« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »
"The. Witness: I will have to ask him [indi- | money in this account came out of the macating the bankrupt].
hogany box, but he cannot tell how much of "Mr. Durgan: See what he said. "The Bankrupt: I will tell you.
the money that came out of the box went into "Mr. Boardman: Never mind.
the bank account. When, in November, 1912, "The Witness: He said, in regard to when he was examined in the bankruptcy proceedI paid the $18,000, I should have it should ings, he could not tell whether he then had a have been mentioned there that $1,000 was de
. He posited, and that there was $17,000, instead of checkbook for this account or not. saying $18,000. Q. That is what your brother could not then recall the number of checks he told you, is it? A. Yes, sir. Q. You had for
Q. You had for- had drawn on this account during the year gotten that? A. I had forgotten that. I sup- 1912.
1912. He could not tell whether it would be posed, in fact, you would take it for that."
more than 20 or less than 20. In fact, he had It is impossible to reconcile this evidence “no recollection whatsoever.” The one defiwith any theory of a beneficial ownership nite assertion that he ventured to make was of this property vested in Williams A. Hunt. that his balance in this account on January Either he was in such darkness as to the 1, 1912, was about $10,000. A copy of this transactions as to discredit any notion that account was produced in this cause, and he owned it, or he was engaged in a conspir- showed the balance on that day to have acy with his brother to conceal the true facts been $758.48. concerning the purchase. The conclusion
On the other hand, Fred M. Hunt had comnecessary to be drawn from that hypothesis plete dominion over this account. He drew is the same as the other, for if Williams was all the checks and could sign any check that the true, beneficial owner, there was no rea- he chose to sign. The check for $1,000 of son for the concealment of the fact that the November 20, 1911, mentioned above, was purchase price had been paid by his own produced and offered in evidence before the checks. He went further in his examina- referee in bankruptcy. It bore the serial tion before the referee. He stated that this number 7100. An examination of a copy of $18,000 cash had been taken from a mahog- this account, furnished by the banks, shows any money box, which he owned, and in
this check as the sixth withdrawal. A later which he kept a portion of his wealth. This check in this same series is numbered 8. On box had contained, according to his account, the stand, Fred Hunt admitted that the num$80,000 on January 1, 1907. The origin of ber had been changed, but denied that any this fund, as accounted for, in the bank- sinister purpose had prompted the alteration. ruptcy proceeding, was his honest toil for A small pocket checkbook, purporting to a period of a few years. He was cross-ex-show this account, was produced before the amined further as to this fund of $80,000 in referee. From the cross-examination of Wilthe present case, and he testified that it had liams Hunt in this cause, it appears that the its origin in two very remarkable gambling earlier stubs had been torn out from this transactions, each of which netted him the book, and all the entries intended to show the precise sum of $15,000. This fund of $80,000 dealing with the account in question were. has been used, if the Hunt brothers are to be crowded upon two stubs. This book should believed, in paying for the property in ques- have shown the three Beecher checks. But, tion, and in the purchase from Fred of other if it did, counsel who examined the witness, portions of his estate, and for no other pur- apparently failed to detect it. This checkpose. I am forced to the conclusion that the book, though called for by the complainant, story of this fund of $80,000 is a fable. was not produced at the trial of this cause.
As has been said, the $10,683.86 actually Fred Hunt was examined as to the method paid to Mrs. Beecher was drawn from a bank employed in keeping this check account.
