CENTRAL CRIMINAL COURT
FOURTH SESSION, HELD FEBRUARY 9TH, 1891.
MINUTES OF EVIDENCE.
TAKEN IN SHORT-HAND, BY
JAMES DROVER BARNETT
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ROLLS CHAMBERS, No. 89, CHANCERY LANE.
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OYER AND TERMINER AND GAOL DELIVERY
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COUNTY OF MIDDLESEX AND THE PARTS OF THE COUNTIES OF ESSEX, KENT, AND SURREY, WITHIN THE JURISDICTION
CENTRAL CRIMINAL COURT
(Including cases committed to this Court under Order in Council, pursuant to the Winter Assize Act of 1879),
Held on Monday, February 9th, 1891, and following days.
BEFORE the RIGHT HON. JOSEPH SAVORY, LORD MAYOR of the City of London; the Hon. Sir ARTHUR CHARLES , one of the Justices of Her Majesty's High Court of Justice; Sir JAMES CLARKE LAWRENCE , Bart., Sir JOHN WHITAKER ELLIS, Bart., M. P., SIR POLYDORE DE KEYSER, Knt., Sir REGINALD HANSON , Bart., Aldermen of the said City; Sir THOMAS CHAMBERS , Knt., Q. C., Recorder of the said City; PHINEAS COWAN , Esq., WALTER HENRY WILKIN , Esq., GEORGE FAUDEL PHILLIPS, Esq., GEORGE ROBERT TYLER , Esq., JOHN VOCE MOORE, Esq., and HORATIO DAVID DAVIES , Esq., other of the Aldermen of the said City; and Sir WILLIAM THOMAS CHARLEY , Knt., Q. C., D. C. L.; Common Serjeant of the said City; Her Majesty's Justices of Oyer and Terminer and General Gaol Delivery, holden for the said City, and Judges of the Central Criminal Court.
AUGUSTUS HENRY GLOSSOP HARRIS, Esq.,
CENTRAL CRIMINAL COURT
SAVORY, MAYOR. FOURTH SESSION.
A star (*) denotes that prisoners have been previously in custody—two stars (**) that they have been more than once in custody—a dagger (†) that they are known to be the associates of bad characters—the figures after the name in the indictment denote the prisoner's age.
LONDON AND MIDDLESEX CASES.
OLD COURT.—Monday, February 9th, 1891.
Before Mr. Recorder.
176. GEORGE HENRY YOUNG (22) , to stealing, whilst employed in the Post Office, a post packet containing a post packet of the Postmaster-General — Twelve Months' Hard Labour. [Pleaded guilty: See original trial image.] And
(177) WILLIAM JAMES GUTHRIE (18) , to stealing a post packet containing six cigars whilst employed in the Post Office. He received an excellent character— Discharged on his own recognisances. [Pleaded guilty: See original trial image.]
MR. PARTRIDGE Prosecuted.
JAMES SMITH . I live at 62, Basnet Road, Walworth—I am a carpenter, and work for Henry Bracey, of 2 1/2, Houghton Street, Strand—at the back of that house there is a shop where I and other workmen worked, and where we were in the habit of leaving our tools—on 30th December I le't about fourteen tools there—I did not see the place locked up; Hare did—this (produced) is my plane—this is my saw—I saw the plane at Kennington Station, and the saw in the following week.
EDWARD HARE . I am a carpenter, and live in Lewis Street, Kentish Town—I have worked at 2 1/2, Houghton Street—on 30th December I locked up the place between six and seven, containing tools belonging to myself and other workmen—I lost a basket and some tools—I missed them next day, when I found the place broken open—the skylight was broken open; a square of glass hacked out by an axe, which was lying close by; they got in that way, dropped down, and went downstairs, and broke open a gilders' shop—this apron belongs to me; it was shown to me by the police.
JAMES PENN . I live at 7, Houghton Street, and am a carpenter, working for Mr. Bracey—I left all my tools there, to the value of £5 or £6, among them five saws, two of which are here; I missed them on 31st December at 6.30, when I found the shop broken open—I saw them at Bow Street about a week afterwards.
JAMES HENRY LEMON . I am manager of a lodging-house, at 102, Walworth Road—on the evening of 30th December the prisoner came there with another man and brought a bundle of tools—they were wrapped up in this apron—these three saws were left in my charge for two nights lodging.
FRANK PEMBROKE . I am foreman to Mr. Forward, a pawnbroker, of 26, St. George's Road—the prisoner brought this plane to pledge; seeing something marked on the front I asked what he wanted on it—he said eighteenpence—I suspected it was wrong, and called a policeman without asking him any questions—if I had questioned him he might have suspected and run away.
THOMAS PARTRIDGE (Police Sergeant E). On 31st December, in consequence of a communication, I went to Kennington Lane Police-station—I saw the prisoner there; I told him I was a police officer, and he would be charged with breaking into two workshops at 2£, Houghton Street, between six p. m. on 30th and a. m. on the 31st, and stealing this plane and this knife, which he had in his possession, and a number of other tools from those places—he said, "I know nothing about it; the tools I bought, and this knife and plane, of a man the other night, near the Elephant and Castle, for one shilling"—the saws were tied up in this apron—I took him to Bow Street, he was charged, and made no answer.
The prisoner's Statement before the Magistrate: "I know nothing about breaking and entering this place; the tools I had I bought. The witness said that I carried the parcel, and the other man left these tools. Now lie says that I left them; he also said I carried a basket instead of a cloth. There were two or three other persons in the place when I went in."
GUILTY .— Eighteen Months' Hard Labour. There were two other indictments against the prisoner for like offences.
NEW COURT.—Monday, February 9th, 1891.
Before Mr. Common Serjeant,
MR. WILMOT Prosecuted.
MARY ANDERSON . My husband keeps the Lord Exmouth, Maroon Street, Limehouse—on 26th September I served the prisoner with some beer—he gave me a bad shilling—I said, "This is a bad shilling you have given me," and told him I was particular, because I had taken two the day before—he said, "I am a stranger in the neighbourhood"—I said, "How did you get the shilling?"—he said, "By carrying a parcel in the Commercial Road"—I gave the coin to my husband, who gave
it to the police—on 30th January I picked the prisoner out from five or six others; I swear by him.
Cross-examined by the Prisoner. I know you because you limped. (The Prisoner was told to walk across the dock). That is just the way you walked.
JOHN BRENNAN (H 476). On 26th September I was called, and a charge was made against the prisoner of tendering this bad shilling (produced)—I have kept it ever since—the charge was dropped, but I spoke to the prisoner, and am sure he is the man.
JANE CHAPMAN . My husband keeps the British Oak, Oxford Street—on 30th January, about 7.30 p. m., the prisoner called for a pint of beer, and gave me a florin—I said, "This is a bad one"—he said, "Oh, no; I don't think so"—I said, "I shall not put it in the till; I will prove to you that it is bad," and poured something on it, which turned it Hack—he said, "I know that it is a bad one; give it to me back, I have some good ones in my pocket, and will give you a good one"—he afterwards gave me a good florin—I gave the bad one to my husband.
Cross-examined. I did not take the coin into the back parlour; I did not leave the bar—I also tested two half-crowns and two florins of yours; they were both good, and I kept one of them instead of the bad one.
FRANCIS CLIFFORD (H 123). I was called and heard the charge against the prisoner—he said he knew it was a bad florin, but he had got some good ones in his pocket—I found three good florins and two good half-crowns on him—the landlady said, "Take that man in custody for passing bad coin"—he said, "I knew that was a bad one, but I had good ones in my pocket. "
Cross-examined. When I was called into the public-house the money was on the counter—that was before I searched you—it was when you were in the dock at the station that you said, "I knew that was a bad one; I had good ones in my pocket. "
The prisoner, in his statement before the Magistrate and in his defence, said that he knew nothing about the shilling; that he got the florin in Caledonian Market for coppers. NOT GUILTY .
MR. JONES Prosecuted; MR. POYNTER appeared for Groves, and MR. GEOGHEOAN for Beaumont.
MARIA STURE . I am single, and live at 59, Percy Road, Shepherd's Bush—on 20th January I was with Mr. Appleby on an omnibus from Piccadilly to Hammersmith, on what are called garden seats—the two prisoners sat behind us—some one spoke to me, and I missed my purse from my dress pocket on the right side next to Groves, containing £1 3s. 11 3/4 d. in silver and copper—Mr. Appleby gave the prisoners in charge.
Cross-examined by MR. POYNTER. I was immediately behind the
driver, on the side nearest the rail, and Mr. Appleby was in the middle seat nearest the gangway—Beaumont was immediately behind me, and Groves behind my friend—when I missed my purse the people lifted up the apron to see if they could see it, and I believe Groves assisted in searching—the omnibus stopped while the search went on—I did not want to give anyone in charge—I said that my friend could do just as he liked—no one laid hold of my hand or felt up my sleeve.
Cross-examined by MR. GEOGHEGAN. We got up in Piccadilly by the tobacconist's shop, and when we got partly down in Piccadilly I felt in my pocket to see if my purse was safe—I cannot remember whether I put my purse on top of my handkerchief—my handkerchief was safe when I missed my purse—my purse was not found immediately under where I was sitting, it was found on the pavement in Sloane Street—I saw Beaumont on the omnibus lighting matches and looking for the purse—the omnibus stopped at the corner of Sloane Street.
ALFRED CHARLES MANNING . I am conductor to the London Road-Car Company, No. 9612—on 12th January the prisoners got up on my omnibus—the prosecutrix was then up there sitting on the near side front seat, and Appleby on her off side—the prisoners sat immediately behind them—someone made a communication to me, and I informed the two passengers, and the prosecutrix said that she had lost her purse—that was just by Hyde Park Corner, Constitution Hill; I stopped the omnibus at Sloane Street, and the prisoners were given in charge.
GEORGE EDWARDS (Detective Sergeant B). On 20th January I was at the corner of High Road, Knightsbridge; Bradstock called my attention to an omnibus; I got on top of it; Groves was about to come down—somebody said, "A lady has lost her purse; do you know either of these two men?"—I said to Groves, "You here! where is this purse?" he said, "I know nothing about it; and this man is a perfect stranger to me," pointing to Beaumont, who was sitting immediately behind the prosecutrix; told Beaumont to get up; he did so; I looked under his seat, but could not see the purse—I said to Groves, "You come down"—he went down the steps with me, walked a few yards down the pavement, and said he knew nothing about the purse—a large crowd collected; he walked into the crowd with me, and the omnibus proceeded about twenty yards up the High Road; I saw it stopped, and saw Beaumont in custody—I directed Bradstock to take Groves, and as he walked out of the crowd the timekeeper Coney handed me this purse containing a sovereign, two shillings, three sixpences, 5 3/4 d., and three keys, which the prosecutrix identified—on the omnibus Beaumont said he was going to get down at Sloane Street or Sloane Square, but at the station the inspector asked him where he was going, and he said, "I was going to Charley Mitchell's boxing entertainment"—he did not say where, but the Washington was mentioned, and he said, "That is the place"—I have never seen the prisoners together before.
Cross-examined by MR. POYNTER. The inspector asked Groves his address in my presence, and I ascertained that it was correct.
Cross-examined by MR. GEOGHEGAN. I do not know such a music-hall in Battersea as the Washington; the inspector suggested the Washington, and he said yes—a valuable diamond pin was found on him, and some French money, and two half-sovereigns and 15s.—Beaumont continued
on the omnibus when it stopped; he gave me his correct name and address.
Re-examined. I found three silk handkerchiefs in Beaumont's pockets.
JOHN CONEY . I am timekeeper to the London General Omnibus Company—on 20th January, about 7.30 p. m., I was at Sloane Street, and saw a crowd round a road-car at the corner of High Street, Knightsbridge—I saw the prisoners arrested and went after them, and the first step I took I tripped against something on the pavement, where Groves had been standing, and picked up this purse and gave it to Sergeant Edwards.
Cross-examined by MR. POYNTER. The omnibus was standing still—the purse could not have been dropped from the top of the omnibus; it was on the foot-way, it would not have rebounded.
CHARLES PARKER (B 171). I was called and took Beaumont—I asked the prosecutrix if she wished to give him in custody—she said she did not think she had sufficient evidence; but afterwards she said she would—he said, "Mind what you are doing; I have a good character behind me"—I took him to the station, and found on him two half-sovereigns, a 20 franc piece, 15s., a diamond pin, and a walking-stick.
Cross-examined by MR. GEOGHEGAN. After the lady said she had not sufficient evidence to charge them, Beaumont remained on top of the omnibus; he did not try to get away.
GEORGE BRADSTOCK (V R 56) On 20th January, about 7 p. m., I was at the top of Sloane Street and saw a crowd round an omnibus; I went on top of it, and said to the prosecutrix, "You can give them in custody if you like," and Sergeant Evans asked if the lady was willing to charge, but no reply was given—a search was made for the purse; Evans went down and told Groves to follow; I followed Groves; the omnibus went on twenty or thirty yards and stopped again; Mr. Appleby came back, and said they would charge Beaumont—I searched Groves, and found a sixpence, threepence, a pipe, a cigar, and a latch-key; he said nothing to the charge.
Cross-examined by MR. GEOGHEGAN. Beaumont made no attempt to get away; he sat still after Groves got down.
Cross-examined by MR. POYNTER. Groves did not attempt to get away.
GROVES— GUILTY .— Eighteen Months' Hard Labour. BEAUMONT— NOT GUILTY . (See Surrey cases.)
OLD COURT.—Tuesday, February 10th, 1891.
Before Mr. Recorder.
MR. RICHARDS Prosecuted, and MR. WILLES Defended.
JAMES KING THOMPSON . I am a ship's steward—I am now staying at 29, Whitcomb Street. Leicester Square—in October, 1888, I made a deposit in the Post Office Savings Bank—the "James Thompson" at the bottom of this paper is mine—for the last sixteen years when ashore I have lodged at 30, Redan Street, Hammersmith, the prisoner's house
—when I went to sea in November, 1888, I left my bank-book in the prisoner's charge—I was at sea between sixteen and seventeen months—I never gave her or anyone else authority to withdraw money from my account while I was away—I wrote to the prisoner while I was away for my book—on my return I went to Redan Street and asked the prisoner what had become of my bank-book—she said she had sent it on to Boston, United States, in a piece of paper, and addressed to me—she said, "I don't want my husband to know anything about it"—about three weeks afterwards I made inquiries at the Post Office about my book—when I got my new book, about Christmas-time, I found £10 had been drawn out while I was away—I did not write either of the "James Thompsons "on these two pieces of paper.
Cross-examined. I have known Mrs. Peck about sixteen years; during that time I have made my home there when I have come back—I wrote to them on business—I did not write love letters to her—I did not get my mates on board ship to write love letters, or sign myself, "Your loving husband"—it is hard to nay whether that boy is mine (a boy stood forward in Court)—I am not the only man—he is my son to some extent—I cannot remember if I said at the Police-court, "The boy referred to belongs to me"—I have got nothing to do with the boy; I don't keep him—he is about eight, as near as I can judge—I have not admitted it is my duty to keep him; I have nothing to do with him—I have never left a farthing with Mrs. Peck for his support since he was born—sometimes I wrote to her—I do not remember when I was home in 1888 or 1889 requesting her to burn all the letters I had written—she said she had some letters, and she would wait till I got home, and when I got home she burnt them herself in my presence—I never mentioned burning them to her; I never asked her to burn them—three or four weeks afterwards I went to sea again—I lived in her house during the three or four weeks; I made my home there till I joined the ss. Cleveland—I might have been in the house from 5th June to 24th October, 1890; I could not say positively—on October 24th I went a broad in the Cleveland—when I came back here I went to Peck's house as usual to lodge, and lodged there for about a week—I could not say when the letters were burnt; I think it was about twelve months ago—from 5th June to 24th October, 1890, the prisoner had my bankbook—I joined the Cleveland at Swansea, where she was lying—I cannot say if I caused this letter to be written by a friend of mine to Mrs. Peck; I cannot read—I got someone to write a letter; I cannot tell if this is it; this is copied from some other one—I did not, to my knowledge, say in came from me—I did not say, "By 'dear Ellen' I meant Mrs. Peck "—I will swear this was not the letter written at my dictation to Mrs. Peck—I can write my own name, but I cannot read other people's writing—there were some of these words in the letter I wrote to the woman, but she has words there that I have not put in; I cannot read it—I was not in the habit of calling her "Dear Ellen. "(The letter said the sea was so heavy that they had stopped at Dungeness, and that on Sunday night they were of the Isle of Wight; that the first day he was so bad he could not work, and that he hoped a few words they had had would be forgotten)—I stopped at Dungeness in the Cleveland—I was not off the Isle of Wight on Sunday night—I was not ill on the first day I left—I had a few words with Mrs. Peck before I left because she put my clothes in pledge, and I had
to pay to get them out—I did not say I had made up my mind to take apartments for her and the boy when I came back—I have never. mentioned to her that I wished her to leave her husband, and said I would take apartments for her and the boy—I did not tell the man to whom I dictated the letter anything about the boy; he knows nothing about my affairs—I did not dictate to anybody, "It is my place to do it. but you must obey, and all will be all right. If anything should happen, don't give up home and look after yourself; add get everything you want, and I will settle up when I come home. I have not drunk a glass of anything since I left home, and I am not going to take anymore, so don't worry yourself about all my odd fancies. I am going to save for you; it is my duty. My dear little woman, you must not fret any more, for I know you have been fretting while I was away. Give my love to all, and kiss boy for me"—I did not dictate that to anybody to my knowledge—that is not the letter—I wrote a letter from the Cleveland about a month before I got home—no one on the Cleveland at Swansea wrote a letter for me at the end of 1890 to my knowledge—no one in October or November wrote a letter for me to Mrs. Peck to my knowledge—I did not to my knowledge owe £3 2s. to Mrs. Peck on 24th October when I left; I paid her all I owed her—I paid £1 a week during the time I stopped there—I have borrowed money of her, and she has had money of me—I did not have anything of her in October, 1890—I do not owe her a half cent—I put £25 into the Savings Bank; I had the bank-book in my pocket for a week or two, but she said I had better give it to her, and she would take care of it for me, and I gave it to her—I did not mention that the £25 was for the boy; it never came into my mind—I had never paid anything for his keep; I had nothing to do with it—I got the book back, and drew out £10—she never said she objected to my spending the money that I said was for the boy—we never had a word about spending this £10—I did not hand her the bankbook back to keep it, with the remaining balance, for the child—her husband was ill at one time—I never then tried to persuade her to leave home with the boy and come to me—I never dreamt of taking apartments for them; it never came to my mind; they got that up themselves.
Re-examined. Mr. Peck lived at 30, Redan Street, and does so still—I had intimacy with Mrs. Peck; I am not the only one, I know from what was going on in the house—I never authorised her to sign my name or to draw out my money—I owed her nothing when I came away—directly I found the £10 was missing I applied to the General Post Office and afterwards to the police.
WILLIAM LOVELL . I am senior clerk in the Post Office Savings Bank—I produce a declaration signed on 31st October, 1888, by James Thompson, of 30, Redan Street, as to account No. 2902, and a certified extract from the bank ledger showing that account—it shows that £5 was withdrawn on 14th October, on this warrant dated 13th August, 1889—I have compared the signatures on the warrant and declaration; that on the warrant is a very good imitation—I would not say it is genuine—the examination of notices of withdrawal is done in the office, not by me.
WILLIAM CLARK . I live at Carthew Road, Hammersmith, and am a railway signalman on the West London Railway, and the prisoner's son-in-law—in August, 1889,1 was lodging at her house, 30, Redan Street—Happy Turner, a young woman, lodged there at the time—the prisoner gave me
Thompson's Savings Bank-book with a piece of blue paper like this inside it, and asked me to go and fetch £5 out for Thompson—I went to Brook Green Post Office with the piece of blue paper, and they gave me £5—I did not write anything—I think my mother-in-law can write; I have seen her writing letters, but I cannot recognise her writing at all.
HAPPY TURNER . In August, 1889, I was lodging at 30, Redan Street—I know Clark—in August I wrote this name, James Thompson, on this withdrawal application—the prisoner asked me to do so, she said the money was her little boy's; his name is not Thompson—I also wrote the words James Thompson on another piece of blue paper like this—I knew I was signing a form—I gave it to the prisoner—she told me afterwards what she did with it, I cannot say when—she said she was going with those two forms to take the money out for her little boy.
Cross-examined. I was arrested on a charge of forgery in this case; the Magistrate discharged me—when I was arrested I said to the Sergeant, "Mrs. Peck asked me to sign Thompson's name, as the money belonged to a little boy, and she could not get it unless the name was signed"—I don't know whether the prisoner writes well or not, I have seen her writing, but I cannot recognise it.
Re-examined. I have seen her writing; I don't know it—I cannot say if this is like her writing.
EDWIN MOTT (Detective Sergeant T). On 19th January I saw the prisoner at 30, Redan Street; I told, her I was a police officer, and should take her into custody for forging and uttering two Savings Bank warrants in August, 1889, for £5 each—she said, "I never forged them. I own I had the money. A woman named Happy Turner, who used to lodge with me, said she could forge anybody's name, and she forged them. "
Cross-examined. Mr. Peck, the husband, is in court.
NOT GUILTY .
No evidence was offered by the prosecution.
NOT GUILTY .
MR. GILL Prosecuted; MESSRS. POLAND, Q. C., KEITH FRITH and SANDS Defended.
GUILTY.— Judgment respited.
185. HENRI EDWARD KEMP (25) PLEADED GUILTY to unlawfully obtaining by false pretences a muff and other articles from Charles Frederick Irish, and other goods from other persons.— Eighteen Months' Hard Labour.
NEW COURT.—Tuesday, February 10th, 1891.
Before Mr. Common Serjeant.
(187) FRANCIS VOKES (46) , To conspiring with William Talbot Sayers and Alfred Barnes, to cheat and defraud George Alfred Gadsden and others; also to wilful and corrupt perjury committed before Mr. Justice Day; also to uttering an I O U for £200, knowing it to be forged, and with intent to defraud.
GUILTY [Pleaded guilty see original trial image] .— Seven Years' Penal Servitude.
MR. MARTIN Prosecuted.
HENRY LOVEJOY . I am a carman in the employ of the Great Western Railway Company—on 26th January I loaded at four a. m. with prime fish and two parcels of crabs on the tail and two of lobsters in four hampers, and drove to Billingsgate, where I let the tail-board down level with the van, and fixed it with the chain—the hampers of crabs were then on the van—that was about 5.5 a.m.—George Smith was with me—I left him with the van, and went about 100 yards, and returned, and the crabs were still there—the boy Smith then helped me to get the fine fish off the front of the van, and I turned round and found one hamper short—that was about 5.15—it was not possible for the crabs to have fallen off; the van had never moved—I counted the packages before I went away, but not when I returned—this is the basket, it is marked "J. C" on one side and "F. "on the other—"J.C. "are the senders' initials—I did not see the prisoners.
Cross-examined by Adams. It was not possible for the hamper to fall off the van, because the tail-board was hooked up by two chains—I counted the hampers when I left the van, but not when I came back, because I left my van-guard in charge.
GEORGE SMITH . I am guard to the van driven by Lovejoy—on 26th January he drove to Billingsgate, and I sat on the tail-board—there were two hampers of crabs, two of lobsters, and some prime fish—when we got to Billingsgate Lovejoy left the van for three or four minutes and came back—I remained on the van—when he came back I assisted him to get the prime fish out, and both our backs were to the tail-board; when I went back to the tail-board I missed one of the hampers—I did not see either of the prisoners.
By the COURT. I do not know them—when Lovejoy came back the crabs were just the same as when he went away; I know that because I was sitting on one of the hampers—we were ten minutes or a quarter of an hour getting the prime fish off—it was an open van, not covered—fish porters stood below, who carried the prime fish away; none of them are hero—the tail-board was up, and the hampers on it; but it was down when I was helping to unload the fine fish—down does not mean swinging; it means level with the body of the van.
ALFRED FULLJAMES (754 City). On 26th January I was in Aldgate about 5.15 a.m.—I saw the two prisoners carrying this basket—I stopped Banks, and said, "William, what have you got there?"—he said, "A basket of crabs"—I said, "Where did you get them?"—he said, "Picked them up"—I said, "Where?"—he said, "In the street leading from Tower Hill"—I said, "What are you going to do with them?"—he said, "Sell them. What would you do with them if you picked them
up?"—I took them to Seething Lane Station, and on the way Banks said, without my speaking to him, "You won't find who they belong to, as the tally has been torn off "—seventy-eight live crabs were in the basket.
Cross-examined by Adams. This was near Middlesex Street, about half a mile from the van; it is ten minutes' walk.
H. LOVEJOY (Re-examined). There was a tally on the top of the basket lid with "Sidney Barber" on it—the van was unloaded at the bottom of Arthur Street East, it was difficult to get to the market—that street runs up to London Bridge—we went along Lower Thames Street to Arthur Street, and had to go under the bridge.
Banks' Defence. The policeman took me at 5.15. It was impossible to walk that distance in five minutes. I picked up the basket in Lower Thames Street, leading to Tower Hill; we had been out all night, and could not get a lodging. We came over London Bridge.
Adams' Defence. We picked these crabs up in the centre of the street, there was no name on them; we earned them, we wanted to get something to eat. I could not go and take the basket with two men on the van. The policeman says it was 5.15 when he apprehended us in Aldgate, that only leaves five minutes for us to carry the basket all that distance.
GUILTY on the Second Count. — Six Months' Hard Labour each .
MR. DOUGLAS Prosecuted.
EMMA TURNER . I am single, and live at 14, Henley Terrace, Southwark Street—I lived with the prisoner four years, and have had three children by him, one is living—I ceased to live with him a fortnight or three weeks before Christmas—on January 5th I saw him at three p.m., he followed me from Upper Ground Street, over Blackfriars Bridge, to the Ludgate Circus post-office—I then went away to sell my papers in Queen Victoria Street—he followed me there under the railway arch, and I spoke to a constable—I saw no more of him till 5.30, when I went for some papers to Stonecutter Street, Farringdon Street, and saw him by the post-office—he ran at me, and Fanny Doyle got between us, he hit her on her mouth and behind her ear, with his fist, and immediately afterwards dropped a white-handled knife apparently from his sleeve he picked it up, and I said, "Mind, Fanny, he has got a knife"—he went across the circus to the Albion public-house, and we walked after him to speak to a constable for him carrying a knife; he made a run at her again, but she slipped away, and he caught me by the fringe in front of my hair, and held my head between his legs, and stabbed me behind my ear—Doyle said, "Take him away, he has got a knife"—he got hold of my hair and shoved me, and I nearly fell back—I bled very much—he ran away, and I went to St. Bartholomew's Hospital, and had the wound attended to—I then went back and sent a young woman into a coffee-shop which the prisoner uses, to see if he was there—he was
there, and I charged him, and went with him to the station—when the constable took him he said, "Look what she has done for me"—he said that he had a mark under his eye, but I could not see it—he told the constable I struck him, but I do not remember doing so—my wound has healed, the doctor took the strapping off on Saturday morning—I had to stay at home for three weeks while it was healing—when I left him he said, "I will do for you before long"—I left him because he would not support the child, and lie was always knocking me about—he had not been drinking that I know of—there was a policeman on duty at Ludgate Circus.
Cross-examined by the prisoner. You struck the first blow, not Fanny Doyle—you came to see the child, and I said, If you want the child take it;" you only came to annoy me—I did not fetch Harry Woodley round—he struck you on Sunday, when you called him out of his name.
By the COURT. Harry Woodley lent me 4s.—he was not at Ludgate Circus; I have never lived with him—I said before, "He struck me, and Harry Woodley then hit him;" that was the week before Christmas—I also said, "The defendant struck me because he accused me of going with this young man "—the baby is a year and nine months old.
FANNY DOYLE . I live at 4, Granby Gardens, Lower Marsh, Lambeth—I went with the last witness to Stonecutter Street, to get her papers, and the prisoner crossed the road outside the Ludgate Circus post-office, and tried to get hold of her hair; I got between them to prevent his striking her, and he struck me on my ear with his fist, and broke my earring—he had nothing in his hand, but he had a white-handled table knife in his sleeve, which he dropped and picked it up, and walked towards the Albion public-house, and Turner crossed to give him in custody for carrying a knife about, and he got hold of her by the fringe, and struck me on my chin, and then he got her head between his legs and struck the knife down behind her ear, and threw her on the pavement and ran away with the knife—we took Turner to the hospital, and then came back, and the prisoner was fetched out and given in custody—he struck me twice—he hurt me when he broke my ear-ring—I have had it mended—I never struck him, and I did not see Turner strike him.
