Offence: Killing > murder
Verdict: Guilty; Not Guilty
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After an Interpreter was sworn, the Evidence swore, That those two Prisoners came, from Holland in the Packet Boat with the Deceased into England, having but little Acquaintance before, yet when they were here, they both wanting Mony and hearing that Mr. Harder had plenty, they laid wait for him, and Assassinated him, near Chelsy, in a most Inhumane manner, giving him no less than Seven Wounds in his Body with their Swords, one of which was of the breadth of half an Inch, and of the depth of six Inches, besides Rifleing of him of about 15 or 16 Crowns, and a Tabaco Box; after which, search being made for the Murtherers, F - was found in his Lodging, who presently denyed the Fact without being taxed, which gave great suspition, but Rantzau was taken amongst the Dutch Guards at Dartford, who did freely confess the Murther, and cryed out, Oh that I should be so unfortunate as to come into England to Murther so Innocent a Man! And when they were taken their Swords were Bloody; F - said that he had killed a Dog, and after said that he had never cleaned his Sword since he was at a Fight beyond Sea near Fleury, but that was a double Story; and it was proved that he was in company with the Deceased at Chelsey the same day that the Murther was done, and the Deceased's Shirt, and one of the Swords of the Prisoners, was produced in Court as a further Testimony against them, though the matter appeared very Strenuous and Pregnant before, even in all the Circumstances of it. The Prisoner, Rantzau, said, That F - was Innocent, and did not deny the Fact at his Tryal, but said that there were three more Out landish Men that assisted him: F - denyed the Fact; and that he was never at Chelsey. The Box was proved to be the Deceased, as was well known by the Maker, as also by Collonel Willet, his endeared and most Affectionate Friend. In the end, after a full hearing, Rantzau was found Guilty of wilful Murther, but, the Evidence being not positive in all its Circumstances against F - , he was acquitted .