He account in the Bankers' Trust Company stated that each check was entered upon a standing in the name of Williams A. Hunt. corresponding stub. It is evident, therefore, The body of these checks were, in each in that the stub checkbook produced before the stance, written by Fred Hunt. They were referee was not a genuine document. It is merely signed by Williams, and Williams tes- quite evident, therefore, that the money that tified that Fred Hunt had full authority to went into the purchase of this property was sign checks on this account. Williams' the money of Fred M. Hunt, though drawn ignorance as to the facts in connection with from an account carried in the name of his this account is equal to his lack of informa- brother. The property was conveyed by Mrs. tion as to the facts relating to the purchase Beecher to Williams A. Hunt, subject to a of the property. The account was originally second mortgage of $6,500. This mortgage opened with the Mercantile Trust Company, was paid off on January 8, 1912, by three which company was afterwards merged with checks of Fred M. Hunt, drawn on the Batthe Bankers' Trust Company. Williams has tery Park National Bank, two of which were never been either to the Mercantile Trust drawn to the order of one Katz. Company nor to the Bankers' Trust Com After the election of Mr. Trask as trustee, pany. He does not know how long he has Fred Hunt produced before the referee and had the account. He never "bothered" with delivered to Mr. Trask a bundle of about 300 his bank deposit book. He does not know checks, drawn on the Battery Park account, when the merger between the two trust com- covering a period of several years. He also panies took place. He says that part of the produced a bundle of checks drawn on an ac
count that he carried in the Mechanics' & None of them did? A. No, sir. Q. Did any of Metals' National Bank of New York, and six them go to the Newark contract? A. No, sir. checks drawn on an account in the Bankers' 2: Did any go to Newark? A. No, sir; I don't
think so." Trust Company, standing in his own name. He also produced what purported to be a
These are the checks that have been "lost" stub checkbook on the Battery Park National by Fred Hunt. Two thousand dollars of this Bank, another on the Mechanics & Metals: $17,250, was paid by checks drawn on acBank. He testified that his bank book and But it is clear that Fred Hunt's signature Bank. He testified that his bank book and counts standing in the name of Hunt Bros. stub book on the Bankers' Trust Company account had been "lost in the shuffle.” This alone was recognized by the banks. Two last account, by the way, was by far the other checks were given to Blanchard, one largest account carried by Fred Hunt, show- for $750 and one for $500, drawn on the Newing deposits during a period of 18 months of ark Trust Company, on an account opened by $89,344.99, and except for the months of Jan-Fred Hunt on May 8, 1912, in the name of uary, February, and April, 1912, this ac
Williams A. Hunt. When Fred opened this count was the least active of all his numer
account, he filed with the bank a power of ous accounts. The three so-called Katz attorney from Williams, authorizing him, checks were not among the large bundle of Fred, to sign Williams' name to checks and Battery Park checks delivered to Mr. Trask. notes. At the time Fred opened this account, It is quite apparent that they were withheld, he had broken with the complainant, he and, further, that the stub checkbooks deliv- was heavily indebted to the Mechanics & ered to Mr. Trask at the same time were man- Metals' National Bank, and his balance in ufactured for the occasion. There are many the Bankers' Trust Company was reduced to things that point to this conclusion. Only $105.97. He had made every preparation to one need be referred to; that is, that the fail. During the preceding two weeks, he checks covering the period in question, all had given notes to five of his creditors. There or practically all, bore the vignetted picture had been recorded a deed of his home property of a ship with an appropriate motto. The
to his friend, Fred Brown, an assignment to checks remaining in the stub book bore no Blanchard of a mortgage of $4,500, an assuch vignette. Yet Fred Hunt had testified signment to his sister of an interest in another before the referee, speaking of these checks mortgage, and on the same day, an assignand stub books: “I will not say they corre ment of his interest in his uncle, Samuel I. spond in number, but they were taken from Hunt's estate to Williams A. Hunt, for a statthose books.” In the face of this testimony, ed consideration of $12,000. These two paythe story of these brothers, to the effect that ments to Blanchard, made by checks on this Williams gave Fred $6,500 in cash with which account, were clearly made
were clearly made with Fred's to pay this mortgage, which money Fred gave money. The mortgage of $4,500 assigned to out in driblets to his customers and friends, Blanchard as above mentioned, was assigned and gave in its place his own checks in pay without consideration, and when redeemed by. ment of the mortgage, is entitled to little, if two payments of $2,000 and $2,500, respecany, weight. The brothers contradicted each tively, credits for those sums were given by other as to the date of this payment by Wil- Blanchard on account of this construction liams to Fred, and the friend that they
work. The balance of the payments to bring in to corroborate them contradicts Blanchard were made in cash by Fred Hunt, them both. That this mortgage was paid by who took receipts therefor in the name of his Fred M. Hunt with his own money is proved
brother. Other and smaller sums were paid to my satisfaction.