Cross-examined. I did not call you a b----bastard; I did not tear the ear-ring out of my ear myself.
HARRY DORMAN (346 City). I found the prisoner in a coffee-house, in Fleet Lane, and told him I took him for assaulting Turner—he said, "See what she has done for me," showing me a slight mark under his right nostril, which appeared to have been bleeding—I took him to the station, and in answer to the charge he said, "This is all coming about through being in the hospital"—he was perfectly sober—I did not find the knife.
JOHN HARDY MAUGHAN , M. R. C. S. I am house-surgeon at St. Bartholomew's Hospital—the prosecutrix came there on 5th January, between 5 and 6 p. m.—she had a clean cut wound extending from about an inch from her ear backwards for three inches, and a graze on the right side of her neck a quarter of an inch deep—it bled a good deal—a table-knife would do it—it has never been dangerous, it has quite healed now.
Witnesses for the Defence.
front of the Post Office, between the prisoner and Emma Turner; she said, "This man continually keeps following me about, what for I don't know, as he has no claim on me"—I told her she could go one way and he the other, and she ran at him and struck him several times on his face with her fist, and on the nose—I separated them again and told her to go away—she went a few yards and doubled round again and made a second attack on him, striking him on his face—several people said she had got a key in her hand striking him with it, but I did not see it—I said if she did not go away I should take her in custody for disorderly conduct—she said, "No doubt you will do a b----lot"—she followed him a third time and struck him repeatedly on his face, and his nose was bleeding freely—she went away to Farringdon Street and he went towards the Albion public-house—I did not see anything of the assault in the afternoon.
Cross-examined. This was about 3 p.m.
Prisoner's Defence. I never had a knife in my hand all day long. They came running after me and said I had a knife. She took something from her pocket and struck me on my face. They came to the coffee-house and took me in charge.
NOT GUILTY .
OLD COURT.—Wednesday, February 11th, 1891.
Before Mr. Justice Charles.
MESSRS. CHARLES MATHEWS and GILL Prosecuted, and MR. HUTTON Defended.
JOHN PATRICK REGAN . I did live at Bournmouth Road, Rye Lane, Peckham; I am now living at 6, Blue Anchor Lane, Peckham—I am a costermonger—I was formerly a private in the 4th Battalion of the King's Royal Rifles—I was serving in that regiment in the beginning of 1888—in March, 1888, the regiment was at Umballah, in India, with other regiments—I know the prisoner—he was a private in the H Company of the same battalion—he went out to India with me in 1882, and we returned together in 1889—during the time we were in the same regiment we drank very often together—I saw a great deal of him—I knew Lance-corporal Bacon, he was Provost-corporal at the camp—I also knew Private James Downs—while we were in camp together I remember the prisoner doing defaulters' drill—it was Bacon's duty to see that the men did not go to the canteen at unusual hours—while we were at Umballah the prisoner said that he would do for Bacon, and if he did not get the chance there he would in coming home, if he went home along with us aboard ship—he said he would throw him overboard if he got the chance—he said that while we were in camp at Umballah and previous to that as well, at Peshawar—on the march from there to Umballah he said that Bacon was always down upon him—I can say for certain that he spoke of Bacon in that way on three occasions—I cannot fix the days—I remember the murder of Downs, it was spoken of at the time and afterwards—the prisoner never spoke to me about it.
Cross-examined. I came home to England with the prisoner and Bacon together in the same ship—after February, 1888, we were all three in the same regiment together—we came home in March, 1889; I was discharged
on 17th April, before the prisoner—the first occasion on which the prisoner said he would do for Bacon was in the canteen at Peshawar; we were drinking together, and others were drinking there also—the others could have heard what he said, it was said openly in the canteen amongst ourselves—the second occasion was in the same place at Peshawar, after he came off drill; he was on defaulters' drill at the time—I was not on drill with him, I met him coming off—that was not the only threat that occurred among the men, if it had not been I should have taken further notice of it, and reported it—I took it as a bye word; I have heard other men say the same thing—I gave evidence at the inquest—the third occasion was in the canteen at Umballah—I took no notice of it—there were only one or two-others there; I could not mention their names.
Re-examined. I cannot fix any dates when this was said—the third occasion was a few weeks after we arrived at Umballah; it was before Downs' death.
JAMES BRENNAN . I live at 16, Charles Street, Oakley Street, Lambeth—I am a labourer by trade—I was formerly in the 4th battalion of the King's Royal Rifles—I served with that regiment in India—I was with the regiment on the march to Umballah at the end of 1887 and the beginning of 1888—we reached there on 15th February—I knew the prisoner, and Bacon and Downs—while in camp at Umballah I was on several occasions punished for breaking out of barracks—I was confined to barracks, and had to do defaulters' drill—the prisoner was also doing defaulters' drill with me on two or three occasions; I could not say the dates; it was before the murder—Bacon was the provost; his duty was to arrest all those leaving camp without permission, or absent—during the day he would look after those who were doing defaulters' drill—the prisoner never spoke to me confidentially about Bacon, but he passed the remark that he would do for the b----some day, or words to that effect—I have heard him say something to that effect on several occasions—I remember the night of the murder; I am not positive that I was confined in camp that night, but I could not have been released more than a day or two of the murder—I saw the prisoner in the canteen early in the evening—I think at that time the canteen was only open till eight at night; I know it was altered while I was at Umballah from half-past eight to nine—those who were doing defaulters' drill, or under punishment, would be allowed an hour, from six to seven in the evening, to go to the canteen—I drank with Downs that evening; he was off duty—as far as I can think he had on a charkee suit and a Guthrie jacket, which is a jacket issued out at the frontier station to keep the men warm at night—I should say it was between nine and ten when Downs was murdered—it was early in the evening that I saw him; I saw the prisoner about the same lime—I did not notice how the prisoner was dressed that night—there was a special rule that we were to wear charkee of an evening—if the weather was fine we might wear serge, but we were not to wear anything but white in the daytime—charkee is a sort of brown colour, a canary colour—about half-past nine on that night I was near Downs' tent, and saw him being assisted by two men, having his arms round them—I assisted him; he was being taken to the section hospital, by myself and several others—I only recollect Huggins—I saw that Downs' throat was cut, and his head was pressed into his
body—I heard a question put to him—he made some movement with his hand, and pointed towards the gymnasium school in the married quarter—he did not speak once—he died as soon as we got to the hospital—I did not return to England at the same time as the prisoner—I was invalided home in 1889—on 15th October last year I identified the prisoner from among some other men—on 22nd October I was present at Bow Street—I had heard his confession of this murder—I had always been on friendly terms with him—on 22nd I went to the cells, and spoke to him; at least he spoke to me—he shook hands with me—I asked him how he was—he said he felt much better now he had confessed his crime—he said it was gnawing his stomach away till he confessed—he also said, "I am so sorry I killed poor James Downs; he was such a nice fellow"—Downs was very popular in the regiment; he was beloved by every one in it—he told me voluntarily that he had put the jacket and razor in a hollow tree by a wasps' nest in the wood—I said, "The hollow tree in the wood?"—he said, "Yes," and I said, "I know it"—I understood the tree he meant; it was about 200 yards from the camp.
Cross-examined. A detective and Regan, a comrade, were at the cell with me when I saw the prisoner; I was not in the cell—I did not give evidence that day, I did on the next hearing, on the 22nd; some evidence had been given before that—I was only once in the witness-box—when I saw him at the Police-court he shook hands with me immediately he saw me—he said he felt better since he had confessed his crime—to the best of my knowledge I said the same at the Police-court—what I said was read over to me and I signed it—what I said there was, "It is a pity poor Downs was murdered, I have been sorry for it ever since"—that is correct—the prisoner never personally told me he would do for Downs, he passed the remark, and not only him, but other men have done the same, men who had got into trouble.
Re-examined. Bacon was very unpopular—I think we arrived at Umballah about the end of February or the beginning of March, I can't say which; that is as near as I can fix it—the prisoner's remarks were made before the death of Downs.
GEORGE HENRY BACON . I am now a platelayer in the service of the Great Northern Railway, and live at 27, Bright Street, Newark—I was formerly in the Army—in February, 1888, I was in the 4th Battalion of the King's Royal Rifles, in the E company, and from the middle to the end of February I was in camp at Umballah—the prisoner was serving there in the H Company of the same battalion—I was the Provost-corporal of the battalion; I was appointed so at Surat in 1886, and I acted as such at Peshawar in 1887 and 1888 before we commenced the march to Umballah—we reached Umballah on the 15th February—while, there a good many privates were sentenced to defaulters' drill—it was my duty to see after the discipline of the battalion—the defaulters came under my supervision—I do not know whether the prisoner was ever a defaulter; I always had to patrol the road leading from the camp to the town to see if there were any men absent—I could go anywhere I liked, where I thought I could find any; I did that duty at night—I had assistants; there were no fixed hours; ordinarily it was from about nine to twelve—I know the road leading from the camp to the military gymnasium—I used to go on that road amongst other places in the ordinary course between those hours—I remember the night of Downs'
murder; I was on patrol duty that night—I should be going across the common at the time it was done, towards the barracks; that would be a little over a quarter of a mile from the main road—I had been patrolling that main road some two or three nights before the murder—I did not see the prisoner that evening to my knowledge; I saw him that day—he was a defaulter—I don't remember that he was a defaulter that day; I remember seeing him that morning in barracks, to my knowledge he had no ill-will towards me; he had never threatened me in my presence; I was on good terms with him as far as I know; I had no ill-feeling whatever towards him—I remember reporting him once; that was after the murder, never before, to my recollection—I do not remember seeing Downs on the day of the murder—I do not remember how I was dressed that night; my ordinary dress would be black serge—I should wear charkee if that was the order—I cannot remember what the order was at that time.
Cross-examined. My assistants would patrol along with me; I should not patrol alone—sixteen men would sleep in one tent—bedtime would be about half-past nine or a quarter to ten—a man would be liable to punishment if absent at that time unless he had leave—I cannot say if Downs had permission that night; if he had he would have to be in by tattoo; he would have to get a pass from the commanding officer if he was later—I do not recollect reporting the prisoner before we got to Umballah, or while there; I was on very good terms with him.
Re-examined. I and my assistants would go out to patrol together, and we would skirmish across the common, four or five of us, perhaps, sometimes more, sometimes less—we sometimes divided, but we should not be very much apart; eight or nine yards; we could speak to one another.
ALFRED ALEXANDER BARNES . I am a sergeant in the 5th battalion of the King's Royal Rifles, stationed at Huntingdon—in February, 1888, I was serving as sergeant in the 4th battalion when they marched from Peshawar to Umballah—I remember Bacon, the prisoner, and Downs being at Umballah, and all three in the camp together—Bacon was the provost-corporal of the battalion, that is a military policeman; his duty was to patrol the camp at night—I remember the night of the murder of Downs; he was off duty that night, and had leave to go into the city if he wished—I saw him in the afternoon; he was then dressed in a suit of charkee, which used to be worn then in the morning or afternoon for drill purposes; at night you could wear what you pleased, you would then wear black clothing—Downs was just the same height and build as Bacon—you would take them for twin brothers, the only difference was that one had ginger hair, Downs had the lighter hair—having leave to go into the city, he would go at any hour he liked after afternoon parade at five—he would have to be back by ten—in going to and from the camp to the city he would go by the main road, past the military gymnasium—the latrines were attached to the camp, about twenty yards from the tent the prisoner slept in—I do not remember seeing the prisoner on that afternoon—the night was a dark night—I was in camp about a quarter to ten that night—I heard something, in consequence of which I went to Downs' tent in the F company's lines about 200 yards from the gymnasium—I there saw Downs lying on the ground, half in and half out of the tent, his throat being cut—I saw a scar on one side of his head, but at present I cannot say whether it was the right side
or the left, as if he had been hit with a stick—his body was taken to the hospital, about 600 yards from the camp—he died either whilst being taken there or on his admission—he had on what we call a Guthrie jacket, a jacket that was served out to be worn at that time, that was a black coat with red facings—I cannot remember what trousers he had on—the privates were provided with four suits of clothes, two of charkee and two of black, and four suits of white; eight suits altogether, that would be the regulation allowance, they would be numbered with the number of the regiment—razors are supplied, also marked—the clothes are marked with paint, and the razors with a hot iron—it was a common thing for the men to have clothes in excess of the regulation allowance—there was a kit inspection every week, at which every man, in order to pass muster, had to show everything he had, I mean his clothing and everything served out to him from the stores; if he had more than the regulation allowance nothing would be said; he might have more; if he had not enough he would get fresh clothing out of the stores—if he had more he would not have to show them—he could buy at a bazaar—those things would not be numbered—he could also buy from one of his companions—if he lost his razor he could get another out of the stores, that would be numbered—he could buy a razor in the town, that would not pass at the inspection, he would not produce it, if he did no doubt he would get into serious trouble; the inspections were very minute, they took place every Saturday—there was one on the Saturday before Downs' death.
Cross-examined. I do not remember the omission of any kit inspection during the time we were at Umballah—Downs might have had a charkee suit under his jacket—I can swear that he had a Guthrie jacket on when I saw him at the hospital; I simply infer that he had a charkee suit on—I know that the theory of the prosecution is that the prisoner mistook Downs for Bacon—the charkee clothing would not be such as a soldier would wear going into the town at night, but in camp—anything purchased at the stores would be entered in a book by the colour-sergeant—charkee will wash; it would be sent to the wash at the end of every week.
By the JURY. The soldiers would wear glengarry caps on going out in the evening, the police would wear the same—it would not be taken as a good excuse at the kit inspection that the charkee suit had gone to the wash; everything gone to the wash was entered in a book and produced by a corporal, besides that, the men could wash for themselves—it would be possible for a man who knew the camp well to get out without being seen by the sentry—there were two or three lights on the main road—a man could buy at the bazaars, that would be out of his own pocket; those things would not be marked or entered, or taken to the kit inspection—all the clothing produced at the inspection would be numbered—if a soldier died his comrade could buy some of his things at auction; if he bought an extra suit at the stores, they would be numbered, and bear the regimental mark—I have known men mark their own clothing, I have done so myself.
HENRY HUGGINS . I am a plumber, of 17, Bedford Row, Bristol—I was formerly a private in the 4th battalion of the King's Royal Rifles—I was at Umballah at the beginning of 1888—Downs was a private in the same regiment—on the night of the murder, about half-past eight, I saw
him in the camp—I did not take particular notice as to how he was dressed, I think he had a Guthrie jacket on, but I am not sure—the next time I saw him was when he staggered into the tent a few minutes after ten—he tried to speak, but could not—I did not then see that his throat was cut—I saw a blow and some blood congealed behind his ear—I assisted in taking him to the hospital, and then saw that his throat was cut—he never spoke in my presence—it was a clean cut wound—the roads from the bazaar to the camp are very dark—I did not know the prisoner.
Cross-examined. The charkee suit would be hid if he had the Guthrie jacket on—I believe I said he had serge trousers, I now remember that he had—they would be black—I am sure he had on a Guthrie jacket, because it was cut clean through right across the front.
CHARLES HENRY FENWICK . I am a Lieutenant in the King's Royal Rifles, now quartered at Winchester—I produce the defaulter sheet of the prisoner during the time he was attached to the regiment. (It was not admitted as evidence.)
CHARLES JAMES GODFREY . I was chief warder at Millbank last year; I have been transferred to Holloway; I was chief warder at Millbank in September last year, while the prisoner was undergoing a sentence of twenty-one days there in the name of George Harris—in consequence of a communication made to me on 28th September, I saw that the prisoner was supplied with writing materials, and on the 28th I went to his cell and asked him if he had finished the statement he was writing—he said yes—he produced it, I noticed that it was not signed, I said, "As you have written it, sign it"—he had previously read it to me all through—he then signed it; this is it—I produced it at the Police-court—I had had no communication with him with regard to it before he had written it—I took it to the Governor of the prison. (Read: "I do confess that on a night early in March, 1888, at Camp, Umballah, East Indies, I did wound, by cutting his throat with a razor, one Private Downs, of the F company 4th Battalion of the King's Royal Rifle Corps, after 9.45 p.m. on that night. I can't give the exact date. I obtained permission to go to the latrine. I went out and secreted myself behind some trees on the main road leading to the military gymnasium, knowing at the same time that one Lance-corporal Bacon, police-corporal of the battalion, would pass that way about ten or eleven at night, and having resolved to do the said corporal an injury, I took a razor in my pocket, and also carried a heavy stick at the same time. Shortly after 10 p.m. I observed a soldier pass along the common. Thinking he was the police-corporal I made a rush at him from behind, and struck him with the stick; he fell senseless to the ground. I then drew the razor across his throat and left him lying on the ground, and I made off, as I heard someone coming. It being dark at the time, and the man not speaking when I struck him, I did not observe but that it was the police-corporal I bad assaulted; nor did I know until after my return to camp who it was. hen I heard, coming in the camp, of the men talking, I listened, and heard that Private Downs, of the F company, had been taken to the hospital with his throat cut. I had no grudge or illfeeling towards Downs, but after the deed was done I kept quiet, not being suspected, as all the talk in the camp was that some natives had
committed the deed of which I now confess. I never told any person of my having been out. Before returning to my tent I took off my clothes and hid them, as well as the razor and stick, in the hollow of a tree in a wood that adjoined the camp. Any person acquainted with the camp could pass in and out on a dark night without being seen by the sentry on duty. I came home to England in March, 1889, and have been wandering about from place to place. This crime seemed to haunt me, and not being able to get any work, as I received a very bad character in the Army, I did not know what I could do. I seriously thought of the grave nature of the offence I had committed. I resolved at last to give myself up to justice and confess. I am very sorry for what I have done by causing the death of an innocent man.")
JOHN CONQUEST (Police Inspector). About nine on the morning of 9th October last I went with Sergeant Ashton to Millbank Prison, and saw the prisoner as he was discharged from there—I said to him, "We are police officers; what is your name?"—he said, M Walter Hassell"—I said, "I am going to arrest you in consequence of this statement, which, I am told, you wrote in this prison; but before you say anything, it is my duty to caution you that whatever you say may be used in evidence against you"—I showed him the statement, and said, "Is this your handwriting?"—he said, "Yes"—I said, "Are you aware of the serious nature of the offence you are accusing yourself of committing?"—he replied, "Yes"—I then read the statement to him—he said, "It is all true; I wrote it myself "—I then asked him to sign it, and he did so in my presence and that of Sergeant Ashton, adding to it, "This statement has been read to me this 9th October, 1890, and I say it is all true, and it was written by me, Walter Hassell"—he was then taken to the station and charged, and then brought before the Magistrate—at this time he was perfectly calm and collected, and appeared thoroughly to appreciate what he was saying and doing—the addition is in my writing; the signsature is his—I said, "Is that right?" and he said, "Yes," and signed it.
A. A. BARNES (Re-examined). Downs bore a most respectable character in the regiment during the time I was there; he was always punctual in every way; he was a sober man, and never late at night, so far as I know.
NOT GUILTY .
MR. GILL Prosecuted.
GUILTY — Ten Years' Penal Servitude.
NEW COURT.—Wednesday, February 11th, 1891.
Before Mr. Recorder.
192. ARTHUR YOUNG (22) PLEADED GUILTY to burglariously breaking and entering the dwelling-house of Samuel Proops, with intent to steal; he was further charged with a conviction of felony, in the name of William Richardson; to this he pleaded NOT GUILTY.
GEORGE TOKER (H R 2). I produce a certificate. (This certified the summary conviction of William Richardson at the Thames Police-court on March 18th, 1890. Sentence fourteen days' imprisonment)—I was present; the prisoner is the man.
Cross-examined by the Prisoner. I am sure of you; I have had many
opportunities of seeing you since you came out in April, up to August, and then I lost sight of you.
Prisoners Defence. He has made a mistake, or else he is telling a lie.
GUILTY— Nine Month' Hard Labour.
193. ROBERT TURNER (44) PLEADED GUILTY to falsifying certain books of the Chelsea Savings Bank, his masters; also to embezzling £35 10s.; also to stealing £200; and within six months £100, and within six months £200; also to stealing £100, £100, and £100; also £250, £100, and £160; also £198 and £100 of his said masters. (MR. C. MATHEWS, for the prosecution, stated that the prisoner's defalcations amounted to £500).— Seven Years' Penal Servitude.
194. ARTHUR CECIL FENTON (31) , To stealing a gun, the goods of Frederick Scarsbrook; also a watch, the property of George Dennis Sampson; also a jacket, the property of Mary Chance; also two miniatures, the property of Isabel Jane Hewitt ; also to obtaining the said articles by false pretences.— [Pleaded guilty: See original trial image.] Judgment respited.
(196) HARRY SMITH (32) , To breaking and entering the Church of St. Peter, at Mile End, and stealing a quantity of clothing and other articles, the goods of Francis Dennis.— Three Days' Imprisonment. [Pleaded guilty: See original trial image.]
MR. KERSHAW Prosecuted.
WILLIAM MEAKINS . I am a carman, of 1, Eden Grove, Holloway—on 17th January I was in the Duke of "Wellington, St. James's Road, Holloway, and came out at 10.30—somebody said, "You will hare Snowball over to-night"—I am known as Snowball—the prisoners were among the men, and Hall hit me on my head with a stick—I was knocked down, and when I got up I missed 11s. from my pocket—I was not insensible, I walked home—I heard Wickenden say, "I have got 11s., I am off," and he kicked me while I was down, and when I got up they were all running away—I saw the 11s. safe at a quarter to ten o'clock—they had tried it on inside the house.
Cross-examined by Hall. You were in the same bar as I was—I was in the public-house ten minutes or a. quarter of an hour—I came out with my friend Jack, the horsekeeper, but I went home by myself—I went about one hundred yards before I was knocked down—I saw you with a stick in your hand, and you came behind me and hit me—I did not see you hit me—you were about one hundred yards from me when I got up—it was dark—I saw you with twelve or fourteen other men, and picked another man out by mistake—I recognised you, because I know you.
Cross-examined by Wickenden. When I came into the station I said, "That is Wickenden"—I did not tell the Magistrate I did not know who robbed me; I was not drunk; I had two bumps on my head next morning—Jack, the horsekeeper, who was with me, got knocked down too—his name is Humphreys—there is always a policeman on point duty at the Wellington, 100 yards off; I did not go back and tell him that I had been knocked down and robbed, because I went home.
Re-examined. I have known Wickenden some time, and knew his voice—Hall had a stick—I did not see him near me when I came out of the public-house—Humphreys came out and went 100 yards with me—he was with me when I was knocked down—I knew Hall by name, and by sight too.
HENRY HARMS . I am barman at the Duke of Wellington, St. James' Road, Holloway—on 17th January I was behind the bar at 10.10 p.m.—Meakins and Humphreys were there, and the two prisoners and two companions of theirs—they came into the little bar first, and I saw them trying a stranger's pocket, and I called the head barman's attention to them—I advised Meakins to go home—he left, and the prisoners followed him, and immediately afterwards I heard he had been robbed.
Cross-examined by Hall. I did not see Meakins robbed, but I know you tried to rob him in our house—you went the same way as he did when you left the house.
Cross-examined by Wickenden. You and Hall surrounded Meakins and tried his pockets—I did not give you in custody because I was watching your little game—the barman tried to prevent you going out so soon, to let Meakins get away, but you followed him not a minute after he left—I walked out and saw that you went in the same direction.
WILLIAM JOHN HUMPHREYS . I am a horsekeeper of 2, Eden Road, Holloway; on 17th January I was at the Duke of Wellington, and left with Meakins; I went with him as far as Eden Grove and then went on home, and he went on his way—I did not see anything happen to him—I did not notice the prisoners at the Duke of Wellington.
Cross-examined by Hall. I did not see you following us, I did not know you before—there were eight or nine there, strangers to me.
By the COURT. I was struck on the head and knocked down before I parted from the prosecutor; the blow bent my hat; I do not know what it was with—as soon as I got up I went away immediately, and do not know what was done to Meakins.
ROBERT ANDERTON (Police Sergeant Y). I took Wickenden on 5th. February, and told him I should charge him with being concerned with James Hall, in custody, in stealing 11s. from a man named Meakins, better know as Snowball, on 17th January—he said, "I know Snowball, but I know nothing of the robbery"—I took him to the station, and Harris and Meakins picked him out.
BENJAMIN GRIFFITHS (F 557). I took Hall on 19th January at 10.15 a.m., and told him it was for beating and robbing Meakins on Saturday, the 17th; he said, "All right, I will go with you, but I was not near the place. "
Hall's statement before the Magistrate: "Between 10 and 10.30 on January I was in the same public-house as the prosecutor; there was a disturbance, and the head barman ordered the lot out. I walked out and went home. I live within 100 yards of the house in Wellington Road. I saw no more of the prisoner till next morning. "
Wickenden's Defence. Everything the prosecutor says is false; he said the horsekeeper was with him when he was knocked down, and he was not. It is an old spite against me; he told me he would level me the first chance he got.
GUILTY .—They then PLEADED GUILTY to previous convictions. Hall
on 23rd May, 1887, of robbery with violence, in the name of frank Hall; and Wickenden on January 7th, 1889, at Middlesex Sessions. Eight convictions were proved against Eau and three against Wickenden.— Seven Years' each Penal Servitude.
MR. ROUTH Prosecuted, and MR. WILMOT Defended.
ALPHONSO MAZZONI (Interpreted). I lire at 82, Warner Street, and am an organ grinder—the prisoner is my brother-in-law—I have not been very friendly with him, but have not quarrelled with him—on 16th January, about 9.30 a.m., I was in the stable at the piano factory putting some strings to my piano, and felt a blow on my head—I turned round and saw the prisoner—I did hot see anything in his hand—I raised my arm to guard my head, and received two or three blows on my arm—I called, "Murder," and a man came and stopped the prisoner, who was still beating me—there was blood on my head and arm, and my arm is still bandaged—a policeman took me to the hospital—we could not find the prisoner.
Cross-examined. I have been in England seven years, and have lived two weeks in the same house as the prisoner—he married my sister about two years ago, and I disapproved of the marriage—I am not very friendly with him, but we had had no quarrel that morning—I was three-parts drunk the night before, but I did hot draw a knife—on this morning I did not see a knife in his hand—I did not wrestle with him, and try to take a stick away from him—I did not spit in his face on this very morning and call his wife a whore or a pittarn—I never saw him at all.
CHARLES JOHNSON . I am an organ-grinder, of 32, Warner Street, Clerkenwell, the same house in which the prosecutor and prisoner live—I was in the piano factory, and saw Mazzoni putting two strings into a piano—I was close against him—the prisoner came in with his hand in his pocket, and I could not see whether he had anything in it, but he struck him three blows; I cannot say what with—I went out of the shed in case I should get a blow myself—I afterwards went with Mazzoni to the hospital.
Cross-examined. The prisoner looked very angry when he came in, but no conversation took place—the blows I saw were on his head—I saw no stick.
DONATO PALITZIANO (Interpreted). I am an organ-grinder, and live in Bath Court—on 16th January, about 9.30 a.m., I was in the stable, and saw the prisoner come in and hit Mazzoni on his head and arm with a stick—I went and parted them—he bled from his head and arm—no conversation took place between them.
Cross-examined. The prisoner did not appear in a great rage—I was there from first to last, but saw no knife used; if one had been used I must have seen it—Mazzoni had a jacket on over his trousers.
EDGAR GEORGE TROUTHECK . I am one of the resident medical officers of the Royal Free Hospital—on 16th January Mazzoni was brought there with two wounds on his scalp, and an incised one on the back of his forearm—I cannot give an opinion how the wounds on his head were done, but that on his arm was done with a sharp instrument, the probe passed in an inch, and the wound was deeper—it was half an inch long—it was
not dangerous, but if it bad gone deeper it might have wounded a large artery, and would have been dangerous to life—I found boles in his coat sleeve and two shirt sleeves corresponding with one another and with the wound, and the shirts were bloody—a good deal of force would be required to inflict it even with a sharp knife.
Cross-examined. The wounds on his head might be the result of one blow—I should expect to find bruises on his arm if he had been hit several times with a stick, but I did not—the wound on his arm could not have been done with a sharp stick.
