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United States v. Bottone

decided: August 4, 1966.

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, APPELLEE,
v.
CAESAR BOTTONE, SEYMOUR SALB, AND NATHAN SHARFF, APPELLANTS



Moore, Friendly and Feinberg, Circuit Judges.

Author: Friendly

FRIENDLY, Circuit Judge:

The convictions here under appeal stem from a scheme for the massive extraction from Lederle Laboratories, a division of American Cyanamid Company located in Pearl River, N. Y., of microorganisms used in the production of three antibiotics and a steroid,*fn1 and instructions for the drugs' manufacture. Although the drugs were covered by patents and specimen cultures were required to be deposited in collections available for purchase by the public at minimal cost, improved strains of the microorganisms and detailed manufacturing processes developed by Lederle which were not in the public domain offered vastly greater output from the same physical plant. The combination of this with the lack of patent protection in certain foreign countries created a market for stolen cultures and secret processes and furnished a substantial incentive for theft to disloyal employees and persons willing to do business with them. The enterprise that was the subject of this indictment involved stealing and preserving cultures Lederle had developed, temporarily removing and copying documents that outlined manufacturing procedures, and then selling the cultures and the copies primarily for ultimate exportation to Europe. As in so many criminal trials, the Government's case was presented mainly through the chief culprits, two former Lederle employees, Sidney Fox and John Cancelarich, and their lieutenant, Leonard Fine, all of whom pleaded guilty to the charges against them and were rewarded for their cooperation with light sentences of six months' imprisonment.*fn2 The serious crimes charged against the appellants, Salb, Sharff and Bottone, were on the receiving end.

The trial was in the District Court for the Southern District of New York before Judge Metzner and a jury. The counts submitted, on which appellants were found guilty and given two-year concurrent sentences, were in summary as follows:

Number Charge Appellants

1 Transporting CTC cultures and Salb

related documents from Spring Sharff

Valley, N. Y., to East Paterson,

N.J., on November 11, 1959.

8 Transporting TC, CTC, DMCTC Bottone

and triamcinolone cultures and Salb

related documents from New Sharff

York to Rome, Italy, ...


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