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UNITED STATES v. CARABASI

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF PENNSYLVANIA


May 31, 1960

UNITED STATES of America
v.
Charles CARABASI

The opinion of the court was delivered by: DUSEN

This case comes before the court on (A) oral motion for judgment of acquittal by defendant made at the conclusion of the evidence (N.T. 212-3), concerning which the trial judge reserved decision (N.T. 213), and (B) written Renewal of Motion for Judgment of Acquittal and For New Trial (Document No. 7). The trial to the court, after waiver of jury trial, was conducted on March 9 and 10, 1960, the finding of guilty was made March 25, 1960, and the argument on the above motions was heard on May 3, 1960.

The Information charges a violation of 7 U.S.C.A. ยง 1622(h), which provides, inter alia:

 'The Secretary of Agriculture is directed and authorized:

 '(h) To inspect, certify, and identify the class, quality, quantity, and condition of agricultural products when shipped or received in interstate commerce, under such rules and regulations as the Secretary of Agriculture may prescribe, * * * to the end that agricultural products may be marketed to the best advantage, that trading may be facilitated, and that consumers may be able to obtain the quality product which they desire, * * *. Whoever knowingly shall falsely make * * * alter * * * or counterfeit any official * * * mark, or other identification, or device for making such mark or identification, with respect to inspection * * * grade * * * or condition, issued or authorized under this section * * * shall be fined not more than $ 1,000 or imprisoned not more than one year or both.'

 The Information alleges that defendant 'did knowingly and unlawfully falsely make a mark with respect to the grade of certain meat food products of the Colonial Beef Company * * * to wit:

 '1. On four beef ribs, the defendant did place a U.S. Department of Agriculture mark identifying those beef ribs as 'U.S.D.A. Prime' grade, whereas, the true grade of those beef ribs was 'U.S.D.A. Choice'.'

 The Information continues in three additional paragraphs to charge that 26 other pieces of beef were improperly marked as having a grade superior to the true grade. On an afternoon in March 1959, an employee (meat grader) of the Meat Grading Branch of the Department of Agriculture was examining some meat at the Colonial Beef Company in Philadelphia, pursuant to assignment by his superiors, when he noticed marks made by circular roller stamps used by the Department of Agriculture employees on some beef ribs, which marks had a blank in the space normally carrying the two letters of the alphabet designating the particular meat grader who has placed the circular roller stamp on the meat. These official Department of Agriculture circular rollers contain 13 bands with these marks on the bands (G-1 to G-3): n1 G-1 G-2 G-3 USDA USDA USDA PRIME CHOICE GOOD USDA USDA USDA PRIME CHOICE GOOD USDA USDA USDA PRIME CHOICE n2 GOOD USDA USDA USDA PRIME CHOICE GOOD USDA USDA USDA PRIME CHOICE GOOD U R (or 2 similar U R (or 2 similar U R (or 2 similar identification identification identification letters) letters) letters) USDA USDA USDA PRIME CHOICE GOOD USDA USDA USDA PRIME CHOICE GOOD USDA USDA USDA PRIME CHOICE GOOD USDA USDA USDA PRIME CHOICE GOOD USDA USDA USDA PRIME CHOICE GOOD USDA USDA USDA PRIME CHOICE GOOD U R (or 2 similar U R (or 2 similar U R (or 2 similar identification identification identification letters) letters) letters)

19600531

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