JOHN ROBINSON (Defective Sergeant G). On 16th January I saw the prosecutor at King's Cross Station; his arm and head were bandaged, he was wearing these two shirts (produced)—I found a quantity of blood on the right sleeves, and a hole through them—he made a statement to me, and on the 21st I saw the prisoner at 12, Fleet Road, Eyre Street Hill, and told him the charge, but as he could not understand me I sent for an interpreter, and the charge was read over to him—he said, "He attacked me with a knife the night before, and I defended myself with a stick next morning, I did not do it with a knife"—he was charged at the station, and said, "I have got some witnesses. "
GUILTY .— Nine Months' Hard Labour.
MR. ELDRIDGE Prosecuted.
MARY MAHONEY . I am a widow, and live at 49, Gunn Street, a lodging-house—on Saturday night, 31st January, the prisoners were there between 9.30 and 10 o'clock, and Margaret asked me for eightpence—I refused to give it to her, and she took me by my hair and dragged me, and while we rolled on the floor the male prisoner took three half-crowns out of my pocket, which I had got to bury my husband with—I said, "Don't take what I have got to see the remains of my husband buried"—he said, "Don't make such a row, or I will put my foot where----"
JOHN MORGAN . I live in this house—I saw the female prisoner with Mrs. Mahoney on the floor—I said, "Have mercy, and let her get up"—she had her by the throat—the male prisoner got me by the throat and tried to throw me, but I threw him—he got up and made a kick at the prosecutrix, and said to me, "John Morgan, it is you who has got me six months; I will turn on you when I come out"—I did not see him take anything from the prosecutrix.
Cross-examined by Walter Tempest. I did not seize you by your neck and try to drag you down when I came into the house.
By the COURT. I heard nothing said about money till I got to the station, and then she complained of having lost three half-crowns.
WALTER ANDREWS (H 272). I took the male prisoner to the station about half-past ten—Mrs. Mahoney complained in his hearing of the loss of three half-crowns; she said that the man held her down while the woman robbed her—he said, "I had nothing to do with it. "
Cross-examined by W. Tempest. I saw nothing in your hand when I took you—you did not throw anything away or give anything to anybody,
but 2s. 9d. in bronze was found on you—nothing was found on the woman, she was taken at the same time at the lodging-house.
NOT GUILTY .
MR. D. J. LEWIS Prosecuted.
ALEXANDER ROBINSON, JUN . I am in partnership with my father as umbrella manufacturers at 14, Aldersgate Street—on Saturday evening, January 31, the warehouse on the third floor was locked up safely—I had seen these umbrellas safe at 12.30 in the day, and missed them on Monday at 9 a.m.—a shutter on the third floor was knocked out, and there was an open space through which a man could get, but the door was not opened—I missed thirty umbrellas and five sunshades, value £7 or £8—I afterwards saw two of the umbrellas at the Police-station, Bethnal Green—the outer door was not open, they must have climbed over the ballusters—we have only four rooms, but there are other people down stairs who lock up—some person must have concealed himself on the stairs, and then he would not have to break the outer door to get in—the ground floor is a tobacconist's shop, which closes at 9 or 10 p.m., when the street door is closed—these two umbrellas are ours; they were safe on January 31st at 12.30, and missed on Monday morning.
JOHN DABBS . I am an umbrella, finisher, in the employ of Messrs. Robinson—on 31st January I locked up the workshops, two rooms, about 1.20 in the day—these two umbrellas were then safe—I gave the key to Mr. Robinson—a board was fastened over the door where there ought to have been glass—on the Monday morning, at nine o'clock, I found the shutter was down—I went in and missed two and a half dozen of umbrellas and five sunshades—these are two of them—Mr. Robinson rents two rooms on the top and two underneath.
FREDERICK HARRISSON . I am assistant to Phillips and Scones, pawnbrokers, of Bethnal Green—on Tuesday, February 3rd, about 7 p.m., the prisoner brought these two umbrellas, and asked for 10s. upon them—I had received a description the night before, and sent for a constable and charged him—he gave his name, George Bell.
Cross-examined. I left the shop—you had time to get away if you liked.
JAMES CHAPPLE (J 344). I was sent for to Messrs. Phillips and Scones, and took the prisoner—these two umbrellas were on the counter—I asked him where he got them—he said, "I bought them last night at the Princess Alice public-house, Commercial Street, and gave two half-crowns each for them. "
SAMUEL LYTHEI . (City Detective Sergeant). On 3rd February I received a telegram at Bethnal Green Police-station, and saw the prisoner in custody—I was accompanied by Robinson and his brother, who identified these two umbrellas—I told the prisoner the charge—he made no reply—I said, "I shall further charge you with receiving the same, knowing them to be stolen"—he said, "I bought them of a man last night at the Princess Alice public-house, Commercial Street"—I said, "Do you know the man or his name?"—he said, "No; I never saw him before; I paid half a
crown each for them"—he gave his address, 43, Commercial Road East—I found 10 1/2 d. on him.
The prisoner, in his defence, said that he bought the umbrellas in the Princess Alice for 5s. each, and, being women's umbrellas, he pawned them, as they were of no use to him.
NOT GUILTY .
THIRD COURT.—Wednesday, February 11th, 1891.
Before Mr. Common Serjeant.
(202) CHARLES HUNT (18) and WILLIAM NOONS (18) , to burglary in the dwelling-house of Arthur Robert Adams, and stealing between £13 and £14— Discharged on recognisances. [Pleaded guilty: See original trial image.] For cases tried in this Court this day see Essex and Surrey cases.
OLD COURT.—Thursday, February 12th, 1891.
Before Mr. Justice Charles.
MR. HUTTON Prosecuted.
GUILTY of an indecent assault — Six Months' Hard Labour.
MR. HUTTON Prosecuted.
GUILTY of an indecent assault — Four Months' Hard Labour.
MR. BIRON Prosecuted.
ROSA FINKLESTEIN (Interpreted). I am the prisoner's wife—I live at 20, King Edward Street—we have been married sixteen years—on 1st February I came home about eight, and found my husband in bed in the room; he had been ill about eighteen weeks from consumption—the smaller children were in the room, the elder ones were in the street—my husband was shouting at me that I had been so long away—I afterwards made him something to eat—after that he got out of bed and dressed himself, took a revolver from under the bed, and fired at me—I had not seen it before—he told me that it cost twelve shillings; he said that at the very moment he approached towards me—he was just close to me when he fired, almost touching—I don't remember his firing more than once—the first shot he fired hit me in the cheek, and then I knew no more; I got into a faint—when I came to myself I was struggling with
him, but how it happened I don't exactly know—I got the pistol front his hand and ran downstairs—my husband understands English very well.
Cross-examined by the Prisoner, I went out at half-past one, and came back after four—you asked me to make something to eat; I did so, and left it on the table and went out; I stayed out till half-past eight, as you were in a bad temper—you shot me first, and then I struggled with you—sometimes we have had words, like man and wife, and afterwards became reconciled.
ABRAHAM COOMBER (Interpreted). I lire at 20, King Edward Street, the prisoner lives in a room above—on 1st February, about eight, I was in my room and heard a noise—I did not know from which room it proceeded—my wife opened the door and listened; I heard children crying—I closed the door—after listening, I heard the children shouting, and knowing the prisoner was ill I ran up to his room, and on opening the door I found a child inside; she caught me by the legs and shouted, "My mother; my mother"—I saw the prisoner shooting twice, and I ran downstairs—the last witness kept him by one hand while he was firing—he and his wife were struggling at the table—directly I heard the shots I ran downstairs and shouted, "Murder!" and "Police!"—I went up again directly, and saw his wife lying on the bed, and the prisoner on his knees holding her by the throat with one hand—I did not say before the Magistrate that he snot at his wife.
ALFRED HOLLAND (E 453). On the evening of 1st February I was on duly in King Edward Street—I heard a cry from No. 20 of "Murder"—I went to the prisoner's room; I saw him there—he said, "I did it; allow me to put on my hat and jacket, and I will go with you "—the bedclothes were all over the room, and there were blood-stains all over the place—the woman was not there; she was downstairs—no one was there but the prisoner when I went in—he was taken to the station and charged.
WALTER BECK (Inspector). This revolver was brought to the station, and handed to me by Inspector Notley—it was charged with five chambers, two of which had been discharged—on the following morning I went back to the room and found on the floor two small bullets, corresponding with those I had removed from the revolver.
FRANK HAYDON (H 371). About a quarter to one on 2nd February I was in charge of the prisoner at Commercial Street Station before he was charged at the Police-court; he was in the cell—he spoke to me through an interpreter—he said, "I did not feel very well, I have not been well for some time, all through my wife neglecting me and the children"—I then cautioned him that anything he might say I might have to give in evidence against him—he then said, "I bought the revolver about a fortnight ago, with which I intended to kill my wife and myself also, as I was sure the children would be better brought up in a ragged school than they were by my wife. "
DAVID HUME . I am a surgeon, of 139, Hanbury Street—on 1st February, about nine, I went to King Edward Street—I there found the prosecutrix sitting in a chair—I examined her; I found a wound on the right cheek, it was a clear cut wound—there was another wound about half an inch long over the left cheek—a bullet such as these would cause such wounds.
The prisoner, in his defence, alleged ill-treatment and neglect on the part of his wife, and that he fired the revolver to frighten her.
GUILTY of unlawfully wounding.
Recommended to mercy by the JURY, in consequence of his state of health end the provocation he received. GUILTY— Six Weeks Without Hard Labour.
MR. WARBURTON Prosecuted, and MR. PAUL TAYLOR Defended.
AUSTIN COPPIN (Y 562). On 5th January, shortly after six in the evening, I was on duty in Hornsey Road—I there met the prisoner's wife with a little boy, John, who was wounded—she made a statement to me—the boy had his throat bandaged—I went with her to 48, Cottenham Road, to search for the prisoner; not finding him there, I went to 69, Grove Road—I inquired for him, and met him at the door—I told him I should take him into custody for cutting his little boy's throat—he replied, "At your service; I will go with you"—at the station he asked me where the boy was; was he at the hospital—on my telling him he was, not there he said, "Poor little fellow; the one I liked best; how I came to do it I can't think; I remember standing over the child by the guard in front of the fire, and my brain seems to have left me; what became of the knife I don't know; I did hear the child say, 'Oh, daddy,' and nothing more; I can't think what made me do it; the devil, I think, for a minute"—he was recovering from the effects of drink—the occurrence took place an hour and half before.
Cross-examined. He seemed a bit stupefied, and sorry for what had taken place.
CHARLES STYLES . I am a medical practitioner, of 71, Hornsey Rise—on 5th January, about a quarter to six, the child was brought to my surgery—he was about five years of age—he had a clean cut wound along the throat about four inches long, and from one-eighth to a quarter of an Inch deep, and there were two small wounds on the first and second lingers of the right hand—they were inflicted by some sharp cutting instrument—the wound in the throat was not a dangerous wound, quite superficial—I saw the boy again on 9th January, and dressed the wound again; it was then nearly healed—I should hardly say that he had been in danger.
Cross-examined. I should say the knife must have been moderately sharp; very little exertion would be necessary—the wound would not be caused by merely dropping the knife from the hand—I think it must have been done from behind, unless the man was left-handed.
Re-examined. I do not see how the wound could have been caused accidentally.
JAMES SMITH (Inspector Y). At 6.40 on the morning of the 5th I was in charge of Hornsey Road Police-station—the prisoner was brought there charged with attempted murder—I told him he would be detained—I then went to the address he gave, 69, Grove Road, and searched the rooms he occupied, two rooms on the second floor—in the front room I found this towel on the carpet smeared with blood—the prisoner was recovering from the effects of drink.
Cross-examined. I have made inquiries as to how he passed that
day—according to his own statement lie went to Madame Tussaud's that afternoon—he said he had been to the Chamber of Horrors there—he had been in the habit of drinking—I believe drink has been his ruin—he had the appearance of being dazed—I believe he was affectionate to the boy except when in drink—there are three other children—the prisoner is a bricklayer.
GUILTY of unlawfully wounding — One Month's Hard Labour.
MR. BURNIE Prosecuted.
CHARLES WHITLOCK (Inspector X). On Sunday evening, 1st January, I was on duty at the Uxbridge Police-station; the prisoner came in at 5.55 p.m., and said he wanted to give himself up for setting fire to a rick of hay in the Green Lanes—I detained him and went to the Green Lanes—I there found a rick belonging to Mr. Foyer; it had been extinguished by himself and several men—I returned to the station and charged the prisoner with setting fire to the rick—he said, "During some time this afternoon I set fire to the rick of hay on the right-hand side of the Green Lanes, and I wish to give myself up for it. "
ALFRED FOYER . About twenty minutes after five, on Sunday evening, 1st February, in consequence of something I was told, I went to a rick of meadow hay belonging to me at the side of the Green Lanes, Uxbridge, in the parish of Hillingdon; it was fair well alight all round on each side—I called for assistance, and with assistance succeeded in putting the fire out—the damage was about £10.
PHILIP FRANCIS GILBERT . I am surgeon of Holloway Prison; I have had the prisoner under my observation since he has been in custody—I have seen no indication of insanity in him—I have no reason to think him other than he is responsible for his actions—he would know the difference between right and wrong, and what he was doing.
The. Prisoner's statement before the Magistrate: "I have been a soldier in the 2nd Queen's, and had a sunstroke in Aden; I have been about four times at asylum? since I came home—I don't know what makes me do it; but there is no resisting the feeling that comes over me; I cannot control it; I have done injury to myself on one or two occasions. "
The Prisoner repeated the same statement in his defence.
GUILTY . He was further charged with having been convicted at this Court on 22nd June, 1885.
WILLIAM TURRELL . I am Sessions warder at Pentonville—I was present at this Court on 22nd June, 1885, when the prisoner was convicted and sentenced to nine months—I produce the certificate of conviction.
GUILTY>.—Turrell also stated that the prisoner had been previously convicted of two like offences— Fifteen Months' Hard Labour.
NEW COURT.—Thursday, February 12th, 1891.
Before Mr. Recorder.
WINSKIP PLEADED GUILTY .
MR. C. MATHEWS and MR. HUNT Prosecuted.
ERNEST FREDERICK JACKSON . I am clerk to John Pullen, a fruit-salesman on commission, in Covent Garden Market—between June and November last he had three clerks, Ward, Winskip and Williamson—Ward was a salesman, and Winskip and Williamson were inferior clerks to him—it was their duty to keep Mr. Pullen's books—there was a commission book kept by Ward generally, and occasionally by Winskip, and a sale book kept entirely by Ward—the ledger was kept by Winskip, and should accurately show the state of the account between the prosecutor and his consignors—the dissecting book was kept by Williamson; it consisted of entries of the quantity and quality of the goods received, with the initials of the consignor—the ledger would be posted from the commission and the sale book—blue sheets were made up daily by Winskip, and forwarded to the consignor every evening, naming the quantity consigned and the quantity sold—either Winskip or Williamson would post them to the consignor—it was Winskip's duty to make out weekly sheets which summarised the blue sheets, and gave the position of the account at the end of the week, and it was Ward's duty to check them—those weekly sheets would be brought to Williamson to bring to Mr. Pullen or to me, and on the faith of that cheques would be drawn and handed to Williamson—it was no part of my duty to check the weekly sheets with the books, that was Ward's duty—it was not Pullen's custom to check them, he always relied on Ward—Mr. Pullen was away ill from August 23rd to October, 1890, and the weekly sheets were sent to his house, sometimes by me and sometimes by Williamson, and he would rely on them and draw his cheques—I have examined the books carefully, and produce a summary of names and amounts for which cheques have been drawn for matters which do not appear in the books—I have had the counterfoils of the cheque books, and the business books, and find that from 19th July to 25th October, 1890, forty-six cheques were drawn; and paid by being passed through his account; for £300, for which there is no entry in the books—I produce twenty-three of the forty-six cheques of which I have the counterfoils; one is to the order of J. Preaux, on 22nd September, for £7 16s. 4d.: he is a grower at Guernsey, and a consignor—nothing was owing to him at that date—that was presented with the usual weekly white sheet, and I believed that that was owing to Mr. Pullen when I took him that cheque—it has passed through the Capital and Counties Bank, Oxford Street Branch, and is endorsed "J. Preaux" in the prisoner's writing—he had no authority to endorse cheques—it was never brought to my knowledge that he was endorsing cheques of my master's—this cheque of September 27th for £7 19s. in favour of P. Gerrard is crossed to the Tottenham Court Road Branch of the City Bank—P. Gerrard is a grower at Guernsey—that money was not owing to him—this is endorsed "N.
Gerrard "—I do not speak positively to the writing, but it is similar to Williamson's—I have gone through these twenty-two cheques; most of the endorsements are similar to Williamson's, but I speak positively as to Preaux's cheque—a number of the cheques are drawn to a consignor named Peter Mauger; nothing was owing to him at the time they were drawn, and they do not represent genuine debts.
PETER GERRARD . I am a grower at Catsell, in Guernsey—I have been in the habit of consigning goods to Mr. Pullen, in Covent Garden, and he remitted the proceeds by cheque—I did not receive a cheque from him on August 18th for £6 14s. 2d.; no such sum was due to me—I did not receive a cheque for £7 19s. on September 22nd, nothing was owing to me; or one for £8 0s. 3d. on October 1st, nothing was due; nor one for £6 19s. 10d. on 11th October; nothing was due—this is not my endorsement to this cheque of 22nd September—I never saw it, and never received any daily sheets which represent that sum.
JOHN MITCHELL PARSONS . I keep the Rose and Crown, 47, Broad Street, Bloomsbury—about fourteen months ago I made the acquaintance of a man named Bryant, who lived in two rooms in a coffee-house two doors from my place—he used to come in as a customer—he was in employment, but left it after six months, and became a betting man—I made Winskip's acquaintance about May last—he came as a customer—he was employed at Mr. Pullen's, and his brother used to dine with me—he occasionally came with Bryant—I knew Williamson by the name of Given van—he was employed by Mr. Pullen; he came with Winskip—"Ward came there twice; he was employed by Mr. Pullen—I have never seen Bryant since Saturday, November 8—between July and November 8 he used to bring cheques for me to cash—I bank at the Capital and Counties, Oxford Street Branch—I paid the cheques in there and paid one or two to the distillers—Bryant told me he was doing business in the market with persons whom he took these cheques from—for the first three months he asked me to pass the cheques through my bank, as he had no banking account, and I always found them correct—none of them were payable to him—I noticed that they were endorsed—I did not always take them myself; my manager took them sometimes—he is here—I noticed that the endorsements were not the same on each cheque, and asked him the reason—he told me that he had the cheques from people in the market—I had a visit from Mr. Pullen—he told me how he was being robbed by his servants, and I brought these two cheques down and showed them to him; he used some very strong language, and told me to keep them—I told him I could not pay him—he said, "Give me the cheques, and I will get information about them"—I gave them to him the next day—I got nothing by them; it was done innocently—I did not know that this was going on, and I have some one in Court to prove I was innocent—I do not know whose writing this cheque (produced) is, but I am familiar with the writings-Bryant always came alone.
Cross-examined. I never saw you signing cheques in company with Bryant, and I never saw Bryant sign them—he always handed them to me.
in July, Ward, Winskip, and Williamson. (The RECORDER read his notes of Jackson's evidence to the witness, to which he assented, and added)—these cheques were brought to me from 23rd August to October, when I was ill, and I signed them—I relied entirely on my clerks, and believed they were genuine cheques in payment for goods received, and which appeared in my accounts—on the 25th October (Saturday) I told Ward he had better resign; he came once after that for payment of the balance due to him, and I have not seen him since—on the 15th December I returned to London and examined my ledger; Winskip wag outside and saw me examining it—I found mistakes in it, and went out to see Winskip, and he was gone—Williamson did not appear that day, he only came back on the day I took him to Bow Street—I had not discharged him.
Cross-examined. When I engaged you two and a-half years ago I told you that you could leave at a minute's notice, or I would give you a minute's notice—the dissecting book was for goods sold only, not for goods sent in—I have not been through it.
HENRY MARSHALL (Police Inspector E.) On the 8th January Mr. Pullen brought Williamson to my office in Bow Street, and said, "This is Williamson"—I said, "I am Inspector Marshall"—he said, "I hear that I am wanted, and thought it best to give myself up"—I said, "Yes, there is a warrant charging you, with Winskip and Ward, with fraud, and conspiring to defraud Mr. Pullen, your late employer"—he said, "I admit being in it with Winskip, but not with Ward, and I don't know that he had anything to do with it; he did not with me; Winskip used to give me cheques, and I endorsed them and gave them to Bryant, the cashier"—he was then charged—there is a warrant out against Ward; we have used every effort to execute it, but I believe he has left the country—Bryant has absconded too.
Cross-examined. I wrote your statement down a quarter of an hour afterwards, as soon as I had put you in the dock, and after you had gone out of my room—I never read it over to you.
Williamson's Defence. These cheques were handed to me all endorsed by Bryant; here are two which he endorsed in my presence; I have been made a tool of; the endorsements are not mine, they are Bryant's.
GUILTY.—Recommended to mercy by the JURY on account of his youth, and believing him to have been made a tool of. — Eighteen Months' Hard Labour each.
THIRD COURT.—Thursday, February 12th, 1891.
Before Mr. Common Serjeant.
209. JOHN FREDERICK PODSZUS (35) PLEADED GUILTY to two indictments for publishing false and defamatory libels, and withdrew his pleas of justification.— Discharged on recognisances , and to pay the costs agreed at £50.
MR. LYON Prosecuted.
away—they turned down Compton Street; I ran after them, blowing my whistle—the prisoner was brought to me by a constable, the other two ran away—I went back to Judd Street, and saw that the plate-glass window of 63, Judd Street, a tobacconist's shop, was broken—there was no shutter—I saw some cigars had been taken from the window—the prisoner was taken to the station and charged; he said, "There were three of us; they had the smokes, and I ran with them"—smokes is a term for cigars.
Cross-examined by the Prisoner. I did not see you with any of the cigars—the other men were some distance in front of me.
By the COURT. I could not swear to the prisoner, I only saw his back.
JOHN BONDE (E 477). On this night I was in Hunter Street—I heard the smashing of glass about a quarter to two—I saw three men run to the corner of Compton Street—I gave chase, and apprehended the prisoner in Gray's Inn Road—I saw his face under a lamp at the corner of Compton Street, where he made a bit of a halt—somebody called, "Stop thief;" and he was stopped by a private person—I claimed him as soon as he fell to the ground—I said, "What aid you break that glass for?"—he said, "I did not break it"—I took him back to the other officer—at the station, in answer to the charge, he said he did not take the cigars, but he ran with the men.
Cross-examined. I did not see you with the cigars—I saw you about forty yards from the broken window.
GEORGE HENRY TURNER , I live at 63, Judd Street, and am the prosecutor—I live on the top floor of these premises—on the night of 2nd February I left everything safe in my house at 11.20, and between one and two next morning I was aroused by the police—I found my window broken, and missed 200 cigars in four boxes, which I value at 37s.—these are two of the boxes—the cigars were inside the window; some close to the glass; they could be seen from outside; the boxes were open—the breakage of the window was about a yard square; a man could put his head and shoulders through.
JOE WEBB (E 117). On 3rd February, about two a.m., from information received I went to Regent Square—I found in an enclosure about 150 yards from the broken window this cigar-box lying; on its side, with cigars scattered about—I gathered them together, and took them to the station.
JOHN BONDS (Re-examined by the COURT). The three men ran from Compton Street to Regent Square—the prisoner by himself ran down towards St. Peter's Church, where the other box was found, and down to the Gray's Inn Road—I am certain that one of the boxes was found where he only ran.
The Prisoner, in his statement before the Magistrate, said that two men whom he met in the lodging-house asked him to go with them and stand at the corner, and they would give him one shilling, as they had broken a window, and taken two boxes, and they wanted two others; that he went with them, and stood at the corner while each of the two men
pulled out a box of cigars, that some broken glass came out with the second one, and that then they all ran away.
The Prisoner, in his defence, said he did not break the glass or touch the agars, but that he saw two men in the Tottenham Court Road, who asked him to go with them, and they would give him a shilling; that hi went; the men turned up a corner; that he heard a lot of running, and ran away.
Two witnesses spoke to the prisoner's good character.— Judgment respited.
MR. WATTS Prosecuted, and MR. PURCELL Defended King.
FREDERICK FRANZ . I live at 25, Newcastle Street, Strand, and am a cook at the Savoy Hotel—about twenty minutes to twelve on the early morning of 20th January I left the Savoy Hotel, and went into the Cleopatra's Needle public house, Herbert Passage—I came out of there about ten minutes past twelve with a friend; a woman selling matches accosted us; my friend bought a box of matches, and said "Good-night" to me—I went round the corner; the woman followed me, and when I got to the corner of Beaufort Buildings I turned and gave her a penny to get rid of her—while giving her a penny I was attacked from behind by three men, one of whom was Thompson—they knocked me down and knelt on my chest, and Thompson tore my watch-chain away—I had on two watches, which I protected, and prevented them taking; he punched and kicked me, and the other two also punched me, and took £1 10s. in gold, 7s. 6d. silver, and 2d. out of my pocket—I don't see either of the other two men in Court—I called out "Police!" and policemen came up—the two men other than Thompson called out, "Look out, here is a copper" and then they made off—Thompson tried to get away, but I stuck to him till the constable came up and took him into custody—he was taken to the station and charged—I was a good deal hurt; I did not lie up, but I thought for a few days that the bridge of my nose was broken, it turned black, and was swollen; it is not broken—I did not have a doctor, I went to business next day.
Cross-examined by Thompson. I had marks of violence on my face where you punched me on the bridge of my nose—you kicked me—you got off me to try and get away; I caught hold of you, and you kicked me; the kick did not hurt me—I detained you till the constable came—I did not say as you were coming out of a public-house, "I believe you are one of the men that has robbed me"—I did not strike you at the side of the head—I said you took the watch-chain and gave it to some-one else; you did not take my money—you would have treated me with more violence if I had let you—you made no attempt to move away, because two constables came up—I was not intoxicated.
Cross-examined by MR. PURCELL. I was robbed in the street leading to the Strand entrance of the Savoy Hotel—as soon as one man called out, "Here is a copper, "the two men ran, one of them towards the Strand—I was shown King among others, and failed to recognise him—I saw the man on my left hand side, but not the other one, for my head was twisted.
January I was on duty in Carting Lane with another constable—I heard cries of "Murder!" and "Police!" from the direction of Herbert Passage—I ran there with the other constable, and saw the prosecutor lying on the ground, and the prisoner leaning over him—King and the other man were standing there—some one called out, "Look out, here is a copper "—I took the prisoner into custody—Xing and the other man ran away—on Saturday, 24th January, I went to Bow Street station, where I saw King, and identified him from among about eight others as one of the two men who ran away—I was present when he was charged—I have no doubt that he was one of the men; I knew him before—Thompson was searched; nothing relating to the charge was found on him.
Cross-examined by Thompson. You made no attempt to run away when I came up, because you had not the chance—you said at the Policestation that the prosecutor assaulted you first when you were coming out of the public-house.
Cross-examined by MR. PURCELL. Herbert Passage is outside a public-house, and is one of the most brilliantly lighted spots in London; Carting Lane is not magnificently lit up—I was 80 or 100 yards from the place from which the cries came—I tried to run up without making a noise—the other constable was in uniform—we got within twenty or thirty yards before they could see us—the two men running off were not more than two seconds under my observation—I had seen King before—I did not let the other officer know that I knew King before—I gave a description of the two men before seeing King at the station; I gave no description of his complexion—this is the description I gave the same night: "First, age 25, height 5ft. 7 in. or 8 in., full round face, fair moustache; dress, dark clothes, long black overcoat, hard felt hat; the other, age 27, height 5 ft. 8 in., light moustache, hard felt hat, dark overcoat"—I had a good opportunity of seeing their faces—I am positive that the prisoner is one of the two men concerned in the robbery.
WILLIAM AVIS (E R 34). I was with Greenwood on this night—we heard cries of "Police!" and ran into Herbert Passage and Beaufort Buildings—I saw the prosecutor on the ground, and there were three men, of whom the prisoners are two—Thompson was standing over him, and he had hold of him by the throat, and was punching him in the face and kicking him in the stomach with the heel of his foot—the other two men ran away immediately on seeing us—Greenwood seized Thompson—I identify King as one of the two men who ran away; as I turned the corner he appeared to be rising from of the prosecutor.
Cross-examined by MR. PURCELL. Greenwood was in front of me—the two men were under our observation about a couple of seconds—I had not gone many yards up the court before they had gone—I swear King is one of the men; I have no doubt—I saw him brought into the station, and recognised him directly—I said at the Police-court, "King, to the best of my belief, is one of the two men," on account of the question asked me; I had no doubt about him.
