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National Prohibition and International Law, 32 Yale Law Journal 259 (1923)


Some recent decisions and rulings enforcing the Eighteenth Amendment and the National Prohibition Act have brought those laws into considerable importance in international aspects. The case, United States v. Bengochea, the ruling of our Executive Department regarding the Canadian schooner Emerald, and the case, United States v. Schooner Grace and Ruby present a set of mooted questions in international law.

The first and second holdings again raise the question whether a littoral state has the legal privilege by way of self-defense to take protective police action outside its three-mile limit to prevent violation of its municipal laws. The decision in the Bengochea case sustaining the privilege, and the ruling of the State Department on the Emerald, which apparently denies such privilege, represent the diversity of opinion on the question which the executive and judicial departments of the government have held at least as far back as 1804 when Church v. Hubbart was decided.

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