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UNITED STATES v. BELISLE

September 20, 1951

UNITED STATES
v.
BELISLE et al.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: MCCOLLOCH

The Assistant Postmaster, Superintendent of Mails, Assistant Superintendent of Mails, a Supervisor, and ten 'mounted carriers' at the Vancouver, Washington, post office were indicted for conspiracy to defraud the Government in the following respects:

1. By making and submitting collusive bids to.furnish motor vehicles for use of the Vancouver Post Office.

 2. By depriving and attempting to deprive the Post Office Department of the benefit of competitive bidding for furnishing motor vehicles for the use of said Post Office.

 3. By discouraging, intimidating and threatening others from submitting bids or entering into contracts for furnishing motor vehicles for the use of said Post Office.

 The evidence for the Government tended to show that the mounted carriers during the period of the alleged conspiracy (1942-1951) put in identical bids for the use of their family automobiles, on their respective mail routes. They did this after conferences among themselves. The then Postmaster, who received the bids and transmitted them to Washington knew the carriers were conferring. He thought this was all right and he testified that his superiors in Washington were apprised of the fact, and they thought it was all right. In fact, during the war period it was of special advantage ot the Government to have the mounted carriers use their family automobiles, because of the shortage of cars and the practical impossibility of getting others than the carriers to provide equipment for use by the Government.

 The jury returned a verdict of ...


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