The opinion of the court was delivered by: Platt, District Judge.
Armand Fred Hoepker was indicted for refusing to report for
civilian work as ordered by his draft board in violation of
Section 462, Title 50 U.S.C.A. Appendix. He waived a jury trial
in writing, with consent of the government and approval of this
court. Rule 23(a) of Fed.Rules Crim.Proc. 18 U.S.C.A. He
stipulated in writing he refused to report and the Selective
Service System file be admitted in evidence.
Mr. Hoepker now maintains that he should be acquitted for the
1. The local board and appeal board erred in failing to
classify the defendant 4-D, in that there was no basis in fact
for the denial of a ministerial exemption. There is no evidence
to refute the prima facie claim to such ministerial exemption.
Therefore, the action of the draft board and appeal board was
arbitrary and capricious.
2. The draft board erred in refusing to decide on the record
before it whether the defendant was entitled to a 4-D
classification, and the appeal board erred in reviewing the
record under these circumstances.
3. The draft and appeal board erred and acted capriciously,
arbitrarily, and without basis in fact, in failing to decide
specifically whether the defendant was entitled to a 4-D
classification, and leaving this issue undecided throughout the
course of the proceedings.
4. The order of the local board for the defendant to perform
civilian work in a state hospital and Sections 1660.1 and 1660.20
of the Selective Service Regulations are in conflict with the
Act, because the work is not national or federal work, as
required by the Universal Military Training and Service Act,
50 U.S.C.A. Appendix, § 451 et seq.
5. The Act, as construed and applied by the regulations and the
order, calls for a private non-federal labor draft for the
performance of services that are not "exceptional" or related to
the National Defense in violation of the Thirteenth Amendment to
the Constitution of the United States.
Since the denial of the 4-D or ministerial classification must
be based upon the evidence as shown by the Selective Service
System file it is necessary to review the facts therein
disclosed. Mr. Hoepker completed his first questionnaire in
October, 1948. In it he stated that he was born August 25, 1928.
He was a minister of religion and regularly served as a minister
of Jehovah's Witnesses. He had been a minister since January 1,
1939, and was ordained April 19, 1939 by the Watchtower Bible and
Tract Society. He was educated at the "Theocratic Ministry
School," and was conscientiously opposed to war in any form. He
was working on a farm as a hired hand at $50 per month for his
employer, Philip Hoepker. A 4-D classification was requested. He
enclosed with the questionnaire a printed card stating he was an
ordained minister; 22 affidavits of persons describing his
relationship with Jehovah's Witnesses, and 58 signatures to a
statement he was a minister. He also added a statement of his own
that he regularly averaged 65 hours per month in the ministry.
Mr. Hoepker completed his special questionnaire for
conscientious objector in April, 1949. In this, he informed the
board that he worked as a machine operator for John Deere Tractor
Company in Waterloo, Iowa, from 1947 to 1948, and did farming for
Philip Hoepker in Addieville, Illinois. He did not say when the
job ended. April 26, 1949 the registrant was classified 4-E,
which was practically the same as 1-O conscientious objector.
A physical examination was given Mr. Hoepker on January 9, 1951
and he was found acceptable for induction to the armed forces.
The order of induction was postponed for the purposes of an
appeal. Hoepker again claimed a ministerial classification.
February 2, 1951, at his request Hoepker appeared before the
local board and the summary states the board told him that they
could not judge whether he was a minister or not, and that he
should appeal the case to the Department of Justice. February 15,
1951, the board again classified him 1-A.
A special hearing was given Mr. Hoepker before Honorable
Jackson R. Hutton, Special Hearing Officer representing the
Department of Justice, on January 11, 1952. His report was the
registrant appeared sincere and was a bona fide minister of the
Jehovah Witness sect. He recommended Hoepker be classified 4-E
(Conscientious Objector). May 7, 1952 the appeal board classified
A physical examination was again given Mr. Hoepker on April 23,
1953 and in his report of medical history he stated that he had
one job in the past three years, but his usual occupation was a
minister. He was ordered to report for hospital work at ...