fraud, could nevertheless bring an action thereunder. Mr. Justice Jackson, being concerned over the implications of the opinion, dissented, and in his dissent had this to say:
'To accept the view of 1863 to mean that today law enforcement officials could use information gleaned in their investigations to sue as informers for their own profit, would make the law a downright vicious and corrupting one. Fortunately no one in the executive department has ever suspected that such an interpretation as the Court now indulges could be placed upon this statute. If we were to add motives of personal avarice to other prompters of official zeal the time might come when the scandals of law-enforcement would exceed the scandals of its violation.'
Because of this decision, and apparently responding to the views of Mr. Justice Jackson and also becoming aware of the abuses which had arisen under this statute as it then existed,
Congress, after extensive hearings, almost completely rewrote it, including the present new provision above quoted. In this connection, Congressman Hancock, one of the Managers on the part of the House of the revised bill stated during the debate as follows:
'The temptation and the opportunity is tremendous under the present law for renegotiators, contracting officers of the various purchasing agencies of the government, and agents for collectors of internal revenue to take advantage of the information they discovered in the course of the business to enrich themselves by instigating informer's suits. That is a temptation we wish to remove.' 89 Cong.Record 10849.
Congressman Walter, also a Manager, made the following statement:
'We feel that by enacting this compromise legislation * * * there will not be this ever-present invitation * * * for dishonest and unscrupulous investigators to turn over information to their friends or co-conspirators for the purpose of bringing suit against our citizens on information that either comes to them by reading an indictment or a bill of complaint or through testimony before some committee or which comes to them in their official capacity as a representative of the United States.' 89 Cong.Record 10846. (Emphasis supplied.)
It would thus appear that the present statute was intended to prevent a former government employee from bringing an action of this sort, where the information upon which the suit is founded was obtained by reason of his government employment. I therefore conclude on this basis also that relator may not maintain her action.
Furthermore, plaintiff's claim is barred by the statute of limitations. This statute is six years, 31 U.S.C.A. § 235. However, on August 24, 1942, Congress passed a Wartime Suspension of Limitations Act, 18 U.S.C. § 590a, 1940 Ed., 56 Stat. 747, which provides that
'The running of any existing statute of limitations applicable to offenses involving the defrauding or attempts to defraud the United States or any agency thereof, whether by conspiracy or not, and in any manner, and now indictable under any existing statutes, shall be suspended until June 30, 1945, or until such earlier time as the Congress by concurrent resolution, or the President, may designate.' (Italics supplied.)
It will be noted that this statute relates to indictable offenses, and was not applicable to civil actions. The statute of limitations under the False Claims Act was therefore not suspended by the Wartime Suspension of Limitations Act, but in 1944 Congress in the Contract Settlement Act, 18 U.S.C. § 3287, 58 Stat. 649, 667, enacted July 1, 1944, amended the language of the Suspension of Limitations Act by deleting the term 'now indictable.' This brought the False Claims Act within its purview, but it was not effective until July 21, 1944. The statute of limitations in this case, therefore, ran until July 21, 1944, and the time between the acts complained of and July 21, 1944, must be deducted from the six-year limitation period. The last date on which defendant is alleged to have committed the acts was February 15, 1943, and one year, five months, and six days of the limitation period therefore had expired when the Contract Settlement Act of 1944 became effective. As provided in that Act, the statute of limitations commenced to run again on December 31, 1949, three years after termination of hostilities.
Relator's complaint was filed on August 27, 1954, which was four years, seven months, and 27 days after the Suspension of Limitations Act was no longer applicable. Adding to this period the one year, five months, and six days of limitations which had expired from February 15, 1943, to July 21, 1944, the complaint was filed six years, one month, and three days after the last date of the alleged wrongful acts. Therefore, her complaint does not come within the six-year period, and the claim is barred.
Relator seeks to overcome this bar by contending that the Suspension of Limitations Act, as originally enacted and before the amendment above referred to, applied to civil cases. This would, of course, make the amendment superfluous, and I find no support for her contention. The cases cited by her are not contrary to the position taken herein, inasmuch as they relate either to criminal cases or claims relating to periods of time made after the amendment of 1944, which concededly makes the Suspension of Limitations Act then apply to civil actions in addition to criminal proceedings. Indeed, the opinion in one of the cases cited by her, namely United States v. Kolsky, D.C., 137 F.Supp. 359, states that it was agreed that the prior Wartime Suspension Act applied only to criminal actions and then went on to say that inclusion of civil actions was intended by the later Act. Also, in Dugan & McNamara, Inc., v. United States, 127 F.Supp. 801, 130 Ct.Cl. 603, Court of Claims, the Court came to the conclusion that the deletion of the words 'now indictable' in the 1944 Act leads to the conclusion that the Suspension Act then became applicable to all actions involving fraud against the United States, whether the Government seeks redress by criminal or civil means.
Finally, I should add that the complaint involves 15 contracts, but at the argument it was conceded that in respect of nine of them, the defense of res judicata is available by virtue of the decision of the Court of Claims in the case of Armour & Co. v. United States, 1952, 102 F.Supp. 987, 121 Ct.Cl. 716, the socalled Icing Charges Case, above referred to.
There being no genuine issue of material fact in respect of the points above discussed, the court has no jurisdiction to proceed with the action, and the relator is barred from maintaining it for the reasons set forth. Accordingly, defendant's motion for summary judgment will be granted, and relator's motion for the same relief will be denied.
Counsel will submit appropriate order.