Re-examined. When Nichols brought King into the station I asked if it was for this charge.
ALFRED NICHOLS (Detective L). I took King into custody on the 26th in the Hereford public-house, Cornwall Road—I said, "I shall take you into custody on suspicion of being concerned in a robbery that took place in the Strand on the night of the 19th inst. "—he said, "All right, sir,
don't catch hold of me; I will go quiet "—on the way to the station he said, "This is what you get mixing up with bad pals; if I get out of this I will have nothing more to do with them"—Avis was in Bow Street Station when I took the prisoner in, and he asked me if I brought him in for a robbery in the Strand; I said, "Yes"—I was there when Greenwood identified him.
Cross-examined by MR. PURCELL. I had not spoken to Avis or Greenwood before I arrested King; I arrested him from what I saw in the information—King lives in my division; I know the address he gave—his father is a very respectable man; a painter and decorator, I believe—he lives about 300 yards from the Hereford public-house.
Witnesses for the Defence.
ISABEL DENVER . My husband keeps the Cornwall Arms, Cornwall Road, Stamford Street—I know King and his father; they live in the neighbourhood—my husband is ill in bed; I did not know about King being locked up till the father came and told my husband, on the Wednesday, I think—on the Monday evening, 19th January, I saw the prisoner King with a young woman, who is here to-day, in our private bar from five minutes to twelve till closing time, half-past twelve—the young woman came into my house last night with a shawl over her head as she had when she was with the prisoner, and I knew her directly—on the evening King and she came in I was speaking about needlework; we were very quiet that evening—the Strand is about a quarter of an hour's walk from our house I should think; you would go over Waterloo Bridge.
Cross-examined. I think it was the Wednesday after King was taken that his father came—my husband went to see King at Holloway, and knew him well then; he could not call him to mind at first—a lady spoke to me about needlework on that Monday; I don't often speak about it.
Re-examined. My husband went to Holloway to make certain it was the prisoner; we know customers by sight, not by name.
NELLY CLIFTON . I live at 39, Princes Street, Stamford Street—I know the prisoner—a young fellow told me he was locked up on Saturday—on the Monday before that Saturday, I met him at Murphy's in the Cornwall Road at half-past ten—we went to the York Hotel, and then to Denver's—we got there at five minutes to twelve, and stayed till half-past twelve—he was in my company all that time—when we came out we went to a coffee stall at the top of Stamford Street, and I was with him till half-past one—he was with me from half-past eleven till half-past one.
Cross-examined. I was told on the Saturday that the robbery happened on that night—I am not in the habit of going about with young men to public-houses—I noticed the exact time we went to Denver's; I looked up and saw it was five minutes to twelve—we went into the end bar—I saw Mrs. Denyer there, and Mr. Denyer served us—a female was in the same bar, talking to Mrs. Denyer about some needlework.
Re-examined. I should know the time at half-past twelve, because they turned us out then.
The prisoner received a good character.
THOMPSON in his defence said that he was in a public-house, when the prosecutor said he believed he was one of the men that had robbed him and struck him, and that then they fought, but that he knew nothing of the robbery.
KING— NOT GUILTY .
THOMPSON— GUILTY .— Fifteen Months'Hard Labour.
MESSES. F. FULTON and H. AVOEY Prosecuted. During the evidence of the first witness the prisoner stated, in the hearing of the Jury, that he desired to withdraw his plea, and
GUILTY.— Judgment respited.
NOT GUILTY .
OLD COURT.—Friday, February 13th, 1891.
Before Mr. Justice Charles,
214. JOHN HALL was indicted for that he, being employed and acting in an office of public trust, as overseer for the Parish of St. Mary, Whitechapel, unlawfully and corruptly did omit from the list of registered voters the name of Stanley Mockett, knowing him to be a duly qualified elector; in Other Counts he was charged with inserting in the said list the names of persons not qualified; and in Two Other Counts for attempting to prevent the course of justice.
MR. ASQUITH moved to quash the indictment, on the ground that it disclosed no indictable offence. The duty of preparing the register of voters was cast upon overseers by the Reform Act of 1832, 2nd William IV., c. 45, and sections 37 to 57 particularised their duties. The Registration Act of 1843 (4th Vic, c. 18) having repealed those sections, and by sections 10, 11, and 12 of the Registration Act provided for the proper discharge of the duties imposed on overseers; by section 57 specified that the mode of proceeding against them in case of neglect of such duties should be by fine or civil action, and not by indictment. In support of that proposition he referred to Hawkins' Pleas of the Crown, 4th vol., hook 2, c. 25, see. 4; Rex v. Wright, 1st Burrows, p. 143; The Queen v. Boyall, 2nd Burrows, p. 832; Rex v. Gregory, 5 Barnwell and Adolphus, p. 555; Couch v. 'Steele, 3 Ellis and Blackburn, p. 402; Atkinson v. The Gateshead Waterworks Company; and Stevens v. Jencock,11 Q. B. and 2nd Exchequer Division.
MR. WHITE was heard on the same side.
MR. MATHEWS, in support of the indictment, contended that all the Counts were good. The first fifteen related to the alleged misconduct by the defendant, the other two charged a falsification of the evidence to be used before the Revising Barrister; he submitted that the breach of a statutory duty by a public officer was indictable at Common Law, unless a penalty was annexed in the clause creating the offence, which was not the case in the section under which the defendant was indicted; it was by a separate and substantive section, and the remedy provided was either cumulative or alternative, a procedure by recovery or by indictment, so that where no penalty was annexed the remedy was by indictment
Cases cited: Rex v. Jones, 2nd Strange, p. 1145; Reg. v. Price, 11 Adolphus and Ellis, p. HI; Rex. v. Davies, Sayers' Reports, p. 163; Rex v. Wright, 1 Burrows, p. 543; Ay. v. Buchanan, 8 Q. B. 883; Rex v. Robinson, 2nd Burrows, p. 800; Rex v. Harris, 4 Term Reports, p. 202; Reg. v. Vreones; Rex v. Bembridge, Douglas, p. 227; Rex v. Holland, 5 Term Reports,607; Rex v. Winship, Calderwood, p. 72; Rex v. Cumming, 5 Moody, p. 179, and Rex v. Quin, 1 Strange.
MR. ASQUITH having replied,
MR. JUSTICE CHARLES took time for consideration, and on the following Thursday, in giving judgment, said: The principle which governed cases of this description could not be better stated than in Hawkins Pleas of the Crown, Book 2, c. 25, sec. 4, and guided by the principle there laid down, it became necessary to inquire: First, whether this was a statutory offence; and secondly, whether the Statute creating the offence had prescribed a particular remedy in such terms as to exclude, either expressly or by implication, a remedy by indictment. Upon the first point there could be no room for doubt or controversy. All the offences charged against the defendant were imposed, not by the Common Law, but by the Registration Act of 1843. No doubt some of the sections of the Reform Act were repealed, but the 76th section had not been; and, it was urged, but for that section, an overseer in the lapse of the eleven years between 1832 and 1843, would be indictable, because where a duty was created by statute and no remedy was provided, he would be indictable; but that 76th section expressly provided that a Jury might award any sum not exceeding £500, and that proviso excluded the notion of indictment. The duty created by the 13th section of the Act of 1843 was, in fact, a new duty, or a newly-created duty, and for a breach of that duty a specific penalty was enacted by way of fine. From a careful consideration of all the sections, the conclusion he had arrived at was that this was a case in which the specific remedy provided by sections 51 and 97 existed, which otherwise would be by indictment; but that indictment was manifestly excluded by the statute itself. The learned Judge then exhaustively went through the various authorities cited, and was of opinion that, properly examined, they supported the conclusion at which he had arrived, and therefore the indictment must be Quashed.
MARY ANN FIELD . I live at 8, Mercer Street, Shadwell—the prisoner is my daughter—she was 15 last October—on 15th January, soon after 1 p.m., I was ill, sitting in a chair by the fire—I gave the prisoner 1 1/2 d. and sent her to fetch me some porter from the public-house; she took a clean mug from the cupboard with her—she was a long time gone—she could have gone to the Crooked Billet and got it and come back in five minutes if she was not long being served—she brought back the beer in the mug and placed it by the side of the fire to get warm—I said, "Susan, you have been gone a long time, the beer is quite dead"—it was very flat and dead—she said she had met a lady named Mrs. Kenny, a neighbour, who wished me well—I took the beer in my hand and took a small drop in my mouth; it had a nasty taste—I said, "Susan, this has got a nasty taste, I don't like it"; she said, "It is your medicine"—I had been taking medicine all through the winter—I threw the beer into a pail in which there was some dirty water—I then noticed at. the bottom of the mug about a small teaspoonful of green grits—I
said they had no business to serve me with beer with such stuff at the bottom, and I told her to take it back to where she got it—she took it back and returned with the mug in the same state as when she took it, and she said the barman told her she must have been dropping some matches in it in taking it home—she then washed out the mug and threw the contents of it in the pail where I had thrown the porter—nearly half an hour after there was a knock at the door;—the prisoner was eating her dinner with my other girls in the meantime—the prisoner looked out at the window, and then went downstairs to open the door—I live on the first floor, and I could hear the person who had come, Mrs. Turner, ask the prisoner if she could see her mother—I did not know the woman; I said, "What have you done, Susan? what is the matter with all this crowd round the door?"—there were a lot of children round the door—Mrs. Turner then accused the prisoner of putting this in the beer—the prisoner said, "No, I have not done so, you don't mean me"—she said, "Yes, I do"—she said she would not do it to a stranger, much less to her mother—I told her to come upstairs and shut the door, and she came up—afterwards another neighbour, who had lent her a penny, came to the door, and the prisoner ran away—she was afterwards brought hack by the inspector, and then I told her to be a good girl and to answer the inspector's questions—she made no reply—I did not tell the prisoner to go to Mrs. Roffey on this day and borrow a penny—I knew nothing about it till this matter came up—I had kept her at home, except for one or two little places that she has gone to.
WILLIAM PENBERTHY . I am a registered medical practitioner—I saw Alice Roffey, the wife of a carman, at 16, Mercer Street, Shad well, this morning—I have attended her as a medical man; she is too ill, in my opinion, to come here and give evidence.
The deposition of Alice Roffey was read, as follows:—"I am the wife of Frank Roffey, a carman, at 16, Mercer Street, Shad well, next door to Mrs. Field. On Thursday, 15th January, the prisoner came to me between 1.10 and 1.16, and said, 'Please, Mrs. Roffey, will you lend mother a penny till to-morrow, and then she will send it on,' and thereupon I lent her a penny. "
GEORGE TITMASS . I live at the Crooked Billet public-house, King David Lane, and am barman there—on 15th January, about a quarter past one p.m., the prisoner came in—I have seen her a good many times Wore—I served her with a pint of porter, and she paid three halfpence for it—it was drawn from the ordinary beer-engine, and had froth on the top when I handed it to her—five or ten minutes afterwards she came back; there was a little drop of beer at the bottom of the mug then—she gave it to me, and said, "Look what is in the beer"—I saw there was a lot of stuff in it, and said, "This was not in the beer"—I smelt it and said, "It is phosphorus"—I told her she must have been dropping some matches in it—she said nothing—I drew the attention of one of the customers to it, and gave her the mug back, and she took it away—I drew a glass from each of the two taps we have for porter to show her it was quite clear.
the oil and colour-shop, which my husband keeps there—between one and half-past one, on Thursday, 15th January, the prisoner came in to buy a pennyworth of rat-poison—I did not know her before then—I next saw her at the Police-station, and recognised her the same evening; she was there by herself—when she asked for rat-poison, I said, "You mean phosphor paste"—she said, "Yes"—I served her with it; she paid a penny; and asked me to draw the cork for her—I did so and warned her to be careful, as it was poisonous—I think she said, "Yes"—the bottle had a white label, "James's Phosphor Paste," and directions for use, and "poison. "
ANNIE MILES . I live at 23, Drew's Buildings, Shadwell, with my father and mother; I go to Sunday-school—on Thursday, 15th January, I met the prisoner opposite Saunders' swectstuff-shop, I only knew her by sight—she was carrying bacon and this jug with beer in it—she asked me to hold the jug—I did so—she had a bottle in her hand, and she twice took some blue stuff out of it with a hairpin and put into the beer—then she stirred it up a little with the hairpin—she threw the bottle in the gutter, I picked it up and smelt it; it smelt very nasty, and I threw it down again where I had picked it up from—she went a little further on and stood the jug on a window-ledge, and stirred it up a second time—I went home and told my mother, who said something to me, and then I went back to the place where the bottle had been thrown away, picked it up, and took it to my mother—this is it—afterwards I heard a conversation between my mother and Mrs. Turner.
ELIZA TURNER . I live at 24, Drew's Buildings, Shadwell—at twenty minutes past one on Thursday, 15th January, Annie Miles and her mother brought me this bottle of phosphor paste; the mother gave it to me—I went with Mrs. Miles to Mrs. Field's house—the prisoner was there—I asked her if she had fetched her mother some beer from the Crooked Billet—she said, "Yes"—I showed her the bottle, and asked her if she had fetched the beer, and accused her of putting the phosphor paste in it, and told her it would kill her mother if she drank it—she denied she had done it; she said, "Oh no, mum, I would not do such a thing to a stranger, let alone my own mother"—I went to the Police-station and gave the bottle to Inspector Quinn—this is it.
ROBERT MORTON . I am an assistant, with one qualification, to Dr. Heatley—on the 15th January I received this bottle from Inspector Quinn—it had on it, as it has now, "T. James's Phosphor Paste"—I handed it to Dr. Heatley.
ROBERT HEATLEY . I am a registered medical practitioner at 29, King David Lane, Shadwell—I received from Mr. Morton this bottle—I examined its contents—apart from analysis I came to the conclusion that it contained phosphorus—it is a poisonous substance—a grain or 1 1/2 grains of phosphorus is sufficient to cause death—there would be 4 or 5 grains in this bottle, sufficient to destroy life—assuming the bottle to have been full, a quantity representing about 1 1/2 grains of phosphorus has been taken out—it would have a greater effect on a delicate person—I examined a larger bottle. (MR. FULTON stated this had in it the contents of the pail.)—there was a trace of phosphorus in that.
JOHN QUINN (Re-examined). About 2 o'clock on the 15th January I was on duty at Shadwell Police-station, when Mrs. Miles and her little girl came there—in consequence of what they said I went to 8, Mercer
Street, and saw Mrs. Field—the prisoner was out—I afterwards met her in Gable Street, the next street—I asked her if she was Susan Field; she said, "Yes"—she said she had been down to Watney Street on an errand, and also to Brook Street to see an old lady—I said she would have to go to the station with me—she asked to see her mother first—I took her to her mother—I asked her if she knew why I was there; she made no reply—I said, "lam told you put some phosphor paste in some beer for your mother, and stirred it up with a hairpin"—she made no reply, but began to cry—she was taken to the station and charged with administering poison with intent to murder—she made no reply; she was asked if she understood, she said, "Yes"—afterwards I went back to Mercer Street, and received this mug and this pail—at the bottom of it was some liquid which was poured into a bottle and given to the doctor—I afterwards received this little bottle from Mrs. Turner, and I have produced it here to-day—the sister of the prisoner took me to the house of Kate, who is here,
JAMES ALDER (H 377). Before the girl was charged, on the 15th January, she was left in the charge-room in my custody, and she made a voluntary statement to me, which I took down in writing twenty minutes afterwards—she said, "It is all through the girl Kate"—I said it was a very serious charge, and what she said I had made a note of, and it might be used against her—after that she said, "I met a girl that I knew, by the name of Kate. She asked me how my mother was getting on; I told her she was very poorly. She then told me to go to an oilshop and buy a penny bottle of blue stuff labelled poison, and mix it with the beer and give it to my mother, and that would do her good"—that was all she said there—she said she did not know Kate's surname; we afterwards found out by making inquiries.
KATE DUDLEY . I was at the Thames Police-court when this charge was heard; I was directed to be there—I am single, and live at 83, Lucas Street, St. George's East—I know the prisoner by sight—I live about three turnings off Mrs. Field—the prisoner is in the habit of saying, "Good morning, Kate," when she meets me—she has never had any conversation with me about her mother or beer, or putting phosphor paste in it, or anything of the kind—I met her one evening, and she asked me if I would go to chapel with her—I did not see her on the Thursday—I never said anything to her about buying phosphor paste and putting it in the beer—I do not know her mother.
Cross-examined by the prisoner. I never mentioned such a thing to you as putting stuff in the beer, or anything about poison—I could not say when you asked me to go to chapel—I don't know if it was that night or not.
By the JURY. I have told the prisoner I was going to get married; but not that she might come and live with me.
By the COURT. I was not opposite Frost's with her on this day. (The prisoner's statement was here read, as follows: " This young woman was with me when I got this stuff; she was opposite Frost's. I got the stuff; when I came out she came along with me, and went over to a lodging-house. I had this little child to hold it; after I put it in the little girl walked away; I threw the bottle away; the child picked it up. Kate asked how much I put in; I showed her. She said, If your mother notices it say you don't know what it is; if your mother does not notice
it say nothing about it'")—I never said such a thing to the girl about it—I did not go to the lodging-house with her—I did not hold the mug—all that statement is untrue—her mother is a stranger to me; I only know her by seeing her at the Court and here. (The conclusion of the prisoner's statement was read, as follows:—"If she sends you to the public-house, say the young man says it is stuff round the pots; if it comes to the Court, say nothing about it, in case it should come to my young man's ears, as I should be ashamed when I see him in case it prevents our getting married. If anything happens to your mother we will get work; when I get married I will give you so much a week")—I live at a lodging-house with my mother and sister.
The Prisoner's Defence: I wish the young woman would own to it; she knows it is the truth.
GUILTY .— Three Months' Hard Labour.
THIRD COURT.—Friday, February 13th, 1891.
Before Mr. Common Serjeant.
MR. COHEN and MR. FIRMINGER Prosecuted, and MR. FILLAN Defended.
FRANK THOMAS . I reside at Stroud Green—I am the secretary of the Industrial Benefit Building Society—Arthur Alfred Noss is a shareholder—on 21st December I posted this cheque to him at his address, 145, Stroud Green Road—I put the cheque in the envelope, and posted the letter—it was not registered—a similar circular to this was enclosed with it. (The cheque was dated December 18th, 1890, on the London and County Bank, for £5 0s. 3d., and signed by three directors of the Building Society, and endorsed "A. A. Noss" and "T. J. Bugg") the three signatures are those of. directors—in consequence of receiving no acknowledgment I wrote to his father, who saw me—the cheque was folded in the circular in which the amount is stated in the blank left for it—the cheque was paid through my bank.
Cross-examined. I had not received notice of Mr. Noss's change of address—I sent out about seventeen or eighteen circulars with cheques, certainly under twenty—I address the envelopes from memory, and refer where I have a doubt—Noss had been a customer about ten years—he had lived at the same address—I write him some years half-a-dozen times, sometimes not at all—I had a slight doubt, and referred to one of Noss's letters for the address to see if I had the exact number—I keep all letters in a box-file—I had had no letter from Noss within six months—I am certain I put No. 145, the same as on the letter—I had not written to him for perhaps a year—I was not certain of another address, and as I had the box-file I referred to it—I am a clerk in the Central Meat Market—I have not charged for the stamps, I shall do so at the end of the year in my petty account.
FREDERICK STEELE . I am assistant to Mr. Piper, 202, Kentish Town Road—I know the prisoner by sight—I have seen him as a customer once, and several times in the street—on 22nd December he came with a lady and perambulator and one or two children—I served him with a
pair of eights boots at 15s., and a pair for the lady at 18s. 6d.—I asked if I should send them home; he said, "No, it is too far"—he handed me this cheque for £5 0s. 3d., which I save Mr. Piper, who said, "I suppose this is all right?"—the prisoner said, "Yes, I wish it was for £500 instead of £5"—Mr. Piper said, "Is this your name on the back?"—he said, "Yes"—Mr. Piper then changed the cheque, deducting for the boots—he came in again, I think, on 24th December, in the evening—on 16th January I was sent to the post-office, and identified the prisoner there from others.
Cross-examined. I have seen the prisoner at meal-times—I did not particularly notice him—I presumed the lady was his wife—I conversed with the detective about the case—I had served the lady before—I could not forget the prisoner's face—when he came in the shop I recognised the face I had seen; the second time he called Mr. Piper had a long conversation with him—Mr. Piper had two conversations with him—I do not stick to an opinion unless I am opposed; if convinced, I acknowledge it.
ALFRED PIPER . I am a bootmaker, of 202, Kentish Town Road—on 22nd December Steele spoke to me about this cheque, about 9.30—I asked the prisoner if his name was Noss—he said, "Yes," and wished it was for £500 instead of £5—I am as sure as one can be that he is the man, because I saw him again on Christmas Eve—I gave him the balance of the £5 0s. 3d. after deducting for the boots—I paid the cheque to Mr. Muller, my slipper maker, a German—the prisoner brought another cheque on Christmas Eve, which I refused to change.
Cross-examined. The second cheque was for over £30, and I did not want to change it—I did not have a long conversation with him—I should not like to swear, but I am pretty sure he is the man—I had very little conversation with the detective and the solicitor—I spoke to my assistant about it—I did not go with him to identify—he was at the Police-court.
Re-examined. I said at the station, "That man is very much like the man, although I should not like to swear to him. "
MATTHEW TOWER (Post Office Constable). I saw the prisoner at 145, Stroud Green Road, on 16th January with regard to this £5 cheque—I had on 13th January told him that on 21st December letters containing two cheques were sent to Mr. A. A. Noss and Mr. A. W. Noss, who formerly resided at 145, and asked him if he had seen them—he replied, "No"—I asked him if he would mind giving me a specimen of his writing, which he did—I compared it with the writing on the cheque—I thought there were similarities, and asked him if he could account for it—he admitted, "There is a similarity," but denied all knowledge of it—I pointed out the similarity in the "A," and nineteen others—from what Piper and his assistant told me, I took the prisoner to the General Post Office, where he was identified by Steele from seven or eight—I had previously traced the cheque to Mr. Piper.
Cross-examined. I saw his wife—they answered all questions—Mr. Noss had given notice of his change of address in June—the letters were detained at Stroud Green in mistake or purposely by the postman—the error is common—I see no motive the postman would nave in wrong delivery—the postmen have a list of changes of address—there are auxiliary men in busy times—this postman was one—he is not here.
Re-examined. The postman could not identify a particular letter which he delivered.
ARTHUR ALFRED NOSS . I am a banker's clerk, of Grove House, Dickenson Road, Crouch Hill—I previously resided at 145, Stroud Green Road—I never received this cheque—the writing on it is not mine—I had not seen the prisoner before I saw him at the Police-court.
Cross-examined. I have received letters re-addressed, having given notice to the post-office—I did not leave my new address with the prisoner—there was no one to leave it with—I sold the house to a Mr. Barratt in the same road.
JOSEPH REYNOLDS (N 331). I arrested the prisoner at 9.15, on 21st January—he was charged at Hornsey—he made no reply—I found on him this cheque-book of the London and County Bank and four pawntickets.
Cross-examined. I found no tickets for boots.
The prisoner received a good character.
GUILTY on the Second Count — Two Months' Hard Labour.
NEW COURT.—Friday and Saturday, February 13th and 14th, 1891.
Before Mr. Recorder,
MR. BESLEY and MR. CHARLES GILL Prosecuted, and MR. WADDY, Q. C.,Defended.
ROBERT WYMAN . I am in the service of Messrs. Dunn and Co., of the Stirling Chemical Works, West Ham—on October 13th I noticed a quantity of old iron hoops outside Shop P; this is one of them (produced), and the following Monday I heard of the loss of the platinum.
Cross-examined. I did not take hold of them to look at them—a crucible or dish something like a flower-pot goes inside here; and this is used to hold it and lift it up.
JAMES MCKENZIE . I am manager of the Stirling Chemical Works, West Ham—on Monday, October 13th, I saw Chamberlain open the safe where the platinum dishes used in the making of phosphoric acid are kept; I do not think it was locked—the dishes were not inside.
Cross-examined. Some of the irons were a little less than the others, about two-thirds the size of this one, and as the irons differed, the dishes varied also—I saw them every day of my life, they were worked under my management—this ring goes over the lugs—some had two lugs, and
some four—the rings are never moved from the dishes—I have not heard of any trace of three-fourths of the platinum.
Re-examined. I was at work up to two o'clock, there were then six small fires, and one platinum vessel on each—each vessel has an iron thing like this, which is never taken off, it is fastened on—Griggs had charge of the six vessels.
SPENCER DUNN . I am a chemist, and carried on works at West Ham in the name of Dunn and Co. up to January 1, 1891—Tyler and Co. are now carrying them on—they have always been called the Stirling Chemical Works; I built them, and have carried them on for eighteen years—I have a process for forming, purifying, and concentrating phosphoric acid, which I have carried on over twenty-eight years, and always used platinum vessels for the purpose, made by Johnson and Matthey—I issued this circular which accurately describes the vessels, two days after the robbery. (Giving the dimension of the vessels)—that is very accurate—on November 10 I issued another circular, showing the shape of the vessels pretty well—that is printed on the blank page of the former circular—Griggs had charge of the keys from twelve o'clock on Saturday night till Monday morning—it would take seven minutes to walk to Griggs' house—we work from Monday morning to Saturday at midnight—we do not put the furnaces out—this iron is one of the six—it is prevented from falling off by the lugs—there are no screws; the ring is bolted into the platinum, and there it remains till it is worn out, or till the platinum needs repair—they were put into a safe on Sunday nights; they were at work all the rest of the time—I heard of the loss of the vessels when I arrived at the works on Monday morning; McKenzie came to me—there was no mark of violence to the premises or to the safe—on January 71 received a telegram from Johnson, Matthey and Go., asking me to go and see them—I did so, and I saw Mr. Sellon the next day—on January 19 I went there again and saw the defendant there—I had never seen him before—Mr. Sellon said, "This is Mr. Bruce, and I should like you to have a talk together. I have brought you to see Mr. Bruce, to see what is to be done in this matter. You had better go into a private room and talk it over; I have received 100 ounces of platinum from Mr. Bruce"—I went into another room with Bruce, and said, "Mr. Bruce, this is a very serious matter; can you tell me what induced you to buy this platinum?"—he said, "I was offered 55s. an ounce for it, and I thought 5s. an ounce was a good business"; that means a good profit—he said he had paid £250 for it—I said, "Of whom did you buy this platinum?"—he said, "I do not know the name of the man, but I think it is Burgess or Bruges, or some such name"—I said, "Have you his address?"—he said, "No, I don't know where he lives"—I said, "Did you take a receipt for the £250 you received?"—he said, "No "—I said, "Will you tell me how you paid him?"—he said, "I paid him notes and gold"—I said, "What sort of notes?"—he told me, and I said, "Of course you have got an entry in your books of this transaction?"—he said, "No; I have not made any entry "—I said, "It is assuming a very serious aspect, but I should like to know if you can help us to recover the remainder of our platinum?"—he said, "If the man comes again I certainly will give him in custody at once"—I said, "If you are successful in enabling us to recover the remainder of our property I shall be disposed to look more leniently on
your conduct; I shall send an inspector of police to you in a day or two; that is the inspector who has had charge of the robbery from its inception"—I said, "When did you buy this platinum?"—he said, "On the Tuesday or Wednesday after Christmas"—one thing I have omitted; I said, "Who offered you fifty-five shillings for this?"—he said, "The Sheffield Smelting Company"—I said, "I shall go and see them," and I went and saw Mr. Morton, the manager—I had not then seen the 99 oz., I had seen a little piece—I know of no works but ours in which platinum vessels are used for the purpose of making phosphoric acid, but some persons may make a small quantity—these vessels were made from my sketch and instructions; I have never seen any like them—using them gives a peculiar whiteness to the interior surface of the platinum, the whole of the inside is equally whitened; there is hardly any difference, and the outside on the lower part under the rings is blackened and rendered grey when it is exposed to the fire—where the iron ring is round the vessel it would be less exposed to the fire—I saw no lugs among the old iron—a little phosphoric acid clings to the vessel, either combined or uncalcined—I believe these three hundred pieces of platinum (produced) to be portions of those six vessels, the greater part, if not all of them, show that peculiar whiteness on one side, and the appearance of the action of the fire on the other, and again I tell it by the thickness, by the gauge—I have not applied any chemical test to see whether phosphorus was deposited on the interior of our vessels.
