the most flagrant
manner. Indeed, the treatment accorded this young woman, the
elerk of the hotel, Mr. Saflord, and the other witnesses is cruel and
heartless beyond description.


Contrasting Mr. Marshall's action in the Tanzer case with his action
in the New York Tribune case, the facts in evidence show that the
parties interested were a real estate promoter, Mr. Mayo, and the New
York Tribune Co. The scheme for which the mails were being used
was to advertise that every person subscribing to the Tribune for
six months would be permitted to buy a lot in New Jersey for $19.60.
The evidence disclosed the fact that the land was worth not to exceed


$6 per acre, but was being sold at the rate of -1320 per acre. It con-
sisted of scrub oak land and sand. This ''summer resort," as it was
designated, had neither sewers, lights, sidewalks, nor other improve-
ments. The estimated profit out of the scheme is about three-
quarters million dollars. This swindle was investigated by a reputable
newspaper man, who reported the facts to Mr. Marshall. Mr. Mar-
shall secured the services of two post-office inspectors, McQuillan and
Schaeffer, who after five or six weeks of investigation reported the
scheme a swindle and a plain case of violation of law. Now, what
was done? Although the grand jury was in session, it was not
brought to its attention. Although Mr. Watson urged that subpoenas
be issued to bring persons before the grand jury, Mr. Marshall refused
to do so. At the end of the investigation, having before him the
reports of the inspectors, he wrote his friend Henry A. Wise, attor-
ney for the Tribune Co., that there would be no prosecution. To
Mr. Watson he gave the explanation that he wanted "to let Henry
collect his fee and get away on his vacation." Nearly a year has gone
by, and still no action has been taken, nor has the case been pre-
sented to the grand jury.


Contrast again Mr. Marshall's treatment of the Tribune Co. with
his treatment of Keen & Bard, with reference to this same section
215 of the Criminal Code. In the latter case the testimony shows
that Roger B. Wood, assistant to Mr. Marshall, acting as attorney for
the Pike's Peak Film Co. and the Pike's Peak Photo-Play Co., sought
to recover from Messrs. Keen & Bard certain films. The said
Roger B. Wood appeared at the place of busmess of Mr. Keen and
demanded the return of the films. According to the testimony of
Mr. Keen, the conduct of Mr. Wood was boisterous and threatening.
He declared that he was a United States district attorney. Some
months afterwards a warrant was sworn out through the agency of
Mr. Marshall's office, before the United States district commissioner,
charging Messrs. Keen & Bard with having used the mails for purposes
of defrauding, etc. Bard was arrested late in the afternoon and had
to spend the night in the Tombs. Keen dodged the process until
Monday, and then appeared with his bondsman. Both were released
on bail. The bail demanded was S10,000, and this excessive sum was
asked, according to testimony, at Mr. Wood's request, acting as
assistant district attorney. Mr. Henry A. Wise, former district
attorney and friend of Mr. Marshall's, appeared as their attorney.
Subsequently in an interview with the district attorney Mr. Wise
brought Mr. Marshall's attention to the facts in the case as not being
in violation of any United State statute. By reason of Mr. Wood's
private interest in the matter, Mr. Marshall referred the decision of
the case to Mr. William L. Wemple as referee, to determine whether
there has been any violation of Federal law. Mr. Wemple decided
in the negative. Notwithstanding, the case was referred to the
district attorney's office of the county of New York and again, after
investigation, it was found that these gentlemen had violated no law.



