48 U.S. Code § 644a - Jurisdiction of district court of cases arising on or within Midway, Wake, Johnston, Sand, etc., Islands; laws applicable to jury trials
The jurisdiction of the United States District Court for the District of Hawaii is extended to all civil and criminal cases arising on or within the Midway Islands, Wake Island, Johnston Island, Sand Island, Kingman Reef, Palmyra Island, Baker Island, Howland Island, Jarvis Island, and, having regard to the special status of Canton and Enderbury Islands pursuant to an agreement of April 6, 1939, between the Governments of the United States and of the United Kingdom to set up a regime for their use in common, the said jurisdiction is also extended to all civil and criminal cases arising on or within Canton Island and Enderbury Island: Provided, That such extension to Canton and Enderbury Islands shall in no way be construed to be prejudicial to the claims of the United Kingdom to said islands in accordance with the agreement. All civil acts and deeds consummated and taking place on any of these islands or in the waters adjacent thereto, and all offenses and crimes committed thereon, or on or in the waters adjacent thereto, shall be deemed to have been consummated or committed on the high seas on board a merchant vessel or other vessel belonging to the United States and shall be adjudicated and determined or adjudged and punished according to the laws of the United States relating to such civil acts or offenses on such ships or vessels on the high seas, which laws for the purpose aforesaid are extended over such islands, rocks, and keys.
The laws of the United States relating to juries and jury trials shall be applicable to the trial of such cases before said district court.
1960—Pub. L. 86–624 struck out Kure Island.
1959—Pub. L. 86–3 extended jurisdiction to cases arising on or within Palmyra Island.
Amendment by Pub. L. 86–3 effective on admission of the State of Hawaii into the Union, see note set out under section 91 of Title 28, Judiciary and Judicial Procedure. Admission of Hawaii into the Union was accomplished Aug. 21, 1959, on issuance of Proc. No. 3309, Aug. 21, 1959, 25 F.R. 6868, 73 Stat. c74, as required by sections 1 and 7(c) of Pub. L. 86–3, Mar. 18, 1959, 73 Stat. 4, set out as notes preceding section 491 of this title.
By a treaty of friendship, TIAS 10777, which entered into force Sept. 23, 1983, the United States recognized the sovereignty of Kiribati over Canton Island and Enderbury Island.
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