Cross-examined. All that I can speak to is whiteness inside, fire outside, and thickness of gauge—I speak of the gauge simply by feeling it—the thickness of these pieces coincides, so far as touch is concerned, with the thickness of our dishes—scores and scores of dishes and platina stills are made in different parts of the world—the thickness of this is the same as ours—I do not know that ours went from gauge 10 to gauge 7—that was not in my evidence, but it was made a point of to the Magistrate—I have not examined the gauge of any of these pieces; I am told that it has been done, but I have not been told that there is not a single piece here answering the description—I have not received any information of any further portion of bur platinum being found—I have not heard of what is believed to be a portion of it being purchased in Paris—Brummell, the man who had charge of the dishes, and I, examined these 99 ounces the week after I caused the prisoner to be arrested—I should not know the piece which I had seen when I took that step—the piece was something like this (selecting one)—this has the whiteness, the colour on the other side, and the thickness—the rolling was not a feature of my identification—a point was made before the Magistrate of the rolling, but not before the prisoner's apprehension—I gave no evidence about the rolling; I said, "In the course of my conversation with the defendant, I understood that this platinum had been rolled, and he said, 'Most persons in our trade have rollers, arid I have a little hand roller myself'"—the matter was tested in my presence by being rolled through the defendant's roller, to see whether grooves or ridges would appear—I do not know the result; it was to be examined by experts, and they did not point it out to me—I do not know that they got a ridge or a mark which did not correspond, showing that it had been rolled through another roller—the black marks on these
pieces are precisely similar to those on my foods, and the inside whiteness also—they would be the same, and the thickness also, in all platinum vessels used anywhere for phosphoric acid—I do not know that forty houses in Glasgow alone use such vessels—the whiteness is caused by the action of the hot acid on the platinum—I have never tried if nitric or sulphuric acid would do the same—it is not roughened; there is no disturbance of the surface to the naked eye—as the platinum does not lose a quarter of an ounce in ten years the action must be extremely small, but just perceivable—the mark on this piece is more in the nature of a furrow than a ridge—I never saw the ridge to which reference is made—I make acetic, muriatic, hydrochloric, fluoric, formic, and several other acids—fluoric acid is made in iron and leaden dishes, not in platinum—no copy of this circular was sent to the prisoner.
Re-examined. I had no platinum vessels besides these six except a little experimental one, two or three inches in diameter, weighing three-quarters of an ounce—these vessels were only used for phosphoric acid—I have not heard of the loss of any other platinum vessels—we communicated with Johnson and Matthey as far as I know within a few hours after the theft; they had seen the whole 300 pieces at the time of the conversation, but I had only seen one; I relied on their statement—I left the actual scientific measurement to Mr. Sellon—the defendant was present when the roller was used, and his junior Counsel and two solicitors; I think there were six persons present altogether.
JOHN JENKINS RISDEN . I am in the service of Johnson, Matthey and Co., and pay special attention to their large chemical apparatus, which includes the manufacture of platinum dishes—Mr. Dunn's dishes passed through my hands—the gauge is recorded in the books; they varied from ten at the bottom to seven at the top, the lugs being thicker metal—these pieces of metal on the table were submitted to me; I went through twenty-five or thirty per cent, of them, and found the thickness was an easy ten, and ranged down to practically seven, and one piece was as low as four; a large number were above six—in my judgment the pieces had been rolled—an experiment was made with Bruce's hand roller; that is not the article with which the ridges were formed—there was no object in using a roller except to destroy the identity; it was not done for any commercial purpose—rolling would reduce the thickness of the plate—I found marks of rolling on all the pieces—I have been at Johnson and Matthey's twelve years—I have never made any other dishes of this sort or form; they were made specially to Mr. Dunn's' order—the whitening indicates that it has been used in chemical manufacture—platinum stands a greater heat than any other metal—I never knew platinum in this state to be sold as a commercial transaction, or saw it in this state—the purchase of old metal would not come under my notice—we get it in very smooth highly polished sheets of a uniform gauge—if Mr. Dunn's dishes were cut up and rolled I should expect them to be dirty on one side and crystalline on the other; identical with this appearance—I cannot say from these pieces in what form they were before they were broken up; there is nothing to show whether they were cylindrical, but they had formed a vessel, because of the crystalline appearance on one side and the dirty appearance on the other—no such vessel has been made since to my knowledge—I know no large manufacturer of such things in England.
Cross-examined. Our firm is the one most known in the trade, and if a robbery takes place we should be sure to know it, and it would be the very worst place for anybody who was guilty to take the stuff to—when the bottom of dishes or crucibles are broken they are brought to us as scraps, and melted—Mr. Sellon has charge of that part of the work—it is common to find vessels with that white appearance inside, not only where phosphoric acid has been used—with regard to the outside, there is nothing in the appearance of these scraps contrary to the ordinary submission of crucibles to the action of fire.
By the COURT. One piece is as low as 4, and another as high as 6, but they do not show a gauge varying from an easy 10 to an easy 7; this piece is flat—I do not mean to say that there is no piece corresponding with the gauge varying, but comparing one piece with the other there is.
By MR. WADDY. They were examined with a fair gauge used in our business—7 is thicker than 10; the maximum is practically 10, which is as thick as a piece of cardboard, about the 30th of an inch—the difference between 7 and 10 would be a 10 or 12,000th of an inch—I could tell the difference by feeling it with my fingers; I may be wrong in my decimals; one would be very stiff and the other very pliable—these have been rolled in what are called rough rollers; that would not necessarily reduce the thickness—I recognise the ridge on this piece; it must have been a powerful squeeze to make that—I showed the Magistrate fifteen or sixteen pieces containing this double ridge—I was present at the subsequent experimental rolling; I fed the roller—the result of it was that the defendant's roller, which had been taken from his shop, would not make the marks; it did make a mark which was not to be found there—this roller must have reduced the height of the ridge the 10,000th of an inch, and probably more—this piece is now nine gauge. (Measuring it with a gauge)—the roller would not reduce it more than a gauge to make this ridge—I cannot find any piece which is ten, this is ten easy—I do not mean to tell the Jury that it was ten before it was rolled—I never said that the things I made for Mr. Dunn were at the outside ten; I said that the lugs were thicker—I believe I picked out pieces which actually have the marks of the lug, and had them in a separate envelope—I never put a piece of metal through a roller in my life—Mr. Knight does a very good business as a roller, he has done jobs for us occasionally—he was present at the ceremony of rolling—it was a jewellers' roller, you can put any pressure on you like; we tried both the easy pressure and the hard pressure—the easy pressure did not reduce it three gauges, only 3-1000th of an inch, say one gauge—the easy pressure was put on first, it was reduced from 27 to 30, they go downwards; thirty is the thin gauge, it was just the opposite in two gauges which were used—if anyone found out that one piece produced was nearly if not quite eleven, it must have been an estimate, because we had no gauge to try it—Mr. Morton found a piece at my office, which was gauged, and found to be nearly if not quite eleven—that was done at different times—I have the pieces in the envelope; they are not part of my evidence—the eleven pieces had been rolled—we send crucibles and dishes for various purposes all over the world, and there are many chemical actions which can only be worked by means of such a tremendous heat that platinum is the only thing that will bear it—we
have about forty customers in Glasgow alone—about 40 tons of platinum are raised and exported from Russia alone every year.
Re-examined. The experiments in rolling were done at Clerkenwell Police-station—in one case we put a piece between the rollers more than once; you can screw it down so that you cannot move the rollers—the maximum is 10-1000th of an inch—I know of No. other phosphoric acid works, and I do not know what the platinum is used for after it leaves our place—we have not made such vessels as this for ten years to my knowledge—platinum does not come back as scraps, but as a disused vessel—there is no reason for using a roller to scraps.
By the COURT. These pieces are not manufactured, they are portions of vessels broken up—there could be no motive for applying the roller, except to disguise it by altering the surface—it did not increase the value, but it would make the proof of identity more difficult—I can think of no other reason for rolling.
ROBERT WILLS . I am metal clerk to Johnson, Matthey, and Company—platinum is specially under my notice—I remember the sale of platinum dishes to Mr. Dunn from time to time, and in October received notice of the loss by this circular—the defendant, who I knew, came on 7th January and showed me a small piece of platinum as a sample, and said ho had 500 oz. of it; he wanted over fifty shillings an ounce, as he had given that price—I said, "I cannot give you that"—I offered him a lower price, and returned the sample, which was one piece about 3 1/2 in. by 3 in.—he took it away; I reported the matter to Mr. Sellon, and in consequence of his directions I called at the defendant's premises on 9th January, and asked to see a sample; he gave me one, and I handed it to Mr. Sellon—it was tested, and on, I believe, the 13th, a letter was written to Mr. Dunn, who called on the 16th, and had an interview with Mr. Sellon and me—about half an hour afterwards, by Mr. Sellon's directions, I went to the defendant's place and said, "To save you the trouble of sending the bulk, I have called for it"—he went to his safe and gave me the parcel, and said he wished he had never had anything to do with it; he had been all these years in business, but had kept himself aloof from buying parcels; he had small parcels of gold occasionally offered for sale, but he instructed his people never to buy them—I said, "Do you know of whom you bought this parcel?"—he laid, "I do not, I put his name and address on a piece of paper which I cannot find"—I said it was all important that he should find it—he said, "I will still endeavour to find it"—I said, "Should he call again, on my responsibility you give him in charge"—I brought away the parcel of platinum; it weighed 99 3-10 oz.
Cross-examined. I have not mentioned before about his having parcels brought; it escaped me—I have known the defendant fifteen or sixteen years as a man of honourable reputation—I have been at Johnson and Matthey's nearly 30 years—he appeared to be acting frankly, kindly, and openly, and all the way through to be endeavouring to give me all the information he had—50s. an ounce would be a fair price to give, or about 70s. made up in vessels—the scrap price varies from 50s. to 55s.—my department is gold, silver, and platinum, in the out-going department—we make and sell platinum stills—they are very expensive, sometimes £4,000 for a still—we send out very large numbers of things made of
platinum in the course of a year—the prisoner has sold me gold and silver in the shape of bars; ingots.
Re-examined. I know Mr. Bruce dealing with gold and silver for spectacle makers—platinum scales are nothing like the dishes supplied to Mr. Dunn—scales do not come back broken up—platinum has only once been brought in in this state in my twenty years' experience, and that was three years ago—they do not melt platinum into ingots.
JOHN S. SELLON . I am one of the firm of Johnson, Matthey and Co.; we manufacture platinum articles—I am not aware of any other such firm in England—we sold dishes to Mr. Dunn at different times, specially made to his drawings and order—I had been absent on the Continent, and in July Mr. Wills told me he had seen a piece of platinum, and I told him I should like to see a piece; he brought one, and it gave me the impression of metal which had been cut up, and not by a workman, because that would bear the polish of the original metal, scraps actually cut off—I have only once seen platinum in this condition, and that was a stolen parcel—my suspicions wore immediately aroused, and I gave instructions to telegraph to Mr. Dunn, bearing in mind the robbery which had been committed two or three months before—after the interview with Mr. Dunn a sample was procured; I examined it and sent it into the laboratory to be tested, but it was so small that no trace of phosphoric acid could be detected, and I wrote to Mr. Bruce asking him to bring the whole 100 oz.—he called on the 16th, and I told him I had strong suspicious that the 100 oz. were a portion of some stolen metal—he expressed great surprise, and I asked him how he came into possession of it—he said he had made an advance upon it—I asked him whether he would allow the whole bulk to be sent over to us that I might examine it—he assented, and I sent Mr. Wills to bring it, which he did, and I sent a receipt to Mr. Bruce—I divided it in half, and sent one half into the laboratory to be tested for phosphoric acid, the other half was sealed and put away—I watched the results, and saw precipitate of phosphoric acid—I then asked Mr. Dunn to call on the following Monday, the 19th,. and asked Mr. Bruce to call at the same time—I did not speak to Mr. Bruce till I took Mr. Dunn to him—one was shown into one room and one into another, arid then I said to Mr. Bruce, "This is the owner of the platinum, you had better give him information how it came into your possession"—after they came out, Mr. Dunn said that Bruce said he had given £250 for it in notes and gold—I formed a judgment as to what the prices were, because there were 100 ounces, which is an unusually large quantity; 100 ounces would never be offered as cut up platinum, and from my examination of the gauge, and the traces of phosphoric acid, I came to the conclusion that it was what we had made up for Mr. Dunn, because if there had been any other robbery, we should have heard of it.
Cross-examined. 100 ounces being offered for sale in any country struck me as being very large—a large quantity of metal had been stolen, and this answered in every particular to what would be the condition of the stolen metal if cut up and rolled as this has been, and we knew of no other stolen metal, whereas if any other had been stolen in England or throughout Europe we should have known, and it would not occur in any ordinary commercial transaction—I do not know the prisoner, but I have ascertained that he is a jeweller and optician and gold and silversmith in Clerkenwell—I imagine
no notice was sent to him of this robbery, and though we knew of it, it is very unlikely that he did—the material I saw was such that if not rolled it would correspond with the stolen stuff, and the rolling was extremely superficial—the whiteness inside and the fire outside and the thickness of the metal were the three points—all stills, in addition to the whiteness, would have a different colour inside from the action of sulphuric acid; the metal is uniformly gauged, and therefore you would not in 100 ounces get a variation in gauge, such as to show in these pieces; then the work in which they are used is entirely different; this metal has not been subjected to the ordinary incrustations which occur in making sulphuric acid.
Re-examined. I can discover immediately the difference between a vessel which has been used for phosphoric acid and one which has been used for sulphuric acid, but I cannot tell from this piece—the large stills, a yard in diameter, are for sulphuric acid.
BERNARD DYER . I am an analytical chemist, a Member of the London University, and a Fellow of the Institute of Chemistry—I have been occupied for some years in testing materials for sulphuric acid—on 27th January I received from Johnson and Matthey ten ounces of platinum, which I took away to my laboratory and subjected to analysis—from the surface of the metal I obtained one-sixth of a grain of phosphoric acid—I am an agricultural chemist, constantly engaged in testing soils for phosphoric acid, and one-sixth of a grain is a considerable quantity—this (produced) is a precipitate representing half the quantity I found—the yellow powder is due to one-twelfth of a grain of phosphoric acid—I returned the ten ounces to Johnson and Matthey.
Cross-examined. I did not begin by treating the platinum with some acid; I subjected half the quantity to the action of boiling water, which dissolved a small quantity of phosphoric acid, and, having got out all that was soluble, I afterwards removed the rest by the addition of dilute nitric acid—I am not aware that in the course of many manufactures carried on in platinum vessels phosphates of various kinds are produced—there is no phosphate of silver in these crucibles and platinum dishes; I should have detected silver if it had been there—this is not phosphate of silver—the surface of the platinum contained oxide of iron on the surface, which would temporarily fix it, and would account for it not coming away with the water—when phosphoric acid is strongly heated it assumes a very hard and crystalline formation—there are three varieties of it—any considerable quantity not deliquesed would be visible—the surface was covered with oxide of iron; that would make phosphate of iron—the iron would take up a good deal of water—the phosphoric acid would to some extent find its way into the platinum unless it was burnished, and in that condition it would be easily removed by water—there would be nooks and crannies from which it would be difficult to remove it—all platinum vessels subjected to heat get a dulness, and that is the whiteness—it is a molecular alteration; a physical change—I cannot say that the phosphoric acid was free—phosphoric acid proved to be present, but whether it was there when I began, in the form of free phosphoric acid or in some combination I am unable to say—it would not be a phosphate unless there was phosphoric acid; it would not be phosphate of lime; the only material I could find likely to be combined with
it was a little iron, which was on the surface—arsenic would give almost the same reaction as I found, and therefore I was very careful to examine the precipitate, and there was not the least trace of arsenic there.
Re-examined. I adhere to my statement that I found phosphoric acid in a tangible quantity—I do not think the cross-examination affects my test.
WILLIAM BRUMMELL . I am a manufacturing chemist in the prosecutor's employ, and had charge of these platinum dishes—they were constantly under my notice—the interior was stained by the action of the phosphoric acid and the outside was darkened by fire—I went to Johnson and Matthey's, and examined 100 ounces of platinum scraps, and recognised on them a white appearance and a dark grey, and on one piece the mark where a lug had been—I know of no firm but Dunn and Co. who manufacture phosphoric acid in platinum vessels—an iron ring went round the dishes, and there were marks on some pieces corresponding with the iron.
Cross-examined. This is where the lug has been broken away—the lug was fastened into the platinum dish; it is the only piece I could find among the 300 with the lug mark, but there were only three or four lugs in each dish—I have never worked in any other works—they do not use platinum dishes for hydrochloric acid.
Re-examined. One dish out of the six had small lugs, and this represents just the distance at which the lug would be; it is in the centre of the dish where the iron ring rested—the lug is something like my finger, only projecting out, more like a button—it is a solid piece of platinum fitted into the dish and bulging out for the ring to rest on, and because something has been broken from there I assume that a lug has been broken away.
SARAH FRANCIS . My husband is a bootmaker of 92, West-end Lane, Stratford, next door to Mr. Griggs—on a Saturday or Monday night, between eleven or twelve o'clock, a pony and cart drove up to Mr. Griggs' door, and a stout man got out and called to Mr. Griggs, who answered, and the man drove away, and did not come back—another cart drove up in January, and I could swear to the man who drove it.
Cross-examined. On or before January 13th I was asked, I think, by Inspector Langrish if I would pick out two persons in a group who were shown to me, and I could not do so.
Re-examined. I had described somebody before that—I saw someone come out of Putland's Cottage, and afterwards identified him as the man who drove the pony and cart in January; not the first time.
THOMAS HANCOCK MORTON . I am manager of the London works of the Sheffield Smelting Company—at the end of December the defendant called on me, and asked if I was a buyer of platina; I said, "Yes," he asked what the price would be; I said the market was in a very unsettled condition, and asked how much he had got; he said, "About 100 oz. "—I said the selling price had been reduced to about fifty-five shillings an ounce, and I could make him no offer, but asked him to give me a few days to make a quotation and give mo the refusal of it—I was unable to get a price, and consequently he went elsewhere.
Cross-examined. We are refiners of platinum and gold and silver—we sell it as well as buy it; in scraps or precipitated—we sell it principally
to dental manufacturers and people like Johnson and Matthey—we have sold 100 ounces at a time, and thirteen times that amount—I have known the prisoner intimately for twelve or fourteen years; his place of business is 100 yards from ours—I have always found him as a thoroughly honourable man in business—I have seen these pieces, which hear the ridges produced in the latest rolling—I can tell that this piece with the ink marks has been rolled—an experienced man in the platinum trade would find some pieces which bear marks of rolling and some which do not; any one unaccustomed to rolling would not notice these marks—a jeweller's roller rolls smoothly—I do not think a ridge like this could be done by simply rolling down one gauge, there must have been several rollings to produce considerable diminution in thickness—I called one of the pieces 10 tight; a tight fit for 10—that piece had been rolled; it must have been considerably thicker than 10—our place is at Clerkenwell—silver and gold and other metals are brought there to purchase and to smelt—we buy sweepings of jewellers' shops, and get gold and silver out of that—we do not purchase gold and silver from stray visitors, but from regular customers, and sell the refined metal again—I have had considerable dealings with the prisoner; he has bought gold and silver of me, but I have only bought them of him in the form of a bar, the refuse of his factory, which I have paid for in gold and notes—I gave no receipts, but we make an entry of it.
Re-examined. I manage the London office; the works are at Sheffield—I keep proper books; I do not buy from strangers; I usually pay by cheque—the amount of platinum sold is large, but there are not many people dealing in it—I said I had thirteen times 100 oz.; that was a wornout still which was put into my hands to sell, and I sold it; that was twelve years ago—we have bought platinum in small strips twelve or fourteen years ago which realised nearly £1,300; we took a bill for that—I have had several transactions within a fortnight to the value of 100 oz.—I have bought platinum scraps, electrical, and all sorts from collectors—I have bought more than 100 oz. from one refiner—we give him a cheque, and enter it in the book—100 oz. is not a constant occurrence.
JOHN LANGRISH (Police Inspector K). I was in communication with Mr. Dunn and Mr. Wontner on this theft being committed, and on 21st January I saw the prisoner at his place of business, and told him I was an inspector of police, and had been apprised of the fact that he had been dealing in platinum, which was said to be part proceeds of a robbery at the Stirling Works, West Ham, and asked how he got possession of it; he said, "I bought it of a customer of mine"—I said, "What did you pay for it?"—he said, "£250"—I said, "Can you give me anything like a description of the person from whom you bought it?'—he gave me a description, but did not mention the name—I asked him how he paid—he said, "I do not know, it was some in notes and some in gold, I cannot say what amount of notes or gold"—I asked if he had any platinum; he produced a small portion and said, "That is all I have"—I asked him whether he had a receipt—he said, "No; I do not keep any books, I do not take receipts or give receipts"—they were an ordinary optician's premises—I searched them, there is a shop and about three rooms, and the same upstairs; he lives there with his family—the shop window is 7 or 8 ft.
frontage and then there is the door—I found no platinum except what he gave me—I took him to the station—he was charged with receiving £350 worth of platinum, part of the robbery at Mr. Dunn's—he said nothing.
Cross-examined. It is a small shop compared with other shops in the road—I took charge of what I found in his safe, including some diamonds—they do not form part of an optician's business.
MR. WAINE. (Not examined in chief.)
Cross-examined. I am an analytical chemist—this platinum was submitted to me for analysis—I did not obtain any phosphorus or phosphoric acid—I converted it into phosphate of silver; that was obtained from the phosphorus in the metal—I did not treat it with nitric acid; I made the phosphate of silver—it is quite possible that the platinum was contaminated with phosphorus which had never been used in the making of phosphoric acid.
By the COURT. I did not know that it had been used for making phosphoric acid, but I was asked to test for phosphoric acid or phosphorus, and I was told that it might have been stolen—I am one of Johnson and Matthey's chemists—the phosphorus might have been in it or in any form; platinum does not contain phosphorus, but old platinum vessels are liable to contamination by phosphorus—I do not know why phosphorus should appear in platinum, but it may appear on it.
By Mr. WADDY. We are general analysts, but I do a little in platinum—I am unable to say whether this piece of platinum had phosphoric acid free on it—old platinum dishes are used for various chemical operations, and will occasionally become contaminated with phosphorus without phosphoric acid being made in them; the mere fact of phosphoric acid in some form being found is no proof that they have been used for making free phosphoric acid—I applied my test to the surface, but the platinum is porous and the test would penetrate some distance in—it is possible that though not used for making phosphoric acid there may be some trace of phosphorus in the vessels—in ordinary laboratories we use platinum for making fusions, and these vessels might retain a trace of phosphorus, because there had been phosphorus put into them.
Re-examined. My second examination was on 23rd January, of 25 oz. of platinum from Mr. Risden; I had examined one of the small fragments first—the next was 50 oz., and the last 25 oz.—I always applied the test to the surface—I did not know before my second examination that Mr. Dyer had been employed; I knew that he was making a test, but I forget how I heard it—I think I knew it on 31st January, the last time I gave evidence—I did not put any phosphorus in—I did not dissolve any phosphorus or platinum—I got the phosphorus off the platinum—I did nothing inconsistent with Mr. Dyer's statement—phosphorus had been on the platinum, but I cannot say phosphoric acid—I did not report that there was phosphorus after my first test, but after my third.
By the COURT. The result of my evidence is that I found phosphorus there, but how it got there I do not know—if the piece I examined had formed portions of a vessel in which phosphoric acid was made, that would sufficiently account for the presence of phosphorus.
The prisoner received an excellent character. NOT GUILTY , but the JURY stated that they were satisfied that the metal produced was Messrs. Dunn's property.
MR. BESLEY Prosecuted, and MR. GILL Defended.
NOT GUILTY .— There was another indictment against the prisoner, which was postponed to the next Session.
THIRD COURT.—Saturday, February 14th, 1891.
Before Mr. Common Serjeant.
NATHAN STEIN . I am a bootmaker of 23, New Road, Commercial Road—I am a director of the Sun Loan and Deposit Company—I have been treasurer since August, 1890; the society lends money and receives money on deposit upon which interest is allowed or charged—we require application forms to be filled up with the names and addresses and sureties of the borrowers, and all particulars—the company was formed in March, 1889—the prisoner was the promoter and the managing director—in September, 1889, Mr. Marks was appointed secretary, and the prisoner's duties were transferred to him—up to that time the prisoner kept the books: the "Deposit and Repayment Book and "Loans and Savings" or "Repayment of Loan Book—since Marks' appointment it was the prisoner's duty to attend at the office, 16, Osborne Street, from eleven to four, and three nights in the week from four to seven, and three nights a week from seven to ten to inquire as to and receive loans—I attended with a director to receive deposits and pay loans to those whom the prisoner, after inquiry, passed—the prisoner received the money and put it into a till, and entered the amount in a book—in February, 1890, the directors passed a resolution that the prisoner must not collect moneys, but should sit in the office to receive repayments—on 2nd September the prisoner handed me four promissory notes and four application forms—this No. 907 was one—I am referring to my private book, where I enter money I receive and pay—I entered this transaction at the time—the prisoner should have handed me £53 4s. 9d., the amount of repayments and savings shown by the books to have been received on several nights—we added the amounts up which were shown in the book—most of the entries are the prisoners—I went through the book that evening with him—I sign the; total in the book when I receive the money from him—I gave him credit for three out of four promissory notes for £10 which he produced and said were paid out by him—their numbers were 907, 908, 909, and 910—I handed him 909 back, and said it was not satisfactory, and he said, "I have made a mistake; I have not paid this one "—he took it away—those notes would reduce the amount due from him by £15 5s. 9d.—on No. 907 was advanced £8 9s. 11d.—he handed me the balance, £37 19s. in cash—instructions were given him not to do duties outside the office—I asked him how he came to pay those loans, and why could he not wait till I got to the office—he said the borrowers wanted the money to buy goods
for the holiday, and could not wait till I came—I put the numbers of the notes on the forms and folded them—I generally put them in the drawer of a writing table till the secretary calls for them to enter them in the ledger—I keep the key of the drawer—the secretary gives them back to the prisoner, who separates the notes from the forms, and puts the notes away in rotation in a drawer in the safe, of which he alone has the key, and the forms in the safe, of which Marks had one key and the prisoner the other—the practice was carried out in this case—No. 907 was a loan of £10, which was to be repaid at 5s. a week—I afterwards found those repayments had not been made—Mr. Marks was instructed to send the usual printed application stating there were arrears, and that the company would take proceedings—that application went at the end of October to Mr. Borisof—on 10th November I had a conversation with Mr. Borisof at the office—I made inquiries—I went to 45, Oxford Street—other directors went elsewhere—I have two houses opposite Mr. Neumer's, 45, Oxford Street—I did not find Neumer—in August last I was at Ramsgate—I returned to London on 25th August—I went to the loan office in the evening—on 26th I settled with the defendant in a similar way to the last occasion, but the amount is £38 8s. loans, £3 15s. savings, and 6d. for forms—the prisoner paid me the balance due to the company, and the documents were put away as formerly—I always ask Marks for the last number in his ledger, and number on—he enters the numbers and particulars—I fill up the names of borrowers and their sureties—the prisoner had credit for the £8 9s. 11d. standing against No. 883: the £38 8s. and £3 15s. 6d.—a meeting of directors was held on 17th November—that day Marks wrote the prisoner—in consequence of the prisoner not attending the meeting, I went to his house that evening—he was not in—I called the next morning with Alexander Cohen, another director—a woman opened the door—I produced to him No. 907, the promissory note, Borisof loan—I said, "Why didn't you come to the meeting last night? you had a letter written you to attend"—he said, "The letter was not written to my liking, and therefore I didn't go"—we spoke in English—I said, "We can't find the security nor the borrower's name; what about that?"—he said, "I admit I have done it, and I will pay for it"—I said, "Money won't pay it," and I told him we should take further proceedings against him, and that the directors would meet at ten o'clock and go to the solicitors and perhaps get a warrant, and the best thing he could do would be to go there, when perhaps he could make some arrangements with the directors—the directors met that morning at the office—I was there—the prisoner came about ten o'clock—Mr. Bowman and Mr. Marks were there—Mr. Bowman said, "Haven't you robbed us enough, but you have even forged promissory notes besides robbing us in other ways?"—he said he was sorry he had done it—I recollect the prisoner's letter of resignation—he ceased to have connection with the company about the 18th of October—that was after the directors had discussed the matter.