to other contractors, while the evidence in Since the purchase of this property, there connection with these payments is not as has been erected upon it a stable and a ga- clear and satisfactory as in respect to the rage. The stable was erected by William L. payments of Blanchard, yet the preponderBlanchard, or, what seems to be the same ance of evidence is in favor of their having thing, by the William L. Blanchard Company. been made by Fred Hunt. There is no satisThere was paid to Blanchard on account of factory proof of their having been made by this work $17,250. Of this sum, $7,000 was
Williams Hunt. It is therefore clear that paid by six checks drawn by Fred M. Hunt Fred M. Hunt was, at the time of the filing of on his account in the Bankers' Trust Com- the bill in this cause, and at the time of the pany. Fred Hunt now admits giving three filing of the petition in bankruptcy, by virtue of these checks, or $3,500, but the payment of of a resulting trust, the sole beneficial owner the whole $7,000 is so completely proved by of the premises described in the bill of comBlanchard's books and the records of the plaint. Federal Trust Company of Newark and the
 The cross-bill seeks further to set aside Bankers' Trust Company of New York that a conveyance of a one-half interest in a cercounsel for defendant did not attempt to dis- tain mortgage given by one Churchman to pute the fact. Before the referee, however, Fred and Williams Hunt. This half interest Fred had testified, speaking of the checks Fred assigned to Williams by assignment drawn on this very account, as follows:
dated October 10, 1911, which assignment “Q. Do you want to swear that none of these was not recorded, however, until April 27, went to William L. Blanchard? A. No, sir. Q. 1912. On the last-mentioned day, Fred Hunt
handed to Blanchard this assignment, to-1 LEWIS, V. C. This cause was brought to gether with a deed of his home, made out to trial on the bill, answers, and replications and Fred Brown, and an assignment of the $4,- | The complainants and trustee in bankruptcy
cross-bill and answer to cross-bill and proofs. 500 mortgage above mentioned. He asked have only a common interest. The complain. Blanchard to have the deed and the assign- ant makes no claim under its attachment to ment of the Churchman mortgage recorded in preference over the other creditors. The comthe Essex county register's office. Blanchard the position that proofs in this cause are suffi
plainant and the trustee in bankruptcy take understood the errand and performed it cient to sustain their claim that Fred M. Hunt through his own attorneys, as the records was the beneficial owner of the property deshow. It is not necessary to rely upon the scribed in the bill filed by the Battery Park declarations of Fred Hunt made to Blanchard National Bank of New York, and in this view
. to find this assignment fraudulent. Fred had The transactions of the Hunts exhibit an unthe custody of this unrecorded assignment usual, although not novel, attempt of a debtor six months after the date of its execution. creditors. It is quite apparent, however, that There are no witnesses to the payment of the had it not been for the manifest lack of informaconsideration for this assignment. Williams tion regarding them shown by Williams Hunt, says that he got the money, $1,150, to pay no such light would have been shed upon them Fred, out of his pocket. That seems to him to the belief that Williams Hunt was not han
as we now have. This to my mind forces one a perfectly satisfactory explanation as to the aling his own funds. And supporting this opin. source and origin of this fund. Williams ion there is, of course, this fact substantiated Hunt's alleged reason for not recording the Hunt has not satisfactorily shown any source
from a sifting of the testimony—that Williams assignment is practically a confession of from which he obtained the money to make the fraud.
substantial investment in Washington street, "Q. Was there any reason connected with Newark. The tale of the betting events and the your brother why you did not record these pa- wealth held in the mahogany money box are pers and these instruments at the time when unconvincing. On the other hand, the bank they were given? A. I thought more than likely accounts, check's, check stubs, construction and he would regain his feet again-come to the mortgage payments, dealings with contractors front—that, he being a brother of mine, I did and mortgagees, the darkness of Williams Hunt not want to publish him all over.
about all these matters, the detail knowledge Did you say anything to him about the hazard- shown by his brother of them all, and his doous character of his business, or anything like minion and control, lead me unfailingly to the that? A. Nothing more than that I thought he conclusion that the ownership of the property was not doing extra good as he wanted to be is in Fred M. Hunt, and that he is the solo borrowing all the time."
