Court found as a fact that the Buick was used as a "convoy." The Court based its finding on evidence that the Buick directed the movements of a truck containing contraband yeast and sugar destined for an illicit still and that at one point in the journey one of the occupants of the Buick left the Sedan and climbed into the truck. Said the Court, 29 F.Supp. at page 753:
"The picture presented in this type of case is for all practical purposes on all fours with that presented if the truck containing the contraband was hitched to the automobile as a trailer. In both cases the automobile is the means of removal. This leads me to the conclusion that a car employed, as was the case here, as a convoy of a truck containing this contraband is being 'used in the removal' of such within the meaning of the statute. The automobile is forfeited."
In United States v. One Dodge Sedan, supra [28 F.2d 45], the defendant car "was the armed convoy, or pilot and guard" of the three other automobiles loades with smuggled untaxpaid liquor.
In my opinion, the rulings in these two cases are inapplicable in the instant case. I held in the case of United States v. One Plymouth Sedan, D.C., 45 F.Supp. 461, affirmed in 3 Cir., 135 F.2d 922, that the mere use of an automobile to transport those connected with the setting up or operation of an illegal distillery did not make the vehicle subject to forfeiture under Sec. 3321 where there was no showing that the automobile had been used to transport untaxpaid liquor or contraband raw material or implements of manufacture.
In the Plymouth Sedan case I stated, 45 F.Supp. at page 462:
"While it seems highly desirable that the law should provide for the forfeiture of vehicles used to transport those connected with the setting up or operation of a still, that is a matter which is exclusively for the determination and action of the Congress."
I am of the same opinion in the instant case. While it seems highly desirable that the law should provide for the forfeiture of a vehicle used as a "lookout" for other vehicles engaged in illegal bootlegging operations, that is a matter which is exclusively for the determination and action of the Congress.
Sec. 3321 is a statute, penal in nature, providing as it does for forfeiture and as was pointed out in United States v. One 1939 Model Ford Pickup Truck, Motor No. 4662201, 35 F.Supp. 905, 907: "This type of statute must be construed with at least reasonable strictness against the government * * *."
Accordingly, in consonance with the above, the libel is dismissed.
A decree may be submitted in accordance with this Opinion.