Cross-examined. The company was started in March, 1889—I came on the scene in May or June—it is the "Sun Deposit Company"—the directors were going to call it "Imperial"—the offices were 71, Greenfield Street—they are now at 16, Osborne Street—the Registrar would not register the company as "Imperial," although those forms were
printed—there are eleven shareholders—the prisoner was the promoter—he had 500 shares; they are £1 shares—I have 750 shares; I have paid about £160 or £170 on them—there are about 10,000 shares—I had a certificate from the directors; I have not it with me, but it is in my possession—I paid up as much as the other shareholders—I paid £50 premium for ten shares to the man who originally got the certificate paid by cheque—I may have paid £60 besides, I cannot say how much I have paid altogether—the instalments were repaid in forty weeks—the directors retained £24 when the prisoner left—his interest was purchased by one of the directors—it was £102 16s.—£30 was the dividend for one year—I paid him £21 in cash on account of the party who bought his shares—I held his shares as security for £30—the £21 was not all he received—he was suspended on 7th October—he was bought out on 18th November—he did not start a loan office to my knowledge, but a money exchange, at 64, High Street, Whitechapel—I have not seen his card—I do not know the Hebrew—a loan office is not so profitable as people think, there are bad debts, and it is not all sugar—I did not know the prisoner had started a money exchange until you showed me this card—I told the prisoner Borisof denied all knowledge of the loan—when I saw the prisoner on the 18th, the directors had determined to take proceedings and see our solicitor—we determined to consult the solicitor as to what steps we should take—nothing was said about the warrant—we knew the prisoner had committed forgery—I went to see Alexander Cohen on the 18th—nobody suggested I should go—at the meeting of 17th it was suggested somebody should see the prisoner, and see why he did not attend the meeting—when I received money for the prisoner it was counted over to him and checked—only the prisoner had access to the inner drawer of the safe, where the promissory notes are kept—I do not suppose he would have refused me the key, but I had no occasion to go there—I never saw the drawer standing open, it might have been unlocked—I said at the Policecourt the drawer was generally, open during business hours—I cannot say whether that is true—the drawer might have been open at times—I was at the office every night—Marks was always there—I first saw Morris Packter at the office—I heard his evidence—I suggested Packter should ascertain from Borisof when his cousin of the same name was in this country—Borisof said he was here five months—I Cannot recollect the time—he said September—my reason was that the writing on the promissory note for £10, "Simon Borisof," was that of a first-class scholar, when not one in a thousand Russian Jews can write—I can swear to the prisoner's writing on the application form—he has not complained of my carelessness in business.
Re-examined. I never had any ill-will to the prisoner—the English on the note, except "Simon Borisof," is the prisoner's—the sureties' names are in his writing—the Hebrew is the signature as witness "Woolf Zeitlin"—the prisoner can write English and Hebrew—he is a passingly good scholar—I saw no woman present on 18th November—we found that the cousin, Simon Borisof, could not write English.
DAVID MARKS . I have been secretary of the Sun Loan and Deposit Company, 16, Osborne Street, since September, 1889, under the supervision of the prisoner as managing director—I enter loans in the ledger—Nos. 907 and 883 are entered in the corresponding pages, showing the
weekly payments—on 1st October, 1889, this agreement in my writing was signed by the prisoner. (For service as managing director)—in February last the directors resolved the prisoner should only receive repayments on the premises—in August I examined the books for arrears—he requested me to go through the books, and we gave him the benefit of £4 8s., which was doubtful—Stein came back to London on 25th August—I was with him and the prisoner that evening at the office—Stein handed me application forms and promissory notes, which I entered in the ledger—in No. 883, Lazarus Levy, of 7, Wharton Street, Hackney Road, is the borrower—the sureties are L. Rossen, 13, Greenfield Street; Samuel Latner, 9, Vine Court, Whitechapel; and Joseph Alexander, 97, Cannon Street Road—the loan was £10, to be repaid 5s. weekly—I find on September 12th a repayment entered of 10s.; and on September 19th of 5s. in my writing, from the day-book—the day-book entries are the prisoner's—the 12th is an entry of two instalments—I gave the notes to the prisoner, whose duty was to put them in the inner drawer of the safe—I had no key to that drawer—the prisoner had the key—there were two keys to the outer safe—I had one, the prisoner the other—on. 2nd September I was also present with Stein and the prisoner—I entered the particulars of No. 907, loan of £10 to Simon Borisof—it was the prisoner's duty to send notice of arrears—after 2nd September I found no notice had been sent to Simon Borisof, although his weekly payments were in arrear—I sent out this notice—Borisof came to the office on the evening of 10th November—we had a conversation there as to promissory note and application form No. 907—when the prisoner came in and said, "I have brought you one sovereign which Mr. Borisof has given me to pay in, and 6s. from Mr. Hyman"—I said, "Where is the book?"—I meant the depositor's book, so that I could enter the money—he felt over his pockets, then said, "Oh, I must have lost it somehow"—the book is similar to that produced, in which the repayments are entered weekly or monthly—it is kept by the depositor, and signed when they bring their money, and the entry made in the day book—I said, "I cannot take the money, because I do not know the number"—he said, "Oh, I know the number, I can give you the number, it is 907"—I said I would enter it in the customer's book when he brought it next week, and "I daresay it will be found by then"—I entered the receipt of £1 at 907 in the ledger—on the 17th there was a meeting of the directors—I had sent a notice to the prisoner—he did not attend—I saw him the following morning at the office—Mr. Bowman came in—I heard him say, "You have not robbed us enough, but you have gone and forged this note"—the note was lying on the counter—the prisoner said, "Well, and if I have I will pay for it"—Stein came in soon after Bowman—that afternoon the prisoner offered to deposit £63 of promissory notes to settle the matter—I said I could have nothing to do with it; I had no power to settle one way or the other—from going through the books I found the repayments of Lazarus Levy's loan were in arrear—a notice was sent to Levy in consequence—he came to the office—I and other directors searched everywhere for his note of 25th August—we could find no trace of it nor the application forms—I found in ledger, page 452, Levy had been a previous borrower of £6 in January, 1890—of that £4 10s. had been regularly repaid, and the balance of 30s. paid in August.
Cross-examined. I thought on 17th November I had finished my ledger, and then found ten more pages, I was not muddled—these notes ran up to No. 890—there may have been five or ten other entries, but practically the ledger is my work—the prisoner did not complain of my mistakes—he left on 12th October—the directors gave him notice—he was suspended on 7th October, then the matter was discussed—he had not intimated his intention of going away, and the resolution of the 12th stood—since that day he did no more duty for the company—I did not mention Borisof's repayment of £1 on 10th November at the Police-court, because I did not think it important till the case went on—I should have said it had I been asked—this is my letter of October 22nd, wrongly dated August 22nd. (This was a notice to the prisoner that his resignation having been accepted, that he must not receive money or act for the company)—the prisoner was suspended, and the directors would not go to extremes on account of the intimation that he would resign on or after 12th October; we had no ill feeling, and wanted to meet him in every way—I did not know the prisoner had started a loan office—I cannot read Hebrew, I am English, I read English—I saw a card like this with the address 64, High Street, Whitechapel—I do not know how far that is from the "Sun" office or Osborne Street—the prisoner setting up a loan office would have been a matter of indifference to me—I helped to make up the balance-sheet of 1889—it showed a profit of £300 on the year, I don't know whether it is £99 or £50 per cent.—that was on a turnover of £3,000—I could tell you from the balance-sheet; the profits are not so great, there are bad debts.
Re-examined. The balance-sheet has been investigated, showing an assumed profit, and a loss of £500—the prisoner made out the balance-sheet of 1889—two guineas were paid me for my time—this is the balance-sheet to December 31st, 1889, showing £1,612 15s. 8 1/2 d., and liabilities £1,442 8s. 5 1/2 d., or a profit of £170—that was found to be erroneous—it was the prisoner's doing—on 24th October these forgeries had not been discovered—a sum was left in the company's hands to meet the prisoner's deficiencies—the books were examined to ascertain them—there was then no question of fraud.
ALEXANDER COHEN . I am a clothier, of 17, New Street—I am a director of this company—on 18th November I went with Stein to the prisoner's house—I took the notes supposed to be signed by Simon Borisof—Stein said to the prisoner, "A letter has been sent to you; how is it you did not appear? there are certain charges against you"—the prisoner said, "The letter was not to my satisfaction, and that is the reason I did not come"—a woman opened the door; the prisoner shut it—we saw no more of the woman.
NATHAN SAMPSON . I live at 126, Hoxton Street—I am a director of this company—I was at the office on 18th November, when the prisoner came—I had a conversation with him with reference to a promissory note purporting to be signed by Borisof.
Cross-examined. Four or five were present—the directors had met on the 17th; we came to the conclusion to consult a solicitor—we could not come to any other conclusion than that the prisoner had committed forgery—we
wanted an explanation—no one suggested Stein going to see the prisoner—I did not know of his going—Stein told me he had gone to the prisoner when I saw him that morning in the office—I consulted the solicitor the same morning, 18th—I had 750 shares—the prisoner was an original shareholder—we all put about £100 in the company—I knew nothing of the promissory note for £50 till it was produced at Worship Street—I paid in £75.
Re-examined. The prisoner's signature to the promissory note is April 1st, 1889—in October I purchased the prisoner's share at the reputed value of £102 16s., that was split up and in balance paid him.
SIMON BORISOF (Interpreted). I live at 23, "Wentworth Street—I went there before Passover, about Easter—there is no No. 24—I married nineteen years ago—I have known the prisoner five or six months, I had seen him before that—I did not sign this promissory note—I cannot write English, only Yiddish—I never borrowed of the prisoner, nor from the Sun Deposit Company—I know nothing of this application form—I received a letter from the Sun Office in November—I went to that office, and in consequence of what they said I went to the prisoner—I asked him who took money in my name—he said, "That is not your business, you go home and go to bed"—then I went back to the office—that was closed—I have not received the money, nor authorised anyone to receive it.
Cross-examined. My father's brother's son has the fame name as I have—I last saw him about the Feast of Tabernacles; about the 29th September—my cousin never came to me—I cannot say where he lived—he sold calico in the street—my name is not on my door—I deal in old clothes—the prisoner knew my name.
Re-examined. I was not friendly with my cousin—I do not know Gilbert, Neumer, nor Fast.
SAMUEL FAST . I am a butcher, of 30, Mulberry Street—I did not know the last witness till I saw him in Court—I did not become surety for him—this is not my signature on this promissory note—I write Yiddish—I sign my name, but not proper.
MORRIS GILBERT . I am a tailor, of 11, Boundary Passage, Shoreditch—I do not know Simon Borisof—I cannot write—I sign by my mark—I did not become surety for Borisof—I cannot say if this is my mark or not (as surety on promissory note)—I do not remember being at the Sun Office, nor anything about this matter.
Cross-examined. When I said before the Magistrate, "I always sign to oblige a friend who is good enough to pay," I meant when he will pay the debt, not pay me.
LAZARUS LEVY . In January, 1890, I borrowed £6 from the Sun Deposit Company, which I had repaid by 17th November last—I did not sign a promissory note to the company in January, 1890—on 6th November I received a notice of 5th November, in consequence of which I went to the office—I did not borrow £8 9s. 11d. nor £10 from the Sun Office on 25th August—I have had no account with them since January twelvemonth.
JOSEPH ALEXANDER . I am a tailor, of 78, Cannon Street Road—I have never been security for anybody in the Sun Loan Office—I do not know Lazarus Levy—I have not been security for him for £10—I do not know the prisoner.
Witnesses for the Defence.
MORRIS PACKTER (Interpreted). I am a draper, late of 119, Hanbury Street, but now of Bush Street—I knew Simon Borisof from June to September last year—the Simon Borisof present is not the man—that Borisof assisted in my business—I saw him last at the Feast of Tabernacles—September—about four weeks before he went away he showed mo some sovereigns.
Cross-examined. Borisof lived in Chalmers Road—I have a barrow—Borisof went out with me—the goods on the barrow belonged to me—I paid Borisof—I went with this Borisof to the Sun Office—I don't know when—I said nothing—they offered me £5 to say Borisof could not write—the Borisof I knew could write English, Russian, and Yiddish—I cannot read English—I can read Russian a little and Yiddish—I have seen Borisof write an address—this signature to the note is like the address—I said the same at the Police-court as I have said here—(Deposition referred to, where the witness said, "The signature, 'Simon Borisof,' to the bill 'A' is not like the writing that I have seen")—Borisof had not a wife in London.
Re-examined. I complained of the interpreter at the Police-court; he spoke more German; I could not understand the answer—I understand Yiddish.
SAMUEL ENNISON . I live at 64, Plummer's Row—Simon Borisof lodged there with me five months—he left me after the Feast of Tabernacles—September 29th—on a Tuesday night—he could read and write English a little—he could read English in a book—I saw him write Yiddish-Russian a little—I have seen him write English.
Cross-examined. I understand English—I had three lodgers—one slept with Borisof. (The witness's deposition being read, stated: "He could read a little, write a little, and read print a little; I never saw him write ")—I have seen him write—he can read writing—I have not been in a Court before this case, and I cannot speak proper English—I have seen him read writing constantly—not every day, but when I have come up in his room.
HARRIS GOLD . I live at 68; Plummer's Row—Borisof was my lodger there five months—I have lived there two and a half years—I am a cap maker—Borisof occupied the same room with me—I saw him last after the Feast of Tabernacles—I can write a little—I have seen him write Jewish-Yiddish—he can write in Russian, Jewish, and English—I have seen him write his name—he wrote his address for a letter addressed to himself—I think this is his writing—I was shown it at the Police-court (on the promissory note).
Cross-examined. I can only write my name—I have not seen Borisof. often write—I have seen him write a lot of times—he has been learning to write English—I have seen him write English once a day—I said at the Police-court I had seen him write his address—the prisoner came to 68, Plummer's Row—not once a week-not when Borisof was there—yes
he did—lie came and got money from Ennison—he came every week—he came when Borisof was living in the house.
Re-examined. I saw Borisof with the prisoner at 64, Plummer's Row—Borisof bought old clothes, did them up, and sold them.
JACOB WYNBERG (Interpreted). I live at 64, High Street, Whitechapel—I deal in drapery pieces—I have seen Borisof come into the office in Osborne Street—I have heard the prisoner ask him, "Are you Mr. Borisof?"—I went there to ask the prisoner to write me an English letter the beginning of September—I saw plenty of papers; I did not notice them—I did not see Borisof write anything—this Mr. Borisof is not the man—I did not know Borisof; I saw him about 12.30 or one o'clock—I saw no other person come and sign a document—Borisof remained an hour and a half—I cannot say who else came in—I heard Simon Borisof ask, "What is the result of my loan?"—the prisoner answered, "I have not looked after it yet"—the prisoner told me to call at 8 p.m.—I do not know what for—I do not know this paper (the promissory note).
Cross-examined. I cannot write English—this is my signature (another note)—that represents a loan from the Sun Office for £12—I ceased to pay my instalments—the company proceeded against me in the County Court—Mr. Bowman has not ordered me off the Sun premises—I have not done odd jobs outside the Sun Office for the prisoner—I recommended people to go to the prisoner for ship tickets—he got no money for it.
ANNIE ABRAHAMS . I am a purse-sewer, of 101, Christian Street, Commercial Road—I know the witnesses Stein and Cohen—they called to see the prisoner on 17th November; he was not in—they went away—Stein came the next morning—I showed him in the front room—I remained in the room till he went away—the prisoner asked me to stop and take notice of what Stein did and spoke—Mr. Cohen came too—I was not in the room with Stein and the prisoner.
The prisoner received a good character.
GUILTY of Uttering — Nine Months' Hard Labour.
OLD COURT.—Monday, February 16th, 1891.
Before Mr. Justice Charles.
MESSRS. BESLEY and GILL Prosecuted, and MR. HURRELL Defended.
MARY KINSOL . I am a widow, and live at 27, Woodstock Road, Shepherd's Bush—in August, 1890, the prisoner, who gave the name of Franklin, called with a woman to look at two rooms on the first floor which I had to let—I showed them, and they took them; they were seven and sixpence a week; they paid a small deposit, and a few days afterwards took possession; they were unfurnished; they brought their furniture with them—I cannot fix the date of their taking possession; it was three weeks before the fire, which occurred on 3rd September, about a quarter-past nine that evening—my attention was attracted by hearing a, noise upstairs, like glass breaking—I went upstairs and found the first
floor front room on fire—I knocked at the door of the back room, the prisoner came out, and I told him the house was on fire—I ran down directly and gave the alarm, and a policeman and people came and put the fire out; I assisted—there was nobody in bed in the house—there was an old lady upstairs; she was frightened, and was carried out—the prisoner remained living there for three weeks after the fire, and then left—when they came into the rooms they moved in at night.
CHARLES HENRY JONES . I am a member of the Salvage Corps at Shaftesbury Avenue Station—on 4th September, about eleven a.m., I went to 27, Woodstock Road to take charge of the front room first floor, where there had been a considerable fire—the furniture had been severely burnt—there was an old piano; that was not completely burnt—I saw the prisoner, in the name of Franklin—he told me that he had a paraffin lamp landing on the edge of the mantelpiece—he attributed the fire to that; there was no other cause suggested—I saw his wife there—I was there about three days—I did not ask any questions about the fire; I had no cause to, because the particulars had been got the night before.
ALFRED RICHARD JONES . I am an assessor to the Royal Insurance Company, Lombard Street—about 23rd August, 1890, we received this letter, signed "George Franklin"; it was answered from the office; and on the 27th we received this, enclosing a postal order for 3s. 6d.; a policy was then made out for £150, and forwarded to 27, "Woodstock Road—on 4th September I received notice of a fire there; I went, and saw the prisoner; I questioned him as to the cause of the fire—he said he supposed it must have been through the lamp exploding—I wanted to know how it was that he did. not ascertain it earlier—he said he was sitting in the bedroom with Ids wife, reading, and he did not know anything about it until his landlady informed him that the place was on fire—he made a claim on the form with which I supplied him, and which I now produce—there are about 100 items in the claim, including furniture, wearing apparel, and curtains, amounting to £122 8s. 6d.; for the contents of the front room—this is his signature to an agreement to accept £90 19s.—I told him I could not find traces of so much property, and made him the offer, which he accepted—it was paid from the office, and he signed a separate receipt—before payment was made I wrote to him for references, and received this reply. (This was dated from 6, Southampton Place, Auction, Land, and Estate Office, and stated that he had never had afire at any previous time, nor assisted with anyone, and giving his private addresses as 35, Overend Road, 13, Madras Place, Liverpool Road, and 38, Ringcroft Road, Holloway, signed "George Franklin")—he reserved the salvage to himself.
Cross-examined. I made a report to the company of this fire, and the secretary suggested that I should make further inquiry—it is not at all impossible to claim for goods not there without finding traces—there were traces of a bedstead—most articles of furniture would leave a trace—I was satisfied as to that, or I should not have allowed my office to pay £90.
Re-examined. Some goods you can find traces of, some not; paintings are inflammable—I saw frames, but could not say what they contained—the piano was slightly scorched, they claimed £9 10s. for that—the bedstead was of iron, that was all standing—there were traces of the bulk of the articles claimed for.
FREDERICK WARD WENBORN . I am an estate agent in New North Road, Hoxton—at the end of June last the prisoner called on me in company with a man named Whitehead, with a view of taking 13, Whitmore Road, Hoxton—he gave me four references: one was to a Mrs. Ingram, of Ringcroft Road—this is one of the answers I received—I afterwards let the premises to Culmer and Whitehead under this agreement—they continued there till September, when Culmer said he had dissolved partnership with Whitehead—the place had been open and closed at intervals; it was a house and shop, which they opened as a furniture shop; Culmer said he desired to continue it himself, that the business was prosperous; he continued there till he was arrested.
WALTER DINNEY (Detective Inspector of Scotland Yard). On 5th September, at 11.30 a.m., I was with Sergeant Williamson in Kingsland Road, and there saw the prisoner—I said to him, "We are police officers; what is your name?"—he said, "George Franklin"—I said, "I hold a warrant against you in the name of George Culmer"—he said, "Yes, I have gone in that name"—I took him to Hoxton Police-station close by, and read the warrant to him—he said nothing in answer to it; it was for conspiring with others to defraud several insurance companies—I took him to Southwark Police-station—the charge was entered there; he said nothing—on the same night, about half-past ten, I went to 13, Whitmore Road, and there found this letter; to the best of my belief it is in Culmer's writing; I have seen him write on one occasion, and I have looked at other writing of his. (This teas dated September 16th, 1890, and was addressed as "Dear Alf")—I searched 13, Whitmore Road; I saw there a bedstead, a chest of drawers, three or four chairs, a cheffonier, and a large quantity of rags on the landing at the top of the stairs, all partly burnt—I have compared the signature of "George Franklin," and the letters with regard to Woodstock Road, with this letter, and I believe them to be Culmer's writing.
Cross-examined. Whitehead did not point out Culmer to me—it was to a certain degree in consequence of Whitehead's information that I took Culmer—I compared this letter with a document I saw Culmer write, an authority to hand over certain property to his wife, and with other letters—I saw him write the whole of this authority and sign it.
JOHN KYDETT . I am a painter and decorator, of 97, Tredegar Road, Bow—in October, 1889, Culmer took two rooms at my house, at 5s. a week—about three weeks after he took possession a fire took place in those rooms—I opened the door of one of the rooms, and found the place in a blaze, it was a very fierce fire—I saw the base of a lamp found on the floor, close to a cupboard, the floor in the next room was saturated with paraffin—I saw the furniture in the rooms, I should think the value of it was about £7 or £8.
Cross-examined. I discovered the fire between seven and eight in the evening—the room was very much damaged, the furniture was a great deal damaged—I found the bedstead was scorched after the claim had been settled, when he was moving away the rest of the furniture; that was about a week or a fortnight afterwards—it was about a week after the fire that I noticed the paraffin, not at the time of the fire—there was a cupboard in each room, with only a lath and plaster partition between them—the fire was just outside the cupboard door; the cupboard in the
next room was saturated with paraffin, and the floor as well, there was a strong smell—the room was lighted by a paraffin lamp.
WILLIAM POOLE . I am a member of the Salvage Corps—on 10th November, about nine a.m., I was sent to take charge of two rooms at 97, Tredegar Road—I saw the prisoner there—I saw the rooms in which the fire had taken place—I saw the remains of a paraffin lamp lying about—I asked the prisoner if he knew the cause of the fire—he put it down to the paraffin lamp.
Cross-examined. I went into both rooms—the smell of paraffin was very strong all over the place—I was there about three days.
COLIN PEACOCK . I am a clerk in the London and Lancashire Insurance Office—on 6th September I received this letter, proposing an insurance in the name of Culmer—an answer to it was sent, and this reply came, enclosing 3s. 4d. for the first year's premium on a policy for £150—in consequence of that a policy was issued in the name of Culmer, in respect of furniture at 22, Church Road, Islington—on 31st October that policy was transferred to furniture at 97, Tredegar Road—on 11th November we received notice of a fire there—a claim was made of £115; it was settled by a payment of £60—the policy was not renewed.
WILLIAM FIELD . I am an assessor to the London and Lancashire Fire Office—on 11th November I went to see the rooms at Tredegar Road—I found there had been a very serious fire there—one room was entirely burnt out—I saw the prisoner there—he attributed the fire to an explosion of a paraffin lamp—he said he was not on the premises at the time of the fire; that he had left about ten minutes previous to the discovery of the fire—a claim was made for £115—it was settled by a payment of £60—I produce Culmer's receipt for the amount—the claim was for household furniture and a large quantity of clothing.
Cross-examined. The company paid the money—this is a letter of acceptance agreeing to accept £60—Culmer signed it in my presence—I made a report and advised the payment—there were only two rooms occupied by Culmer—the room that was burnt smelt rather strongly of paraffin—the remains indicated that £60 would be a fair sum to pay.
ALFRED RICHARD JONES (Re-examined). I am an assessor to the Royal Insurance Office—on 26th September this letter was received at the office—a reply was sent, and on 3rd October this letter came, enclosing 2s. 6d., the premium on a policy for £100 for one year, on 22, Church Road, Southgate Road, Islington—a policy was sent about 30th November—on 29th November this letter was received, asking for a transfer of the policy on the goods to 44, Richmond Gardens, Hammersmith; that transfer was made; it was in the name of F. Wilson—we afterwards received notice of a fire there, and a claim in respect of it amounting to £86 13s. 6d.—it was settled by a payment of £60, and the salvage, stated at £70, to belong to the assured—this is the receipt of F. Wilson for the money—the policy was surrendered.
HENRY CURNOW . I am a joiner, and am landlord of 44, Richmond Gardens—at the end of November, 1889, two persons, giving the names of George and Frederick Wilson, brothers, called; the prisoner is George—my wife let them a room on "Wednesday, and they brought their furniture in on Friday evening at nine o'clock—I do not know whether they slept there or not; they were very seldom there—a fire took place there on 18th December, 1889, about seven or a quarter-past in the evening;
I was having my tea at the time—the younger one came down, and while he engaged me in conversation my next-door neighbour came knocking violently at the door, and said the top of my house was on fire; that was the room I had let; I rushed up, and it was on fire everywhere, all ablaze—neighbours came and got it under before the engines arrived—the prisoner had gone out—the two young men asked my son to write out the claim, as they were bad writers—the rent was six shillings a week—they went away after the fire, but came back once or twice to know when they were going to get the money—I expected them back, because they left the rent unpaid, but they did not come back, or pay.
Cross-examined. I saw the prisoner about a fortnight before the fire—neither of them had been on the premises for a fortnight before; both of them were there on the night of the fire—I did not see George that afternoon, he went out—I have seen the prisoners of an evening about eight or nine—they did no business there whatever, they only used the room to live in.
JOHN COLLINGBOURN . I am a member of the Salvage Corps at Shaftesbury Avenue—on the evening of 18th December I went to 44, Shaftesbury Gardens—the fire had then been practically extinguished, and the firemen left—I went up to the room—a paraffin lamp had exploded in it, I did not see any fragments of it—I took the room to be a bedroom and sitting-room; it was much blackened, I suppose by the fumes of the lamp; the contents were damaged by smoke.
Cross-examined. I inspected the room, and advised the office next morning; £70 was paid—I did not see the prisoner, I saw the brother, the negotiation was with him.
WALTER DINNEY (Recalled). To the best of my belief these three letters are in the prisoner's handwriting; they are signed F. Wilson and Frederick Wilson—I would not like to say if the F. Wilson to the receipt for £70 was his—the letter enclosing the premium and the transfer is the prisoner's.
ANNIE BENNETT . I live at 22, Church Road, Southgate Road, Islington—the prisoner lodged there with his wife in the name of George Culmer—he came about Easter, 1889, and left about Christmas—I knew his brother Fred—I know of no Herbert Brown living at our place.
JAMES SUTTON METCALFE . I am agent to the Phœnix Fire Insurance Company—I produce an application for a policy in respect of furniture at 22, Church Road, Islington, dated 29th June, 1889, by Herbert Brown—in consequence of that a policy was made out for £125—on February 8th, 1890, that policy was transferred by endorsement to furniture at 250, Tufnell Park Road—on 12th February we received notice that a fire had taken place there, and the matter was placed in the hands of our assessor, Mr. King—a claim was made for £72 19s. 6d.—Mr. King settled it, and the policy was surrendered.
GEORGE KING . I am assessor to the Phoenix—this matter was placed in my hands, the claim having been made by Herbert Brown—I went and examined the place—there was a smell of paraffin on the bed, about the centre of the room, and on the carpet—I saw a can containing paraffin—there were marks on the wall, and a sofa close to the door, but not sufficient to account for the great destruction; it appeared to have been burnt at some previous time—I did not see the assured on the premises, I did subsequently; it was the prisoner—I told him that I considered the
furniture had been removed from a previous fire, and I thought he had set fire to this place—I don't know that he made any remark upon that—I told him if he liked to give up his policy I would report the loss to the office at about £10, and unless he did that I should spend £10 on a private detective, and no doubt he would find himself in the hands of the police; eventually he signed this acceptance for that amount—from what I saw I believed it to have been an incendiary fire; there were a number of people in the house.
By the COURT. I had no direct evidence; the prisoner was off the premises at the time the fire was discovered; there were several lodgers in the house besides the landlady—I did my best to find the man who removed the furniture there, but was unable, the only person who saw the furniture brought in was a child of six or seven years of age—the prisoner accepted the £10 and went into the office to sign for it, I did not see him sign.