beneficial owner of the premises described in
the bill of complaint by virtue of a resulting The foregoing was brought out by his own trust. counsel upon direct examination. This ad The relief sought by the cross-bill must be also mission has a double bearing on the case. It granted. I am not satisfied from the testimony was argued by counsel for the Hunts that it Fred's interest in the Churchman mortgage to
that there has been a bona fide assignment of was impossible to believe that Fred and Wil-Williams. Neither is the latter's account of the liams had begun as early as December, 1911, source from which he derived the money to to make plans for the protection of Fred's pay Fred, or his reason for not recording the property from his creditors. Yet here we had the custody of this unrecorded' assignment
instrument, convincing. And then, too, Fred have Williams testifying that that object was some months after the date of its execution. in his mind as early as October 10, 1911.
The whole affair looks like part of the plan to My conclusion is that this assignment of shelter Fred until the rainy season was over.
I shall advise a decree accordingly. the Churchman mortgage was given by Fred and accepted by Williams with the intent to
(83 N. J. Eq. 514) hinder, delay, and defraud the creditors of
KAROLY et al. v. HUNGARIAN RE Fred, and is therefore void. Williams is
FORMED CHURCH OF NEW chargeable with one-half of the interest col
BRUNSWICK et al. lected upon this mortgage since its assign
(Court of Chancery of New Jersey. July 25, ment to him.
1914.) I shall advise a decree in accordance with
1. RELIGIOUS SOCIETIES (825*)-CHURCHESthese views.
In a suit to set aside a conveyance of
church property, evidence held to require a BATTERY PARK NAT. BANK V. HUNT finding that the grantor corporation and its adet al.
herents were affiliated with the Presbyterian
Church of North America, and was not an in(Court of Chancery of New Jersey. March 9, dependent body without ecclesiastical affiliation. 1914.)
[Ed. Note.-For other cases, see Religious SoSuit by the Battery Park National Bank cieties, Cent. Dig. $$ 154–167; Dec. Dig. $ 25.*] against Williams A. Hunt and others. Decree 2. RELIGIOUS SOCIETIES ($ 23*)-CHURCHESfor complainant.
SECESSION-NUMBERS--PROPERTY. See, also, 91 Atl. 804.
Though one or any number of members of Condict, Condict & Boardman, of Jersey City, a church organization may secede at will, no for complainant. William L. Rae, of Jersey number, however great the majority, may seCity, for the trustee in bankruptcy. Lum, Tam-cede and take with them the church property blyn' & Colyer, of Newark, and Frederick Dur- to a new affiliation, so long as there remains gan, of New York City, for defendants, Williams a faction which abides by the doctrines and A. Hunt and Fred M. Hunt.
rules of the church government which the unit*For other cases see same topic and section NUMBER in Dec. Dig. & Am. Dig. Key-No. Series & Rep'r Indexes
ed body professed when the property was ac- , this corporation the 170 odd Hungarians who quired, in which case the property can be dis, had joined the First Presbyterian Church beposed of only in accordance with the method prescribed by the judicatory of the original came members. For reasons which do not body.
appear plainly the name of this corporation [Ed. Note. For other cases, see Religious So- was changed on October 24, 1905, to Magyar cieties, Cent. Dig. $$ 147–153; Dec. Dig. §. 23.*] Evangelically Reformed Presbyterian Church
Suit by Nemeth Karoly and others against of New Brunswick, N. J.; and later on, on the Hungarian Reformed Church of New December 9, 1909, its name was again changBrunswick, N. J., and others, to set aside cer-ed to Magyar Evangelical Reformed Church tain deeds of church property. On final hear- of New Brunswick, N. J., by which name it ing on bill, answer, replication, and proofs. claims the title to and ownership of the Decree for complainants.