Contrast again the treatment accorded James W. Osborne, an
attorney, with the treatment accorded David and Maxwell Slade, as
attorneys. Although James W. Osborne is charged by Rae Tanzer
with conduct which was a clear violation of the Mann Act, yet Mr,
Marshall not only does not prosecute him, but rushes to his defense
in the civil suit for seduction and breach of promise. He is per-
suaded by Mr. Osborne to proceed in the Federal courts against Rae
Tanzer tjiree daA^s after she had started her civil suit in the State
court, and her attorneys had agreed to all Mr. Osborne's requests for
bill of particulars and speedy trial. Obviously, if there was any
offense at. all committed by Miss Tanzer it was a case of blackmail
and, .therefore, wholly within the jurisdiction of the State courts.
Although a pretended Oliver Osborne appeared one day at the home
of James W. Osborne, he immediately disappeared and has never
been found. In fact, as testified to by Mr. Le Gendre, the newspaper
men have had great sport at the expense of Mr. Marshall over the
alleged Oliver Osborne. Slade & Slade, who were attorneys for
Rae Tanzer in the civil suit, were made the victims of all the oppres-
sive power of Mr. Marshall's office, because they ventured to start
this civil suit against his friend Osborne. They have been indicted,
charged with conspiracy to obstruct justice. Two overt acts have
been set forth: The one being that Mr. Slade whispered to his own
client m open court, "Here he comes," meaning James W. Osborne.
A most ridiculous suggestion. Think of an attorney being indicted
for obstructmg justice in wliispering to his own client in open court.
But even this charge is denied by witnesses and it is by no means
certain that even this whispering occurred.

The other charge relates to the preparation of an alleged photograph
of Rae Tanzer and James W. Osborne taken together. The photogra-
pher of the New York World testified that the scheme was proposed
by Mr. Osbonie himself in the presence of the district attorney, his
assistants, Wood and Hershenstein, and a Government inspector.
The purpose was to trap, if possible, the Slades into the use of this
composite photograph, as a part of their evidence. The testimony
shows that the Slades did not suggest it, and that the photographer
never reported the matter to them. He thought it too ridiculous
to attempt. Yet these attorneys have been indicted for obstructing
justice, and this is one of the counts in the indictment. The under-
signed has carefully read the evidence in the trial of Slade and Slade,
which terminated abruptly, because the sitting judge became ill.
From beginning to end it is a travesty upon justice. The whole case
was tried to vindicate James W. Osborne in the public mind, and to
prove, if possible, that he was not the Oliver Osborne. The record,
consisting of 904 pages, discloses that not a page contains any effort
to prove either of these overt acts on the part of Slade and Slade.
Not a reference was made in the trial to the use of the composite


Finally, contrast Mr. Marshall's conduct with reference to the
crime of perjury. Mr. Frank J. Safford was a clerk in the hotel at
which ''Oliver Osborne" and Rae Tanzer registered. He appeared


before the commissioner as an unwilling witness and identified James
W. Osborne as Oliver Osborne. For so doing Mr. Marshall has had
him indicted and tried for perjury. The undersigned has carefully-
read the record in the Safford case and again wishes to state that it is
a rank travesty upon justice. The case from beginning to end was
manifestly conducted with the sole purpose of clearing James W.
Osborne, if possible, in the public mind from the charge of being the
Oliver Osborne who seduced Rae Tanzer. Attention is also directed
to the fact that the judge in that case was exceedingly unfair, admit-
ting evidence that had no place in the case, and in his instructions
to the jury argued the case as Mr. Osborne's attorney, going outside
of the record to convince the jury that James W. Osborne was not
Oliver Osborne. ' The jury found. Safford guilty but recommended
him to the clemency of the court. Subsequently, upon appeal, the
decision was reversed, the court holding the defendant had a right to
be tried according to the rules of law and evidence.

In contrast with the treatment of Mr. Safford, who testified in a
case, it is interesting to note that the first procedure against him was
an affidavit by one Mayhew, a post-office inspector, who admitted
upon the stand that he had no knowledge whatever of the facts to
which he made an affidavit, and when asked why he made it replied
that he was directed to do so by Mr. Roger B. Wood, assistant dis-
trict attorney, and Mr. Marshall has disclosed the fact that he had full
knowledge of this case and approves of everything his assistants have
done in court.


In order to condense this statement it is necessary to refer to these
matters without going into detail. There is neither time nor space to
refer to the testimony as to the misuse of power on the part of the dis-
trict attorney in the use he makes of the grand jury, of subpoenas, and
of indictments for conspiracy. The use of these agencies of justice by
this district attorney's office has created a state of terror in this juris-
diction. While it can not be said that Mr. Marshall is the author of
this abuse of power in the use of these agencies of justice, it is in evi-
dence that he has not restrained but rather encouraged the extension
of their abuse.

Respectfully submitted.

John M. Nelson.


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Online LibraryUnited States. Congress. House. Committee on the JCharges against H. Snowden Marshall → online text (page 3 of 3)