DESERTION. .\ military offense consisting in abandoning, the service with the intention of not returning to it. 'l'o prove this offense it is to show absenee without leave and the intention not to return. The maximum penalty for desertion in time of war is death. In time of peace it is dishonorable discharge and confine ment at hard labor for five years. The I'itited States Government pays a reward of 830 for the arre-t. securing. aml delivery of a deserter, and the statutes impose penalties and forfeitures. _\ soldier wit. has deserted, find whose period of .twice has elapsed prior to lib, apprehension, is Lauded over to the military authorities for trial and sente•nee by a military eourt•martial.
In the British Army desertion is a common offe although in the majority of instances the soldier deserts to join another regiment immedi ately, in which ease should he confess, or be he is tried by a district court-martial on the charge of fraudulent enlistment. l'ormer ly the 4-barge was 'desertion and frauditlent enlistment.' and up to 1f4711 the rule Was to brand a deserter by tattooing him a ith the letter D. or C. (bad diameter'. The punishment for it first offense is usually front three months' to two years' imprisonment in a military prison. and for succeeding not more than live years may be indicted. In Germany and C4Intinental Europe getierall - desertion in time of peace is diffictilt. :flab consequently infrequent. owing to the com pulsory service sy,t•ni which in time of war is treated by all countries alike. death being the usual punishment. Desertion from the naval services of European nations is also treated with varying terms of imprisonment. or the death penalty, according to the nature and of the offense.
In tile United States _Navy, absence without leave, a itL a manifest intention not to re 'Urn, is always regarded as (1.-st it ion.
aithoul leave. with the probability that the person does not intend to desert. is at first regar•ed as struggling, and at the expiration of ten days, if still absent, as 4/4• rt ion. in
ease the commanding officer decides the point of intention and cans-, the per son's name to he entered in the ship's log book and marked oil the paymaster's hooks as a fif so fit t Oilleers are authorized to offer a reward not exceeding S.:211 for the re emery of a 4h...w•ier, and one la 0, exceeding $10 for the recovery of a straggler. In addition to the reward. there are paid such expenses at tending their lodgment. subsistence. and travel ing as have been fairly incurred. .\ ny reward paid for the apprehension and ticees•ary expel's( s of a straggler is charged to his account. The wages due a deserter are forfeited to the United if in debt to the Iloverninem at the time of his desertion, his elf( ets aro sold and the pro ceeds applied to liquidate it. The letter 'It' marked against a persen's name on the ship's books signifies desertion, and no application for its removal is entertained unless the department is furnished with sufficient evidence that there no intention to desert. Commanding ollieers of vessels au any United States naval station mire not allowed to receive on board stragglers or dose rters from other vessels, unless ordered so to do by the Bureau of Navigation, NvIlielf has vita rue of the recruiting of the navy. In ease of shipwreck or any other circumstance, except capture by an enemy, whereby any person be II. a vt the navy become, unavoid ably separated from his ecatIttla/111, it is door In proceed at (awe to the nearest ship• squadron, or slath 11, and report himself In the ',nicer in emit mand, t-zhotild he not an SO he is as a 4Ie serf er. and. no claim for wages is allowed finless he ran prove that he Was prevented by eireninstances beyond his control. The punishment of death.
or such other 'punishment as a court-matial niav adjudge, eau be inflicted on any person in the naval sery ice NI Ito in tittle of war de.crt, or en tices others to desert. In the me-eh:tin service absence It ithont lease for forty-eight hours is re garded a, conelusive evidence of desertion.