church property in question. This is a controversy between two ecclesi- likewise formed under the general laws of
The contesting claimant is a corporation astical bodies and their adherents over the this state concerning the incorporation of ownership and possession of a church edifice religious societies, on July 12, 1912, by the and lands situated in New Brunswick. The claim on the part of the complainants is that of New Brunswick, N. J. Three days later,
name of The Hungarian Reformed Church the property in suit belongs to a corporation and on July 15, 1912, the officers of the old which is affiliated with the Presbyterian de
corporation conveyed or attempted to convey nomination, The defendants, on the contrary, claim that it now belongs to a corporation in consideration of “one dollar and other
the premises in question to the new corporation which is affiliated with an ecclesiastical
valuable considerations." This was done body known as the Reformed Church of
by two deeds which the complainants pray Hungary, having its situs and headquarters
may be declared to be null and void. The in the empire of Austria.
Prior to 1904 there were many of Hungari- certificate of incorporation of the new coran birth and speech in New Brunswick who poration (the Hungarian Reformed Church an birth and speech in New Brunswick who of New Brunswick, New Jersey) provides had formed a voluntary association for the purpose of having divine service held in that it "shall be and remain in inseparable
connection with and under the ecclesiastical their native language. Dr. Knox, then and now the pastor of the First Presbyterian Church in America and the Reformed Church
jurisdiction of the Hungarian Reformed Church of New Brunswick, took an oversight
of Hungary," and that it
that it "shall have of these people, performed their marriages, attended at their funerals, and administered power from time to time to adopt, alter and such spiritual comfort as he was able to, approved in writing by the Hungarian Re
amend such by-laws as shall be expressly and it gradually came to be looked upon as formed Church in America and the Reformed a sort of Hungarian annex to the First Pres. Church of Hungary,” and that "no transfer, byterian Church. As early as the spring of 1903 the Standing Committee on Synodical sale, conveyance, alienation, disposition, lease, Home Missions of the Presbytery of New incumbrance or mortgage of any of the Brunswick made a report to the Presbytery property of said church or congregation shall concerning this voluntary association, and be binding or valid for any purpose whatsointroduced to it Mr. Paul F. B. Hamborszky, ever, unless it be made by and with the exthen a student in the Princeton Theological press consent in writing of the Hungarian Seminary, who had been devoting his time Reformed Church in America and the Reand attention to this Hungarian body; and formed Church of Hungary.” The Hungarithereupon in April of 1903 Mr. Hamborszky an Reformed Church in America therein presented a request from 160 Hungarians be referred to is the highest American judicalonging to that body asking to be taken under tory of the Reformed Church of Hungary. the care of the Presbytery. Such proceedings
It will thus be seen that if the conveyances were had in the session of the First Presby- in question shall stand the property in suit terian Church and in the Presbytery of New is irrevocably taken from the Presbyterian Brunswick; that shortly thereafter 171 per
connection and is irrevocably transferred to sons were admitted to membership in that
a connection with a foreign ecclesiastical
dominion. church from the Hungarian voluntary association above mentioned. In the early part of Hutchinson & Hutchinson, of Trenton (Con1904 the Committee on Synodical Home Mis- over English, of Newark, on the brief), for sions, to whose care the Hungarian body complainants. Alfred F. Skinner, of Newhad been committed, recommended that they ark, and Morris Cukor, of New York City, should be dismissed from the First Church for defendants. Walter C. Sedam, of New of New Brunswick and should constitute a Brunswick, for Rev. Paul F. B. Hamborszky. separate mission congregation, in pursuance of which recommendation there was organiz HOWELL, V. C. (after stating the facts ed on August 5, 1904, under the laws relat. as above).  The principal question of ing to religious societies, a corporation hav- fact is whether the old corporation and its ing the name The Hungarian Presbyterian adherents were affiliated with the PresbyteChurch Evangelic Reformated Church. of Irian denomination, or whether they were an
*For other cases see same topic and section NUMBER in Dec. Dig. & Am. Dig. Key-No. Series & Rep'r Indexes
independent body without ecclesiastical affili- , and its Session of the First Church, exercised ation with any other body of Christians. If a fostering care over the spiritual welfare of they were so affiliated with and had so be- this body of Hungarians, and gave them macome a part of the Presbyterian denomina- terial aid in maintaining their organization. tion, then their secular affairs are governed During the whole period of its existence they by plain rules of law relating to the owner- furnished money for its support and in every ship of ecclesiastical property, and if they way possible encouraged them by contribushall be found to be an independent body tions and by advice to continue in their work. they are then governed by other rules which on April 9, 1907, the Rev. Mr. Hamborszky are quite as plain. I have no doubt but that was installed as pastor of the church; he the old corporation and its adherents were
