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AMERICAN COMMITTEE FOR PROTECTION FOREIGN BORN v. SUBVERSIVE ACTIVITIES CONTROL BOARD

decided: April 26, 1965.

AMERICAN COMMITTEE FOR PROTECTION OF FOREIGN BORN
v.
SUBVERSIVE ACTIVITIES CONTROL BOARD



CERTIORARI TO THE UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA CIRCUIT.

Warren, Black, Douglas, Clark, Harlan, Brennan, Stewart, Goldberg; White took no part in the decision of this case.

Author: Per Curiam

[ 380 U.S. Page 503]

 The Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit affirmed an order of the Subversive Activities Control Board requiring that the petitioner register as a "Communist-front" organization under § 7 of the Subversive Activities Control Act of 1950, as amended, 64 Stat. 993, 50 U. S. C. § 786 (1958 ed.). 117 U. S. App. D.C. 393, 331 F.2d 53. We granted certiorari. 377 U.S. 915.

[ 380 U.S. Page 504]

     Under the statute, a determination that an organization is a Communist front must rest on findings that it "(A) is substantially directed, dominated, or controlled by a Communist-action organization, and (B) is primarily operated for the purpose of giving aid and support to a Communist-action organization . . . ." § 3 (4), 64 Stat. 989, 50 U. S. C. § 782 (4) (1958 ed.). In Communist Party of the United States v. Subversive Activities Control Board, 367 U.S. 1, this Court sustained the Board's determination that the Communist Party is a "Communist-action organization" within the meaning of § 3 (3) of the Act; in doing so, the Court upheld the registration requirement against First Amendment attack and found an objection based on the Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination not ripe for decision.

In the present case the Board's findings that petitioner is a "Communist front" were based primarily upon evidence taken at a hearing which was concluded in 1955. The findings which support the conclusion that the petitioner is controlled by and primarily operated for the purpose of giving aid and support to the Communist Party rest in substantial measure upon evidence of the activities of Abner Green, found to be a Party member expressly assigned in 1941 to be petitioner's executive secretary. Green died in 1959. The Board's order was filed on June 27, 1960, but the record discloses no findings or evidence concerning petitioner's activities after Green's death.*fn1 In the circumstances we think that the record

[ 380 U.S. Page 505]

     should be brought up to date to take account of supervening events. Since a registration order operates prospectively, it is apparent that reasonably current aid and control must be established to justify a registration order. Our Communist Party decision on the Communist-action provisions did not necessarily foreclose petitioner's constitutional questions bearing on the Communist-front provisions.*fn2 Since petitioner's current status is not clear on this record, decision of the serious constitutional questions raised by the order is neither necessary nor appropriate.

[ 380 U.S. Page 506]

     The judgment of the Court of Appeals is vacated, and the cause remanded for proceedings consistent with this opinion.

It is so ordered.

MR. JUSTICE WHITE took no part in the decision ...


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