Am.Rep. 385; Knote v. United States, 95 U.S. 149, 24 L. Ed. 442; Edwards v. Com., 78 Va. 39, 41, 49 Am.Rep. 377; Knapp v. Thomas, 39 Ohio 377, 395, 48 Am.Rep. 462; Young v. Young, 61 Tex. 191, 193; Nelson v. Com., 128 Ky. 779, 109 S.W. 337, 16 L.R.A.,N.S., 272; In re Campion, 79 Neb. 364, 112 N.W. 585; 11 L.R.A.,N.S., 865, 126 Am.St.Rep. 667, 16 Ann.Cas. 319.'
In Commonwealth ex rel. Greenawalt, Appellant, v. Greenawalt, 347 Pa. 510, 32 W.2d 757, 758, the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, by Justice Drew, stated:
' * * * It is a sound and well-settled principle of statutory construction that no law shall be construed to be retroactive unless clearly and manifestly so intended. Painter v. Baltimore & O.R. Co., 339 Pa. 271, 13 W.2d 396; Farmers Nat. Bank & Trust Co. v. Berks County R.E. Co., 333 Pa. 390, 393, 5 A.2d 94, 121 A.L.R. 905; Taylor v. Mitchell, 57 Pa. 209, C.F. Article IV, Section 56 of the statutory Construction Act of May 28, 1937, P.L. 1019, 46 P.S. § 556. Where the language of the statute is general, and might be given both retroactive and prospective operation, it will under this principle be held to be prospective only. Horn & Brannen Mfg. Co. v. Steelman, 215 Pa. 187, 64 A. 409; Sproul v. Standard Glass Co., 201 Pa. 103, 50 A. 1003; Peoples' Fire Ins. Co. v. Hartshorne, 84 Pa. 453. This rule is especially applicable where a retroactive construction will either destroy or impair vested rights, and includes a prohibition against laws which, while operating upon events taking place in the future, divest rights, particularly property rights, which were vested anterior to the time of the enactment of such law. Crawford on Statutory Construction, Sec. 278.'
Article 1, Section 10 of the Constitution of the United States provides that:
'No State shall * * * pass any ex post facto Law.'
In 16 Corpus Juris Secundum, Constitutional Law, § 435, page 886, it is stated:
'An ex post facto law is one which, operating retrospectively and on penal or criminal matters only, renders a previously innocent act criminal, aggravates, or increases the punishment for,a crime, alters the rules of evidence, penalizes an innocent act while assuming to regulate civil rights and remedies, deprives an accused of some protection or defense previously available, or alters his situation to his disadvantage.'
In Re Medley, 134 U.S. 160, 10 S. Ct. 384, 33 L. Ed. 835, it is stated by the Court that:
'Any law which was passed after the commission of the offense for which the party is being tried is an ex post facto law when it inflicts a greater punishment than the law annexed to the crime at the time it was committed; * * * or which alters the situation of the accused to his disadvantage.'
In Kring v. Missouri, 107 U.S. 221, 2 S. Ct. 443, 455, 27 L. Ed. 506, the Supreme Court speaking through Justice Miller stated:
'We are of opinion that any law passed after the commission of an offense which, in the language of (Mr. Justice) Washington, in United States v. Hall, (Fed. Cas. No. 15,825), 'In relation to that offense, or its consequences, alters the situation of a party to his disadvantage,' is an ex post facto law.'
In Lindsey et al. v. Washington, 301 U.S. 397, 57 S. Ct. 797, 799, 81 L. Ed. 1182, the Supreme Court speaking by Justice Stone, stated:
'The Constitution forbids the application of any new punitive measure to a crime already consummated, to the detriment or material disadvantage of the wrongdoer. Kring v. Missouri, supra, 107 U.S. 221, 228, 229, 2 S. Ct. 443, 27 L. Ed. 506; In re Medley, 134 U.S. 160, 171, 10 S. Ct. 384, 33 L. Ed. 835; Thompson v. Utah, 170 U.S. 343, 381, 18 S. Ct. 620, 42 L. Ed. 1061. It is for this reason that an increase in the possible penalty is ex post facto, Calder v. Bull, 3 Dall. 386, 390, 1 L. Ed. 648; Cummings v. Missouri, supra, 4 Wall. 277, 326, 18 L. Ed. 356; Malloy v. South Carolina, 237 U.S. 180, 184, 35 S. Ct. 507, 59 L. Ed. 905, regardless of the length of the sentence actually imposed, since the measure of punishment prescribed by the later statute is more severe than that of the earlier, State v. Callahan, 109 La. 946, 33 So. 931; State v. Smith, 56 Or. 21, 107 P. 980.'
There are only two states in the union which have or have had legislative pardons, Pennsylvania being one of those states.
Our attention has not been called to any decision of the Pennsylvania Courts construing the effect of the Act of 1939, as to offenses committed before the Act became effective.
I am of the opinion that the Act of 1939 did not take away any civil rights or remedies which the relator had at the time the Act became effective; that the Act of 1939 should not be construed to have a retroactive effect and so as to preclude a pardon to persons who committed crimes prior to the effective date of that Act and who, under the terms of the Act of 1860, would have been entitled to a legislative pardon. I am also of the opinion that relator received a legislative pardon. The relator is entitled to the writ of habeas corpus prayed for in this case.
Let a suitable order be prepared and submitted.
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