Cross-examined. He came to my office, 10, Paternoster Row, by appointment—I am certain he is the man—I told him if he did not like to take the £10 he would practically be prosecuted—I considered the case so bad that I did not make any valuation—considerably more than £10 worth of damage was done—I did not threaten him with prosecution.
Re-examined. I told the office it was a suspicious case, but difficult to prove.
JOHN SMITH . I am a member of the Salvage Corps—at 8 a.m. on 12th February I took charge of the first floor front room at 250, Tufnell Park Road—as soon as I entered I noticed the smell of paraffin—I saw marks of fire on the bed, behind the door, close to the cupboard, and against the window—the sofa was severely damaged by fire, and the pictures burnt out in the middle—they had not been burnt in that fire, because the paper behind them was clean, and not burnt—the wainscoting was quite clean—I saw "H. Brown," who represented Culmer at the Police-court—the prisoner is the man—he said he thought the fire occurred through a pipe being in his pocket behind the door; he had a coat hanging up—he said there was a lamp—I took up a piece of a lamp off the floor—I saw two pieces of carpet saturated with paraffin—I found traces of paraffin in other parts of the room.
Cross-examined. Some parts of the paper were burnt—I made no report; when Mr. King, the surveyor, came I showed him round—I do not think the things were moved; there was not room—the paper was burnt under the window, where the fire was, against the bedstead, and the wainscoting under the paper was burnt—I have been acquainted with fires going on for four years—I had been to fires before I came to. England.
ELLEN SAUNDERS . My husband's name is William—I live at 7, Dalton Street, Peckham—about 1.30 a.m. on the 1st June I was awakened by great knocking at the door, and holloaing at the hack—I looked out at my window—I saw Mrs. Culmer sitting on the cistern on a tin trunk—she had a dress on, and a cloak, hat, and umbrella in her hand—I called my husband and children, to get them out of it, because she told me her house was on fire—No. 5 was next door—I went in front and saw flames rushing out of the street door—I saw George Culmer in the front, and Whitehead with him—Whitehead told me his name was English—I knew Culmer as Culmer—they occupied No. 5 next door.
JAMES SMITH . I live at Monkton Street, Kennington Road—I had 5, Dalton Street to let—in 1890 someone called to take the house—George Culmer took it—I saw him at the Police-court—I gave him the keys when he paid me the deposit, the latter end of April or beginning of May—I went to the premises on 2nd June—I saw a salvage man in possession—there had been a fire—I saw Culmer no more—he owed 10s., one week's rent.
Cross-examined. I let the house to Calmer and his wife—I am sure they are the people.
CHARLES HENRY GIBBS . I am a member of the firm of Price and Gibbs, 262, Kennington Road—we act as assessors for the County Fire Office—I had notice of the fire at 5, Dalton Street, and went there on 2nd June—I saw English, whom I now know as Whitehead; I settled the matter for £75—the policy was £100; this is the policy—the premium was half-a-crown; this is the proposal form—the name of the insurer is Frederick English, and furniture is insured in a private house at 5, Dalton Street, Camber well—the premium was paid 23rd May, 1890—this is the document of claim on the County Fire Office, and the acceptance by Frederick English—the amount claimed was £94 6s. 3d. for furniture and household effects; wearing apparel was included—after the fire a letter came, and I was to write to 61, Beresford Street, Walworth Road—that letter was signed by English.
Cross-examined. I did not see the letter signed—the fire was of such a character that we could not find remains of things to tell what was burnt; only an iron bedstead and some portions of furniture and some books—I advised my office to settle for £75 in consequence of what I saw and inquiries made.
By the JURY. I think the cause of the fire was in the front room, not the room insured—English represented to me he rented one room—from that I thought he was a lodger.
JAMES WALLIS . I am a clerk in the County Fire Office—I have seen the proposal form of 16th May, 1890; it purports to come from Frederick English; the premium was enclosed—I got notice of the fire from the Salvage Corps—I sent to Messrs. Price and Gibbs to see to the loss—a claim came for £94 6s. 3d.—I received this acceptance of the diminished account—I got this letter addressed to the secretary.
WALTER DINNEY (Re-examined). To the best of my belief this letter is in Culmer's handwriting; it is dated 5th June, 1890, from 61, Beresford Road, Walworth, signed "F. English"—I have seen Whitehead write; the proposal form is in his writing.
Cross-examined. I am not an expert in handwriting; I have had a good deal of experience in handwriting—I have compared this with the other documents—I have been a clerk in a bank, and in a merchant's office.
FREDERICK WHITEHEAD . I now live at 66, Ridley Road, Dalston—I am a warehouseman by occupation—I have known George Culmer about twelve years—I know his brother Frederick and other members of his family—the prisoner first spoke to me on the subject of fires about October, 1889—at that time I was living at 106, Spa Road, Bermondsey—I moved from there to 133, St. John's Road, Hoxton—he said that having a fire would be a very profitable transaction, that it would put money in my pocket and his, and he advised me to take out a policy of
insurance, and that sort of thing—he said the plan was to set a place on fire where the goods were not really worth anything, or only a few pounds, and then by a method known to him give them a higher price than they were worth, and of course great benefit would accrue to himself and me also—he said, a few baskets and sheeting, and paraffin oil were the chief factors; the sheeting was to be saturated with paraffin oil, and he would undertake to burn the place out, so that there should be no detection—he did not give me a practical illustration of how the place was to be set on fire—he mentioned a tape and candle; it was to be placed at his discretion—he said a common paraffin lamp would be broken, and the fragments of the reservoir would be put about the room, and the glass in the same way; that was to give the notion that an explosion had taken place—he spoke of several fires that he had figured in, I think Clyde Road, Tottenham, was one, Winchester Street, King's Cross, another, Southwark Bridge Road, and Tredegar Road, Bow—I insured my furniture in Spa Road in the Westminster Fire Office—I afterward moved it to 133, St. John's Road, Hoxton—I gave notice to the office, and the policy was transferred there about the middle of November—it was in Spa Road that Culmer spoke to me about fires, he spoke in a general way, of course he enlarged on the subject further on, giving more particulars, but in October, 1889, quite at the end, Tredegar Road was mentioned—he spoke to me on different occasions—while we were at St. John's Road he suggested that I should have a fire there, that was in October—I should say I moved into St. John's Road about the middle of November; the fire at that place was suggested before I went there—on the 14th December, about five in the afternoon, Culmer arrived at my place, and brought with him a sack containing some burnt clothing—he said, "Everything is now ready, all you have got to do is to clear out of the place, I will see to the rest"—he had his brother Fred with him—I left the house about half-past five with my wife and child, leaving the prisoner and Fred there—I came back about eight and found that the fire had taken place—the contents of the room were more or less destroyed by fire—that was the first fire I had been connected with—I made a claim; I followed Culmer's instructions in everything—he said if I was asked if I left a light when I went out, I should say "Yes"; if asked "What did you leave?" say, "Oh, a paraffin lamp alight"—and I did so; I was asked that question by the assessor—I sent in a claim for £119, my policy was for £100, this is the policy—Culmer introduced a lot of burnt articles, clothing, and that sort; he said the stuff he had bought and burnt cost him a sovereign, the stuff he had brought in the sack; on the claim it showed something like £20 or £30; it was merely an exaggerated claim—the value of the things in the two rooms was from £15 to £20—the contents of one room were utterly destroyed, the other room was severely scorched—£63 2s. 6d. was paid in settlement of the claim—£211 gave to Culmer; it was the agreement that he should have one-third—I also purchased furniture of him to make good what I had lost—the rest of the money I had—about 16th December I went to 44, Richmond Gardens, Shepherd's Bush—Culmer invited me to go there; he said a fire would take place there very shortly, and he wished me to seethe affair; he took me to view the furniture, and such like—he said he had procured a policy in the name of Frederick Wilson, and his brother would assume that name and
represent himself to be the owner of the goods there; that the fire would take place in a day or so; he was waiting for the transfer of the policy, which was originally taken out for 22, Church Road, Islington—I went and saw the furniture on the 16th, and stayed the night—some of the things were partly burnt; a chest of drawers and some clothes were more or less burnt—he said that furniture had come from Tredegar Road, a mahogany table, picture frames, and various things—on the 18th December, the night of the fire, I went with Culmer's wife to Richmond Gardens, not to the house—we were on a bridge at the back of the house, and saw the flames from the house; and about twenty minutes after I saw the prisoner and was in conversation with him—I saw his brother almost an hour after—before the fire I had seen the prisoner—it was arranged that I should not speak to any one; if I saw them I was to take no notice—when I reached Richmond Gardens George and his brother were in front of me; on seeing me they went ahead—after the fire we went to a public-house, and the prisoner said he was afraid it would be rather an awkward affair; that his brother Fred was quite new to the business, and he thought perhaps some query might arise—after that I went home—I remember the rooms at 250, Tufnell Park Road being taken by Fred Culmer—he purchased some furniture from me; he bought the salvage of the St. John's Road fire, and gave me £5 for it—on February 10 I was with the prisoner when he bought a sofa, a pair of palliasses, and I think one or two picture frames; he gave half-a-crown for the sofa; it was only the frame of it, and I think the palliasse cost about 3s.—I saw them taken to 250, Tufnell Park Road—the day after some cheap new canvas was bought in Hoxton, six or eight yards, and a gallon of oil was procured in New North Road—I went to the house on the 11th, about four in the afternoon—the policy there was in the name of Herbert Brown—that night the prisoner saturated the canvas with the paraffin oil, and wrapped it about the furniture, and soaked some men's clothing, and one or two pieces of sheeting; he then produced a piece of common tape, soaked that with oil, and fastened it to the canvas; one end of the tape rested on the floor, to that he attached a very small piece of candle, the lamp was broken, and strewed about the place—the candle was lit by George, and then he, Fred and I left the room—about five minutes afterwards I am the fire, I watched it—I remained with George, Fred went back to the house—on 9th April, 1890, I was asked by Mrs. Culmer to go to 36, Paignton Road, Stamford Hill—George told me that a fire had taken place there; before that I had beard that a fire was to take place there, and about ten days or a fortnight after I saw that a fire had occurred there—I saw a man named Kelly there, the prisoner was there at the time; Kelly and the prisoner took away the salvage; Mrs. Ingram was there, and the carman who moved the furniture—Kelly assisted with Culmer; part of it was taken to 38, Ringcroft Street, Holloway, and the remainder to 13, Madras Place, Holloway—I remember Culmer taking a house in Dalton Street, Camberwell; he went there from Holloway Road—I saw the furniture at Dalton Street; I had seen that furniture at St. John's Road, Hoxton, at Tufnell Park Road, and at 36, Paignton Road; it had been through the fire—a policy was taken out by me at Paignton Road, at Culmer's suggestion, in the name of English for £100 on household furniture, wearing apparel, and so on—
the place was set on fire on 1st June, about two in the morning, by George Culmer—three or four gallons of oil was used, and one or two egg chests—I was in the first floor front room when the fire broke out—there were one or two baskets, some sheeting, and clothing, and one or two pieces of canvas; we ripped up the staircase in various parts, and also a portion of the wooden partition parting the back room from the staircase—on this occasion Culmer suggested that there should be a new departure made; hitherto it had been arranged that every person should leave the house before the fire; then he said, if we stay in the house, it will produce the notion that it was a hairbreadth escape—in this point of view I agreed with him, and when that fire broke out Culmer and his wife escaped by the back room window, and got on to some outhouse to reach the ground—I left by the first floor-front window by the aid of a sheet; I think I sewed a piece of blanket to it—I made a claim for that fire of £94 6s. 3d.; this is it; it is my writing; I simply copied what Calmer had already written—the contents of the place were the property of Culmer, not mine; they had nothing to do with me at all—the claim was made as for my property—that claim was settled for a sum of £75—the fire was supposed to break out in Culmer's portion of the house—I was supposed to be the lodger, renting the first floor front—the fire undoubtedly broke out in his part of the house, and broke through the woodwork; the woodwork having been partly removed—Culmer had £50 of the £75; I had the other £25—in August I took a room at 39, Thorolds Road, Fulham, with George Culmer—with his assistance I brought the furniture from Whitmore Road, Hoxton—a policy was taken out in the name of Frederick Richards; the furniture there was Culmer's, but I represented myself as the owner—that place was set fire to by George Culmer on 20th August—I was with him when the preparation was made for the fire with the oil—it was done in the same way as before—I saw articles brought there which had already been burnt, brought there in a bag—a tape and candle were used as before, a lamp broken and strewed about the place—I remained in the house when the fire took place—I found that the landlady and her son were in the room overhead, and I thought it best to remain in the house—I went to the back of the house, and remained about five minutes—I heard the crackle and the fire breaking out—a man knocked at the door and said the house was on fire, and I then ran up stairs and got the landlady and her son down—I made a claim of £86 in respect of that fire, and received £50 in settlement—Culmer had £34, and I had £16—I owed him a few shillings; of course I gave him the odd shillings—the cheque was paid to me, and I cashed it and divided it—this is the claim I sent in—the value of the property in the house was, I think, about £10.
Cross-examined. I had nothing to do with a fire before Culmer mentioned to me about setting fire to houses—I first communicated with the police on the subject about the end of September, 1890—I did not give information to Inspector Dinney the day Culmer was taken—there was no quarrel with Culmer about money or anything of that sort, I am quite certain—he did not refuse to lend or give me certain money that I wanted—I left Whitmore Road to go through the fire at Thorolds Road—we started in partnership in Whitmore Road; it was not dissolved exactly; it was in this way, when we started there we took in an equal
amount of money; I threw in altogether about £15; he did the same; that money was exhausted; I had no more cash; Culmer supplied what was wanted—I have been in the St. John's Road fire, Dalton Street, and Thorolds Road—in Dalton Street I was on the first floor when the fire actually burst out, and I got out of the window by a sheet and blanket fastened to the bedstead before the actual outbreak; it was all arranged before the outbreak; we got it all ready—I cannot tell what became of the sheeting and blanket; it was waving like a flag, and it went during the fire; it remained there I think when the fire was put out, on the morning certainly, but next day the sheeting had disappeared—the fire broke out about two in the Sunday morning—I returned on the Monday; the sheet had then disappeared—I had attached the sheet to the bedstead; there was a piece of blanket; it was not much—the height of the place was up to the middle of this window from the floor; not quite so high, perhaps—I should say about the height of the top of the first floor; I had to drop some little distance—Culmer was very wide awake at the time the fire broke out; he was at the back of the house; leading off the back room was a small ante-room; through that he and his wife made their escape; prior to the fire I used to sleep in the back room, and he and his wife in the front; after the fire I saw the insurance people as to the claim; I signed the receipt in Culmer's presence, in the name of F. English—the next fire was at Thorolds Road; that was the next on the list—I don't think I was any further advanced in it by that time—I represented myself as the owner of the goods in that case, and got the money paid to me, and I signed the name of Richards; I received £16 out of that—I really can't tell how many times I signed the name of Richards—I only took two names; wait a minute, the first assumed name was English, and the second was F. Richards, no more; I represented myself as a brother of Fred Culmer in Tufnell Park; I did not call myself Culmer, but Frederick Brown—I did not sign anything then except on the occasion I have mentioned; I have always gone by the name of Whitehead—until I met Culmer I had never had anything to do with fifes—I was warehouseman at Perkins and Son, Bermondsey Street—I have known Culmer twelve years; but I had lost sight of him—at the time he introduced the subject to me in October, 1889, I was working with Perkins and Son—I was in that employment eleven years; I gave up it in December, 1889, because of the St. John's Road fire; I had got a few pounds out of that; I cleared something like £20; I had a little more of my own in hand, and I thought I could enlarge on that, go into business for myself, that was why I left the employ—I went into partnership with Culmer in July, 1890—I travelled the country from the beginning of January, 1890, till about the middle, not more; I was taken ill then and I had to return, and I gave it up—I am working for myself now; I am making dentifrice—in 1889 I made jewellery; I started in the early part of 1890—I had some money of course; I bought the stock myself—I was in that line about ten days or a fortnight; I was taken ill and had to give it up—after that I went into dentifrice; I manufacture it myself.
Re-examined. The business we started in Whitmore Road was secondhand furniture—that lasted about six weeks—at the end of that six weeks I went to Thorolds Road. HANNAH MITCHELL. I am unmarried—in November, 1889, I let 133,
St. John's Road, Hoxton, to Whitehead, through a friend; he moved in the next day—I saw the furniture after the fire, not before, only in one room—there was none there when the fire occurred—there was furniture in three rooms, as far as I know.
JAMES GEORGE WHITE . I am a clerk in the Westminster Fire Office, King Street, Covent Garden—Frederick William Whitehead applied to effect an insurance for £100 at 106, Spa Road, Bermondsey, on household goods and effects—the policy was effected, and on 26th November it was transferred from that address to 133, St. John's Road—on 15th December we had notice of a fire having occurred there; I referred it to our assessor—the claim was £103 9s. 2d., the settlement was £63 2s. 6d., and the policy to be cancelled.
EDWIN RADWELL . I am an assessor to the London and Lancashire Insurance Office—in consequence of the fire at 36, Paignton Road, I went and surveyed the place—the fire occurred on 9th April—I went on the 10th—it occurred in a small back bedroom; I examined it, I did not form any opinion as to the cause of the fire; I was not satisfied—a claim of £115 9s. 6d. was made; it was settled by a payment of £62 and the cancelling of the policy—the fire appeared to have been a very fierce one—I do not remember the address of the person insuring—Kelly gave 36, Paignton Road, when the fire occurred—I find here "13, Madras Place, Holloway Road"—I must have got that address from the assured at the time—this is my report on the case—after the fire he must have gone there, and so given me that address.
Cross-examined. The policy was for £100—I went and saw the place that had been burnt—I was not satisfied with the circumstances; I recommended the cancelling of the insurance—I advised the payment of £62—I thought that would probably be the value of the goods destroyed.
Re-examined. In the case of a fierce fire it is difficult to find traces of property such as clothing, you must rely to a great extent upon the circumstances—I could not form an opinion as to how it occurred.
BESSIE EVANS . I am the landlady of 13, Madras Place—the prisoner and his wife rented two rooms from me from March to the latter end of May, 1890—he gave the name of Culmer then—he afterwards gave me the name of Franklin.
ELLEN TRIM . I am the wife of Albert Trim—in August last year I was living at 39, Thorolds Road, Fulham—I let a bedroom on the first floor to a person who gave the name of Richards—at the Police-court I knew him as Whitehead, the witness; the prisoner was with him when he took the room; the rent was 4s. a week—Whitehead occupied the place he was there about ten days, I don't know the date exactly—at the end of that time a fire happened in the room about 10 o'clock, I had gone to bed, I was awoke by my neighbours—I had seen the prisoner and Whitehead come to the house that same afternoon, they had a bag with them, with old things in it, or something of that kind—I can't say how many bags were carried in, but there were bags carried in by both—when the neighbours came and aroused me, Whitehead shut the door in their face, but afterwards he came upstairs, and the people opposite broke the door open—after the fire I found a bag in the room, similar to one of the bags that I saw brought in, and I saw a number of old clothes in the corner of the room—I don't think I noticed any smell in the room when the fire occurred
—I should say the value of the property in the room was not £5—after the fire I saw the broken parts of a lamp, part of it was on the mantel-piece and part on the floor—I saw a large can with paraffin in it, about a gallon can; I could smell that there had been paraffin in it; there was no gas in the house.
Cross-examined. I saw the furniture before the fire; I only opened the door and looked in the room and saw it—I only let them the one room; I am quite sure the prisoner is the man who came with Whitehead and took the room.
WILLIAM FIELD (Recalled). I am clerk to Messrs. Roberts and Radwell, assessors to the London and Lancashire Fire Office—in consequence of a fire at 39, Thorolds Road, I went to make inquiries—I knew that the furniture there had been insured by a man named Richards—I saw Whitehead at the house—a claim was made in respect of that fire of £86 1s. 6d. for furniture, wearing apparel, and so on; this is the claim—it was settled for £50—I produce the acceptance for it signed by Richards, the policy was surrendered.
Cross-examined. I made inquiries as to the cause of the fire, and about the furniture; I did not make inquiries of the landlady—I saw the remnants that were left; from what I saw and was told I advised that £50 would be a fair sum to pay, as far as I could judge—I believe in consequence of my report they paid that amount.
Three witnesses deposed to the prisoner's good character.
GUILTY .— Twelve Years' Penal Servitude.
NEW COURT.—Monday and Tuesday, February 16th and 17th, 1891.
Before Mr. Recorder.
CHARLES L'ENFANT . I am an officer of the London Court of Bankruptcy—I produce the file of proceedings in the defendant's bankruptcy—the petition was filed on August 7th; it was his own petition; it describes him as a furrier, of Great Prescott Street—the liabilities are £14,911 6s. 6d., and the assets £1,062 3s. 6d.—on 28th August Mr. Joseph Politza was appointed trustee—on 29th September Mr. Registrar Link-later made an order to prosecute—he filed his accounts on 29th January, and his first public examination was on September 16th—he was further examined at his own request quite recently.
Cross-examined. The secured creditors are £1,242 13s. 1d., and liabilities, as per list B, £6,018 7s. 5d.—list D gives the names of persons for whom the bankrupt alleges that he is liable—the deficiency account is made up, among other items, of expenses for sales, etc., £400; the lawsuit with Mr. Devas; £1,300 worth of goods carried out at £1,000 loss; and the withdrawal of £1,000 lent by the bankers to his father in January, 1890; and there is the repayment to the party who lent him that sum—the item paid on account of Julius Abraham, £819 7s. 11d., is on another sheet; loss in business, August, 1889, to August, 1890,
£862—the cash account was filed on 29th January, and another on February 12th, by order of the Court—that is on the file; it purports to be a full statement of the receipts and payments from the bankrupt's business from August 7th, 1889, to August, 1890, which is divided into months, and is composed of about twelve sheets.
SOLOMON COHEN . I am a furrier, of South Street, Finsbury—this is my ledger—I find in it that on June 12th last year I purchased some sealskins, here set out, from the prisoner, to the amount of £214—they are described as 90 lobers dyed extra small puffs—puffs are small skins—they are invoiced at 30s., coming to £39 10s.—22 Copper Island dyed at 65s., and two other skins, total £214—I paid for them by this bill for £139 (produced)—I bank at the City Bank, Aldgate, the same bank as the prisoner—I was debited in my account with the amount of that bill, and the balance was paid for by a cheque for £74 10s., payable to Abrahams, and endorsed by him—it has passed through my account—the prisoner came and asked me to buy those goods—I purchased from him, on 26th June at his request, 236 grey puffs at 26s., making £316, or £300 with discount, and gave him the open cheque which, is endorsed by him—it has passed through my account—he asked me for an open cheque—on July 3rd I purchased 64 dyed seal Coppers at 65s., £208, which with discount was reduced to £202 16s.—this is the open cheque for it endorsed by the prisoner, and passed through my account and paid—on 4th July I bought from him 42 Cape skins at 42s. net, £96 12s., and paid with this open cheque, which is endorsed by him—on 7th July I bought of him 48 Copper skins, £180, which with discount came to £178, and 109 white coats at 8s., making £43 12s., and I had to pay a Consul's fee for an affidavit—I sent a crossed cheque by post for £221 12s. which Abrahams gave back to me, and I put on it "Pay cash" at his request—just before 12th July, I bought of him twenty dyed seal Coppers, at 75s., making £75 ditto at 65s. £26; £101 in all—I had not paid for them when he filed his petition, and under advice I have not done so since—on 26th July I purchased goods of him for £48 3s., which I have paid for since his bankruptcy.
Cross-examined. I bought at market prices—I exported a large majority of these skins to New York, and had very serious complaints of two lots, and when they were sold, one lot was sold to me at a loss of 550 dols., and they were dissatisfied' with the lobers—the grey puffs went next, and I had the complaint that they were "a very poor lot, full of shot holes and spear holes, too bad to offer here, and too small to offer by auction"—they said, "We should hesitate about buying them at 16s., and the same with the last lot of lobers, and we think 248. will be enough for them"—I also forwarded some of the sealskins to America, but had no complaints of those; there were only two complaints out of four transactions—I got some Alaskas from the prisoner—there might be a slight complaint of some of them—on 17th July I had a telegram, "The small seals are entirely too high; buy no more seals"—there was not a complaint from my customer in New York about all the things I sent.
Re-examined. I shipped the articles to New York for sale in the market;
some of them were sold at a profit—they were never made up—I had frequently bought of the prisoner before.
WILLIAM COLEGATE . I am book-keeper to Blundell Brothers, of 157, Cheapside—these invoices relate to goods sold to the prisoner on July 11th; I gave him this open cheque the same day for £120 12s.—the invoices make up that amount—he signed the statement W. C. 2 in my presence—on June 27th we purchased goods from him amounting to £33 158., and on July 4th, £41 5s., making £120 13s., and paid him by cheque—we did not pay him any cheque for £69 16s. in 1890.
Cross-examined. He occasionally invoiced a larger quantity of goods than we could accept, and we returned the difference—we had dealings with him for some ten years before July 11th—he was in a fair way of business—he came to me and said that he wanted money to pay his workmen.
EDWARD HAYNES . I am cashier to Munt, Brown, and Co, of Wood Street—on 11th July we paid the prisoner this cheque for £147 2s. for goods supplied by him—it is crossed, but has been altered into "Pay cash" at his request—he gave no reason for that—it was given for goods of which this is the invoice, after giving credit for some small returns—the receipt purports to be signed by Abrahams—I cannot remember seeing him sign it—I never paid a cheque for £47 14s. in respect of that transaction—the goods were supplied between May 6th and July 9th.
BENJAMIN MARCHANTON . I am clerk to Messrs. Brookfield and Aicheson, of Manchester—the defendant has had large transactions with them for some years—on 23rd July we remitted to him a cheque for £160 9s. for goods we had purchased—attached to it is an invoice of manufactured capes, which were given for it—we never made him any payment of £1 9s. 3d. in respect of those goods.
Cross-examined. He is a very respectable man for anything I know to the contrary.
CHARLES DENT . I am clerk to Larkins, Gibson, and Co., 20, Moseley Street, Manchester—I produce two invoices, dated 4th and 11th July, for £34 2s. 6d. for fur capes supplied to us by the prisoner; we paid for them on 24th July by this cheque on the London and Westminster Bank for £65 7s. 6d. sent by post—it has on the back, "L. Abrahams" and "Chas. Woolrouch"—it was crossed—this is the prisoner's receipt.
ARCHIBALD ROUSE . I am in the employ of Holmes, Terry, and Co., of Manchester—I produce a cheque for £14 16s., signed by Mr. Terry, payable to Lazarus Abrahams, and posted to him on 7th August—it came back afterwards, purporting to be endorsed by him—the receipts dated August 9th.
GEORGE THOMAS FORTON . I am cashier to S. and J. Watts and Co., of Manchester—they purchased goods of the prisoner last year and paid for them by these two cheques of July 16th and 19th for £12 19s. 9d. and £22 19s. (produced)—they are drawn by Mr. Watts; Lazarus Abrahams name is not on them; our custom is only to put the folio of the ledger—they bear the stamp of the London and County Bank, Shoreditch.
CHARLES WALWORK . I am cashier to Nelson and Co., of Manchester—I produce a cheque for £10 2s., dated 12th July, drawn by Mr. Nelson and given to the prisoner for goods purchased by him—it bears the stamp of the London and County Bank, Shoreditch Branch.
produce a cheque for £39 11s., dated 24th July, drawn by Mr. Lewis in favour of the prisoner—it purports to be endorsed by him—it is also endorsed "Charles Woolrouch" and it is for goods purchased by our firm—it bears the stamp of the London and Westminster Bank, Eastern Branch.