was a Presbyterian in fact and in name; he Presbyterians and were affiliated with the was a graduate of a Presbyterian theological Presbyterian denomination in every sense of seminary, he had been a member of Presbythe word, and that they broke the tie of tery of Lackawanna, and later became a brotherhood in an irregular and disorderly member of the Presbytery of New Brunswick. manner. Nor do I think it can be said that His call from the congregation was presented any fraud or imposition was practiced upon to the Presbytery in full session in his presthese non-English-speaking people, as has been suggested, because the things that they ence, and then and there acted upon by the did and saw and took part in could not fail stallation ceremony took place in their own
him. The into impress the most ignorant and careless stallation ceremony took place in their own persons that they were connecting themselves and took place in open meeting;
church building. It was widely advertised with and were a part of the old corporation
a large with all its Presbyterial formalities. I may full. There was a sermon in the Hungarian
crowd was in attendance, the church being pause at this point for a moment to explain full
. There was a sermon in the Hungarian the government of the Presbyterian Church. | language containing a charge to the pastor, There is first the congregation or worship- and likewise a charge to the people in the ping unit, consisting of individual members same language by one of the clergymen presin every walk of life, who stand on an equali-ent, and the assent of the whole congregation ty with each other so far as their ecclesiasti- to the whole proceeding was manifested by cal relations are concerned. These are gov
a vote of approval, in which there were no erned spiritually by a body called the Session, negatives. On one occasion the Presbytery chosen from their own number. The Session met in the church building of the Magyar is governed by the Presbytery, a body con- Church on Hale street, and the women of the sisting of delegates elected from each individ- congregation furnished a noonday meal to its ual church within a certain prescribed geo
members. They made a mortgage in 1905 graphical area. The Presbyteries in turn are on the Hale street property to the Board of spiritually controlled by the Synod, a repre- Church Erection Fund of the Presbyterian sentative body, meeting for each state, and Church, which by the terms of the mortgage the Synod by the General Assembly of the ran without interest so long as the property Presbyterian Church. Thus is formed a remained in the Presbyterian connection. compact and strongly knit ecclesiastical body They contributed to the funds of the Presbyhaving a common purpose, with common tery; they sent delegates to its regular meetobjects, and bound together by valid promises ings, made to it reports of their progress, and and agreements, which promises and agree- submitted the minutes of the meetings of the ments may not be lightly broken, but so far Session of the church to it for examination as property rights are concerned, are as bind and approval. ing and cogent as are agreements made con All these proceedings point in but one dicerning other rights of property.
rection. They indicate beyond question that We have seen what interest the Presby- the Hungarians who belonged to the old corterians of New Brunswick took in this strug- poration fully understood that they were gling association prior to .its organization in- Presbyterians and were bound by their Presto a corporation. We have seen that this byterian connection. Least of all can Rev. corporation carried as part of its name the Mr. Hamborszky find any excuse whatever word “Presbyterian," and that when its name for his unseemly and disorderly conduct in was changed in the following year the word his endeavor to release himself from the “Presbyterian” was retained. After its in- Presbyterian control. It cannot be said that corporation and its segregation from the he did not understand what he was doing; First Presbyterian Church of New Bruns- he is an educated man, perfectly familiar wick other things were done which still more with the English language, and he fully unstrongly indicate to my mind the intention of derstood every step which he was taking and these people to form and retain the Presby- which he was advising his congregation to terian connection. The 170 odd Hungarians take. who became members of the First Church
 There is no doubt about the right of were dismissed to the new congregation after individual members of a church. organizaits formation, and until the final attempt at tion to secede therefrom at will. The same separation in 1912 the Presbyterian Church, is true of any number of members of such by its Presbytery, its Synodical Committee, organizations; but no number, however great