WONG WING v. UNITED STATES

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Case Basics
Docket No. 
204
Petitioner 
Wong Wing
Respondent 
United States
Term:
Facts of the Case 

The Chinese Exclusion Act imposed imprisonment at hard labor and deportation to Chinese persons convicted of unlawful entry to or presence in the United States. Wong Wing was charged under the Act. A commissioner of the Circuit Court (who was not a judge) found that Wong Wing was an unlawful alien and sentenced him to 60 days at hard labor followed by deportation to China. Wong Wing sought a writ of habeas corpus, but it was denied. He appealed to the Supreme Court.

Question 

Does penalty of imprisonment at hard labor and deportation without a jury trial constitute a violation of the Fifth and Sixth Amendments?

Conclusion 

Yes; consequently, the imprisonment provisions of the Act are void. Congress may deport without a jury trial, but imprisonment at hard labor is an infamous offense calling for judicial trial to establish the guilt of the accused. "It is not consistent with our theory of government that the legislature should, after having defined an offense as an infamous crime, find the fact of guilt and adjudge the punishment by one of its own agents."

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WONG WING v. UNITED STATES. The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law. 13 September 2014. <http://www.oyez.org/cases/1851-1900/1895/1895_204>.
WONG WING v. UNITED STATES, The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law, http://www.oyez.org/cases/1851-1900/1895/1895_204 (last visited September 13, 2014).
"WONG WING v. UNITED STATES," The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law, accessed September 13, 2014, http://www.oyez.org/cases/1851-1900/1895/1895_204.