JOSHUA GASNER . I am a furrier, of 30, Commercial Road, East—this cheque for £200, dated 17th July, was drawn by the prisoner in my favour, and is endorsed by me—it is an open cheque—I have done business with the prisoner for eight or ten years; he simply put down a cheque and said, "Endorse me that cheque"—I asked him the reason—he said, "I ask you to do me that little favour"—it was not written then, it was perfectly blank—I did not see him fill it up afterwards, but I know his writing; it is filled up by him—I never received any portion of the proceeds of it—I cannot swear to the date, but it must have been in July—I only did that for him once—I went there to buy some cuttings—I asked him the reason—he said, "I ask you to do it; you ought not to ask me any questions. "
ROBERT HENRY HAMMOND . I am a ledger-keeper at the Aldgate Branch of the City Bank—I produce a certified extract of the prisoner's account from the books of the bank—I have compared it with the books; it is my own writing. (The certificate teas here put in)—one entry relates to Cohen's account, and one to Abrahams'—Cohen's is for £300 paid over the counter in gold—this cheque, dated July 4th, for £202 16s., is Mr. Cohen's; it was paid all in gold—this cheque for £96, dated 5th July, is Mr. Cohen's, and was paid in gold—I know the prisoner's writing; this is his endorsement—this cheque of 7th July, for £221 12s., was paid on the 9th by us in gold and silver; it is endorsed by the prisoner—this is an acceptance of Cohen's, of 12th July, for £179; it was paid with a £5 note, 20,909, three £10 notes, 49,952 to 49,954, and one £100 note, 56,531, and the balance £4 in cash—this is the defendant's open cheque for £200, payable to the order of J. Gasner, and purports to be endorsed by him; it was paid with two £100 notes, 60,006 and 60,007, August 13th, 1889—after June 11th there was a payment into the prisoner's account of £50 on 2nd July, and £500 in a lump on 24th July—we paid this acceptance for £490 to the prisoner all in notes, one £200 note, 08,397, two £100 notes, 67,577 and 67,578, one £50 note, 22,318, and two £5 notes—the acceptor was Israelovitch—I do not know him.
Cross-examined. The entries to the customer's credit in this pass-book are in the writing of the employés of the bank; I know the writing—£85 3s. was paid in on July 3rd; that was made up of sundry cheques—there are only two payments in of cash in July. (Several entries of payments of gold in July were put in)—Israelovitch's acceptance, £490, is debited to the account in July.
Re-examined. £1,050 was payments in cheques as distinguished from gold and silver.
CHARLES JOHN WILLIAMS . I am bank-note inspector at the Bank of England—I produce a £5 note, 20,909, February 11th, 1890, which was paid in on August 1st to the account of Mr. Raffaelli—the three £10 notes, 49,952, 53 and 54, are still outstanding, and so is the £200 note, 08,937 of January 1st, 1890—I produce a £100 note, 69,557, dated 13th August, 1889, paid in on 15th November by the Central Bank Head Office—it bears the stamp "Central, Whitechapel"
—the £100 note, 69,578, is still outstanding—I produce a £50 note 22,319, dated 13th September, 1889, paid in on 28th July, 1890, in exchange for a post bill—the £20 note, 02,514, January 4th, 1890, paid in on 25th. July, 1890, to the account of Ralph Raffaelli, is still outstanding, and so are the two £100 notes, 60,006 and 7, of 13th August, 1889.
Cross-examined. Notes are sometimes many years in circulation—the average life of a £5 note is about a week.
GEORGE WILLIAM ROSE . I am cashier to Bailey, Bruce, and Co., bankers—this cheque for £120 13s. is drawn by Blundell Brothers in favour of Lazarus Abrahams—I handed the money across the counter in gold and silver—I cannot say who to—it bears the endorsement of Lazarus Abrahams—I also paid this cheque for £12 3s. in cash over the counter on 24th July—it is endorsed "L. Abrahams. "
FRANCIS MALLION . I am a cashier at the Princes Street Branch of the London Joint Stock Bank—this cheque for £147 2s. is drawn by Munt, Brown, and Company, and dated July 11th, 1890; I cashed it, and gave £140 in gold and £7 2s. in silver; it is endorsed "L. Abrahams"—this cheque of July 24th, 1890, for £39 11s. is drawn by Spreckley, White, and Lewis; it was paid through the Bankers' Clearing House—it is endorsed, "L. Abrahams" and "Chas. Woolrouch. "
MR. HANSE. I am a bill clerk in the London and County Bank, Shoreditch Branch—this cheque for £12 18s. 9d., dated July 16th, 1890, was paid through the Clearing House, and credited to the customer who paid it in, Joshua Gasner—this other cheque for £22 19s., of July 19th, 1890, was also paid through the Clearing House, and credited to Joshua Gasner—they are drawn by Watts and endorsed "L. Abrahams"—they are payable to a number—this cheque for £15 2s. 9d. was cleared through the Clearing House; it is drawn by Hugh Davis and Company in favour of L. Abrahams, and is endorsed "L. Abrahams"—it was placed to the credit of Joshua Gasner—the cheque for £10 2s. is dated July 10th, 1890, drawn by C. Nelson in favour of L. Abrahams, and placed to the credit of Joshua Gasner.
JACOB HARRIS . I was traveller to Abraham Julius, the prisoner's brother, up to August last—I received these two cheques for £91 15s. and £64 12s., one from Thomas Jones and the other from Barrow and Kendal, of Liverpool, on behalf of my employer, and handed the prisoner the £64 12s. cheque on Sunday morning, 20th July, and the £91 15s. one, on the Tuesday following—the wages at Julius' were paid every Friday evening; the money came from Mr. Darnell, of Kingsland Road, by cheque—he is one of Mr. Julius' customers, and I cashed the cheque every Friday at Mr. Darnell's bank, but these two particular ones I handed to Mr. Abrahams.
Cross-examined. I collected these two cheques with Mr. Julius' authority—he knew of my having the £64 cheque—I did not get possession of it unknown to him, nor did Mr. Lazarus insist that I should give it to him, that he should give it to his brother—I was sent for it—I was not found out by the prisoner, nor did I hand it back to him that lie might restore it—I did not go for the £91 cheque, I took it to Mr. James at Mr. Julius' order—Mr. James did not ask that it should be made to bearer, nor did I ask him—I do not know that it was stopped—Mr. Julius directed me to write to Messrs. Barrow and Kendal for the
second cheque, on one of his own billheads, and I asked them to send it to my private house, which was done, and I opened the letter—Mr. Lazarus did not come to me and demand the cheque—I was charged with the theft of a horse and cart; I do not know the date—the prosecutor was supposed to be Israelovitch; it was investigated and dismissed, and after that I came forward—I have an uncle named Solomons; he is a creditor of the prisoners for, I believe, £300—I did not say that if he would pay the debt in full my feeling would be friendly towards him; I never spoke to him nor did I say that if not I would do all I possibly could against him—I do not remember taking any of Mr. Julius' goods—I did not have them packed up and removed—several Solomons were employed by Mr. Abrahams, and probably Abraham Solomons was one—I do not recollect telling him to pack up some things belonging to my master or to make my people some boots, nor did he make them up and give them to me; nor did I tell him not to say anything about it, for if he did I would manage him—I might know him if I saw him—Aaron Green is one of the finishers on the premises—I used not to take stock received from Solomon to him to finish during the holidays—that is Green (pointing)—he used to make stuff up under my instructions, but I did not give it to him to finish—I put my name on Barrow's cheque—I have endorsed Mr. Julius' cheques ever since I went there—I cannot say whether it was stopped—this one is endorsed in Mr. Julius' own writing, and not also by me—it was exchanged for another, to my knowledge, that was to the order of Mr. Julius, and endorsed by me (for £64 12s.); they said it was not Mr. Julius' signature, and it was my signature; the boy said, "Father says go and get another cheque"; his son was in the shop when I went for the cheque—I cannot say why Julius did not endorse the first cheque—I was never charged by Julius with robbing him, I was never taken to the station.
Re-examined. I was the principal witness against Julius for defrauding his creditors and committing perjury; he pleaded guilty to all those matters last Sessions—he was taken in custody about that time—it was a few days before that that I was charged with stealing a horse and cart; it was investigated by Mr. Montagu Williams, and I was discharged.
ROBERT REEVES . I am ledger-keeper at the Eastern Branch of the London and Westminster Bank—this cheque for £160 9s., of 23rd July drawn by Brookfield and Aicheson in favour of L. Abrahams, and endorsed L. Abrahams and Charles Woolrouch, went to the credit of Charles Woolrouch, and so did this cheque of 24th July, 1890, for £39 11s., drawn by Spreckley, White, and Lewis in favour of L. Abrahams, and endorsed L. Abrahams and Charles Woolrouch.
ALFRED LANE PEARCE . I am a clerk in the Chief Official Receiver's office—I produce the file of proceedings in this matter—on 2nd September I examined the prisoner, and obtained answers from him to certain printed questions—he read them over and signed his answers—this is the prisoner's pass book; I made these pencil notes on the last page on the debit side during the examination, and afterwards made a report—he said that the £200 on 17th July was for goods purchased from Gasner in 1889, and that the £490 to Israelovitch was a bill for money lent about Christmas, 1889.
I was employed by the trustee to investigate the prisoner's books and papers, and made a careful investigation of them from January, 1890, to August 7th—during 1890 he incurred debts for goods supplied to him on credit amounting to about £7,496 17s., and by reference to his banker's book I found that he paid for goods purchased about £490 9s. 11d.—that would make the total purchases roughly about £8,000—his sales during that period amounted to £4,700, out of which £890 16s. 2d. worth of goods were returned to him, leaving the net sales about £3,800. (The witness went through a long analysis of the prisoner's accounts.)
Cross-examined. I never heard of the account of February 12th till I came into Court to-day; I was not aware that it was on the file—I came to the conclusion that there had been very bad book-keeping, and that there were incorrect entries in the books—there are two entries in the ledger which are not to be found in the day-book, and which do not agree with the documents handed to me for verification—I have a summary of the whole matter here—my notes were marked as an exhibit in the case—there are occasional entries of amounts in the ledger, where there are no dates attached, and in many instances not balanced—there are credits in the ledger which when I came to trace them in the pass-book when the amounts agreed the dates did not, and they are amounts as large as £200, £140, £50, and £500—having investigated the books, I am unable to say whether the payments are largely in excess of the receipts, though I endeavoured to do so—according to the ledger the cash received between January and July was £3,030 4s. 3d., and not £3,330—the returnsare £3,042 7s. 3d., as shown by the ledger—the books show up to November 14th receipts about £9,894 1s. 1d., and payments about £10,131 1s. 5d., but I have not the figures before me—my memory servos me that I gave that on the amount paid into the banker's account, and drawn out—assuming those figures to be correct, that would leave payments over receipts of about £200—I cannot say that it was £100, but there was a large amount received which did not appear in the ledger—according to the banker's pass book there was an excess of payments over receipts—I had considered the. question of the wages which he would have to pay away; the cheques drawn in the name of Abrahams were sufficient in my mind to be cheques for wages; they amounted to £1,000 in six months, and I suppose that represented the prisoner's drawings and for wages—there was no item before me professing to represent what he paid away for wages—I saw papers stating that he drew £400 a year for his household expenses—I found a small memorandum-book of paid work amounting to twenty shillings a week—I do not know that he employed eight cutters when he was very busy, or thirty to forty sewers, or two nailers, or four machinists—there is no item carried out with reference to the payment of wages, unless it is under the head of "Drawn by Abrahams"—there was no bill-book, but there was a book in which I discovered one or two entries relating to bills—I have discovered a book since November, in which a grew number of transactions are entered connected with bills—I have not examined the books, because I examined the bills, which I think safer—I do not think any examination of that book would make matters clearer—I should be sorry to prejudice the prisoner, as I do not think it would
have helped me—when I was examined on the 10th and 20th November I said that the receipts were £11,715 11s. 5d., as against disbursements £10,334 0s. 10d.—there was no item for wages or household expenses, both are included in "Abrahams"'—on February 2nd an accountant, on behalf of the prisoner, had made out an account—I had notes of my own figures—I made the balance £197 by the banker's pass-book.
Re-examined. The prisoner filed a statement of affairs, which I had before I was examined before the Magistrates; it was filed on August 20th—he was advised by the Registrar to file a cash account for the twelve months preceding his bankruptcy, but I never saw it—I heard that he had filed one on the eve of his prosecution—in the account showing that at the least he had to account for £1,200 received by him in July, I gave him credit for £300 wages which were in his account—I entirely accepted that and the other figures which I had no vouchers for—these bills, in my opinion, will not at all account for the bank notes and gold which seem to have disappeared—there is about £14,000 received by him and not accounted for by his books or paid into his account—the figures I gave Mr. Kisch before the Magistrate referred to the pass-book, showing that the disbursements exceeded the receipts—several bills have no dates in the books, but on one page I see August, 1887—forty-two bills are entered after 1887. (The shorthand transcript of the prisoner's examination in bankruptcy was here put in and extracts read.)
DAVID S. DAVIS . I am one of the firm of Fenn, Davis, and Company—this cheque for £ 15 2s. 9d. was drawn by our cashier and signed by me—it is payable to L. Abrahams, and bears his endorsement, and no other.
JOHN EDWARD REMMINGTON . I am a leather merchant, of Exchange Buildings, Market Street—prior to January, 1890, I had sold leather to Abraham Julius, the prisoner's brother—I had a conversation with him in December, after which I saw the prisoner and asked him if it was a fact that his brother had made £300 profit on his business that year—he said that it was so, and he was in the habit of going through his brother's books every week—after that I increased the credit to Julius—the prisoner said, "I will accept for all the purchases my brother makes of you, put him on the very best footing you can, it is as good as trusting me," or words to that effect—he sent me a letter stating, "I agree to accept for my brother Julius what he may purchase"—I sold goods to Julius down to July 11th, and received these eleven bills (produced) in payment, amounting to £1,200, which were accepted by Lazarus—I received this document from Lazarus, because I desired it: "April 14th, 1890: I accept the entire responsibility of all acceptances which my brother Julius draws on me and hands to you"—prior to January, 1890, I had not supplied one-third of the goods which I did subsequently; I increased the supply in consequence of the conversation I had with Mr. Abrahams at my place in January, prior to the first letter
Cross-examined. I had two guarantees from the prisoner prior to January, 1890, the first in January, 1888, and the second six or eight months afterwards—I supplied a considerable quantity of goods between the first and second guarantees—I have been paid hundreds and hundreds of pounds by each of them—I was always prepared to give him credit to a certain amount—those large payments extended over a long period
that was not one of the reasons which induced me to give him increased credit.
Re examined. The credit I give him one year was £450.
WILLIAM CHARLES SMAILE . I carry on business with Mr. Peach, at 7A, Gloucester Street, City—we supplied the prisoner with goods prior to July last year, and about £400 was owing to us in July—I communicated with the prisoner, and he called on me on June 17th and July 8th—I told him the account was larger than it had ever been before, and I wanted to know his position—he said, "I have never been so busy as I am now, or doing so well; I have very large orders from wholesale houses, and will pay you next month the whole amount as soon as I can get the goods delivered"; that was £300 or £400—he begged me not to stop his credit, and said that he was perfectly solvent; and I lot him buy further goods to the amount of just over £90; I would not have done so if it had not been for his absolute certainty about his position.
Cross-examined. I have done business with him not quite four years, to the extent of £1,500 or £1,600—he paid all that he owed me, except for the goods he had this year—my debt in this bankruptcy is about £450—I did not write him a letter saying that I had a cheap parcel of goods; my traveller may have called on him from time to time, and done his best to sell goods—the conversation was in July, 1893, in consequence of a letter I wrote to him saying that his account was heavier than it had ever been before, and requesting him to come and answer some questions—I did not have a specially cheap parcel of goods—I heard the evidence at the Police-court, but I have given evidence to-day for the first time—I am not mixing up anything which I heard the witnesses say; I made an affidavit many months ago when I tried to make the man a bankrupt—I did not succeed, because you got Justin front of us by ten minutes—MESSRS. Pritchard and Englefield prepared the affidavit—this is it, but I am under the impression that I made another, stating the facts, I cannot be certain—I have been in communication with the trustee and the other creditors.
Re-examined. I was about to present a petition to make the prisoner a bankrupt, and instructed Messrs. Pritchard and Englefield—I found out that he hid filed a petition ten minutes before mine was ready—this is an affidavit of my debt.
JOSEPH POLITZER . I am one of the firm of Phillips, Politzer and Co., of 35, Queen Street, and am the trustee in this bankruptcy—on 8th July last the prisoner called on me and proposed to buy certain matgolian skins for £255 15s.—while he was negotiating for the price I was compelled to go out, and on my return I found that the skins had been sold to him on four months' credit—as he owed us £700 before that, and the goods had gone, I sent and had the cart called back, and they came into the house again—I then caused a memorandum to be written to the prisoner, requesting him to call on me—he did so, and I said that I understood he had made a further purchase in our warehouse that morning, and I found that his account was about fully as much as I cared to give him; I should like to hear from him what his position was—he said his position was perfectly sound and good—I said that he had had a lawsuit at the end of the previous year, which must have cost him a good deal of money, and that made me feel that I ought to ascertain how he stood—he said it only cost him £300 or £400, and had not
interfered much with his business, in fact, he sail, "If these were goods I could obtain at public sales I should not come to you at all, as I could buy them at a public sale for cash"—I said, "If you have cash for a public sale you might find some cash for me as well"—he said, "Well, will give you some cash, say, £100, that is £70 down, and £30 at the end of the month, in July"—I then agreed to let him have the goods, and my porter brought back £60 instead of £70—I let him have the goods in consequence of his statement that his position was perfectly sound and good—I subsequently saw Mr. Rice, one of the creditors, at his office, and in consequence of a communication from him, I sent for the prisoner on 17th July, nine days afterwards, and told him there were rumours in the City that he was about to stop payment, and as he owed me a large amount he had better give me a straightforward answer whether there was any truth in the rumours or not—he replied, "There is not any truth in it whatever, I am perfectly solvent; the rumours were spread by two boys who I have discharged, and I am prepared to pay any of my accounts with an extra discount of 10 per cent. "—I asked if he had the money to do it—he said, "Yes, by sending out statements, and allowing an extra discount to my customers, I can obtain some money"—I advised him to do so, as it would put a stop to the conversation in the City, which would be apt to injure his credit—he called a private meeting of his creditors about a fortnight afterwards, July 31st—I have received proofs of debt against his estate of about £7,400, and the invoices of goods supplied to him by the creditors have come into my possession, and among them several of Messrs. Martin and Son, between 20th May and 1st July; they are of seals—my firm supplied him with 100 seals—I have an invoice here for 90 sealskins from Messrs,. Muhlberg, dated June 2nd, and two of 2nd June and 6th July, for goods supplied by Messrs. Uhlman—on 3rd June he bought 90 skins for 40s. from Mr. Muhlberg, and sold them within ten days at considerably under that price—his business was not that of selling skins in the whole, but purchasing them to manufacture; he had no business to sell skins at all—the sales to Cohen were of skins in the whole—the skins which were in his business at the date of his bankruptcy realised about £1,100—he stated that they cost £2,000.
Cross-examined. He has put down £7,087 for the goods which I offered for tender—£3,787 17s. 11d. would not represent the total amount which he would have realised according to his books—I cannot tell you whether £2 8s. was the proper. price for the muff-bags, I am not a manufacturer, and his books are no guide; I did not waste my time with them, I looked at them to see—I sold the muff-bags in a lump, which he had bought at 24s. or 23s.—I employed the best men I could to do it; two or three of the members of the committee who were in the trade—the goods were submitted for tender to the largest houses, and the highest bidder got them; there was no reserve—I have had transactions with him under three years—he paid me about £700 in 1889, I do not think it was £1,000, and then I gave him a further credit of £900, and did not get my money; that is my claim—I had no conversation with him about securing my debt, I was in the Isle of Wight; my brother or partners may have done so—I may have said something to the prisoner about it being troublesome for him if he did not find security; I did not say anything about making it hot for him.
Re-examined. I employed a chartered accountant to overhaul the books—the prisoner came to me on the day I was appointed trustee, and asked me if I would allow my brother to leave the office; I said that I had no secrets, and declined to send my brother out; he then offered me £500 if I would work for him and not for the creditors—I said I thought it a very nice affair, and immediately went to my solicitor, and a committee meeting was held at which I made a statement.
GEORGE RICE . I am a fur skin dyer in Great Prescott Street—I have had transactions with the prisoner for about three years prior to his bankruptcy—I know Mr. Politzer, and have done business with him—I had a conversation with him on 19th July, in consequence of which the prisoner was sent for—Mr. Politzer asked him if there was any truth in the rumours which he had heard as to his position: he asked for particulars of the rumours—Mr. Politzer said he had heard he was making large purchases of goods on credit, and he had been asked as to his position by other customers—he said there was no truth in the rumours as to his position being at all unsound—he admitted purchasing a large parcel of seals, but he was quite able to pay all his creditors when their accounts became due, and he repeatedly assured us both that he was perfectly sound and could pay twenty shillings in the pound—I was induced to give him further credit, being perfectly satisfied with his assurances.
Cross-examined. Two or three days before this interview I spoke to a merchant; it did not amount to a reference, but the merchant supplied goods to the prisoner in consequence—twelve months before this I supplied the prisoner with £300 to meet a draft, as he had very heavy payments—he carried on business fairly and honestly—I used to send goods to him—I am a creditor for £250, all unsecured—I was a creditor for £450—I hold goods of his; I got some of them three months and some four months before the date of the petition from day to day; some would be in my possession a week, some a fortnight and some three months—I did not get £100 worth of goods into my possession after the interview, sent to me to dye—I tried to realise them by surrendering them to the receiver—I got £200 last month from Pritchard and Englefield after I had given my evidence—I was called as a witness at the very earliest period—the prisoner asked me not to send him any goods, as he had been served with a writ one day before he filed his petition.
Re-examined. I claimed to detain the goods which the trustee has paid me for, having a lien upon them—I had no reason to doubt the prisoner's solvency.
CHARLES PAULING . I represent the firm of A. Servant; my office is at 26, Cheapside, and as their agent I have supplied goods to the defendant—in July last he was indebted to the firm about £600—he called on me on July 7th, to buy a further amount of goods value £240—I told him that as he owed £600, I could not let him have any more except for cash, or part cash—he said he had plenty of cash, and could easily pay our account if he wished, but he intended to keep the money for other purposes, in proof of which he produced a paying-in slip of the same morning showing that he had just paid in about £500—I suggested that lie should pay us our account and I would sell him further goods on credit—he said that he required the money for other purposes, but would pay me at the end of the month for the goods he wished to buy,
200 dozen brown rabbit skins, which I agreed to in consequence of his statement that he had plenty of money and could pay his account.
Cross-examined. What he said was, "I can pay all cash if I wish"; and he produced his paying-in slip—that statement, and that he had money in the bank, induced me to give him credit—I do not deny that he paid the money into the bank; I believe it is true—he had been trying to buy the goods for several days—I am paid by salary and commission—I did not urge him to buy the goods, and I do not believe I sent him a telegram urging him to do so—he did not decline to take them on any terms—he wished to buy them—I was blamed to a certain extent by my employer about these goods—I never forced them on the prisoner—I have said, "After the failure I got blamed for giving him credit"—my debt was between £700 and £800.
SIMON WHARMAN . I carry on business at 119, Houndsditch—I first saw Mr. Serin, of the firm of Serin and Cohen, about May, 1889, and again at the end of August or September—he was then on his return journey to the Cape—I have had business communications with his firm since, but I do not think I saw him in England in July, 1890.
GEORGE RICE (Re-examined by MR. KISCH). I believe the goods in my possession, which were sold to the trustee, were 1,150 lama skin, 1,000 musquash skins, and 47 beaver skins—I very much doubt their being bought of Mr. Politzer—you cannot take the average of them if you have one thousand good ones and ten thousand bad ones—I charged 1s. or 1s. 6d. each for dying the lamas, but many of them were not dyed, the etings were 3d. or 4d.—I did not try to sell them elsewhere; I surrendered them to the trustee for the benefit of the estate.
CHARLES HENRY BURRELL . I am assistant to C. W. Martin and Son, and have had some years' experience in the cutting and manufacture of sealskins—I have seen the invoices of sales supplied to the prisoner during the year 1890, and a journal and day-book—I heard Mr. Cohen's evidence at the Police-court, and made notes of it—twenty-one skins would not make 650 bags, it would take over eighty skins.
Cross-examined. I am assistant to a skin merchant and dresser, and have been with him since 1885, but I give this evidence from experience I have had since 1863 with wholesale furriers—I do not know whether there was any stock in hand at the beginning of the year—I have heard of tapeing, that is the insertion of narrow pieces of tape between the skins; it is more used for the tails; it lessens the quantity of skin used, but it does not lessen the price, because it is an expensive operation; but a greater number of bags would be produced from the same quantity of skin—I have not given my evidence on assumed facts, nor have I assumed that they were made out of one piece of skin; the prominent parts of the bags are made from the sound portions of the skins, and small shreds are used to make the end of each bag—I think it is fair to assume that out of this parcel of skins there might be twenty-one left, considering what other goods he made up; it would not be impossible.
By the JURY. Taking the whole parcel of skins bought by the prisoner, and the total amount of his sales, he could not produce the goods he sold out of the parcel of skins and the offal that was left and the twenty-one skins; that would not produce the number of bags; if they had been
made up they would have been unsaleable goods—it could not have been done by the process of tapeing.
By MR. KISCH. 666 skins were bought; 16 cloaks were made up, which would take 45 skins, three for each cloak; 182 skins were sold to Fuller; that makes 227; the prisoner sold 532 to Cohen, which left 132 to be accounted for; 15 sealskin jackets were made; that would take 45 skins, and 144 bags, of which there is evidence of sale on July 4th, and one seal cape, which I take to be made from the pieces, and these were made up goods in stock which appeared to be sold—I made up this catalogue; the goods I allowed 50 skins for are eight solid seal capes, made from skins as distinguished from pieces; they would take not exceeding two skins; it might be considerably less—the 50 skins is not a guess; I work it out—I allow 45 skins for 15 jackets, 18 for the bags, and 52 for the stock made up, and that brings the quantity down to 21—I allow 54 skins for the 174 muff-bags, and 18 for the 12 dozen—if the bags were complete the addition would not be made in sealskin, but in other material.
GUILTY.— Judgment respited.
OLD COURT.—Tuesday, February 17th, 1891.
Before Mr. Justice Charles.
MESSRS. BESLEY and GILL Prosecuted, and MR. ORMSBY Defended.
MARTIN GEORGE DEVITT . I am clerk to Mr. Simpson, an estate agent, in New Kent Road—on 16th September the prisoner came to take a house, No. 2, Portland Road, Seven Sisters' Road—she gave the name of Louisa Corrie; she took the house and paid a deposit of ten shillings—I asked her for a reference, and she referred to Mr. Wheeler, 29, Stanley Street, Battersea, and the name of Winch, Lorrimore Road, Camberwell—I wrote to Wheeler and received this answer—the prisoner then remained in possession of the house on a yearly agreement; the rent was £2 8s. 6d. a month—it was a six roomed house—she signed the agreement in the name of Louisa Corrie—a fire, took place there in October—she paid no rent.
JOSEPH WILLIAM SHEPHERD . I am one of the London Salvage Corps at Upper Street, Islington, Station—on 10th October, 1890, I took possession of 2, Portland Road, in consequence of a fire having happened there—I saw the prisoner there, and she told me that about ten o'clock she had left a candle burning on the table close to her bed; that she went out for a short time, and when she came back she found her house had been on fire—the bedroom at the back was burnt out completely, and the folding doors of the front sitting room were burnt right off, and the best part of the furniture was damaged—the fire in the back room ground floor had been a fierce one—I saw part of a paraffin lamp outside the window—it had been thrown out of the window into the front garden and was broken—I could not detect any smell of paraffin on the 10th.
Cross-examined. I did not see anything suspicious about the place—I
have had considerable experience of fires—if I had seen anything to arouse my suspicions I should have reported; I did nothing.
JAMES WALLIS . I am a clerk in the County Fire Office, Regent Street—on 9th October, 1890, I received this letter from 29, Stanley Street, signed Louisa Corrie—I afterwards received this second letter, dated 19th August—that was replied to, and I then got a proposal form from her to insure her furniture for £125—the premium was 2s. 10d.—I received that in this letter—in consequence of that proposal a policy was issued—on 10th October I received notice of a fire at 2, Portland Road—in the meantime the policy at Stanley Street had been transferred there; a claim was made; that was put into the hands of Price and Gibbs, who act for the office—the claim was for £136; that was settled by a payment of £115—I produced the receipt for it, signed Louisa Corrie.
CHARLES HENRY GIBBS . I live at 262, Kennington Road—I am assessor to the County Fire Office—in consequence of instructions I went to 2, Portland Road on the 11th—it was a six-roomed house, and appeared to be furnished only on the ground floor, except one room over the kitchen—the fire appeared to have broken out in the two rooms on the ground floor, which communicate—I did not see the prisoner on my first visit—I afterwards saw her at my office—she stated that she had left the house about half-past eight to visit a friend, and when she came back she found the fire had occurred, and the engines were still there—she said she had left a paraffin lamp on a table in the back room, used as a bedroom—she suggested that the lamp might have exploded, or been upset, a cat might have upset it—after I saw her at my office a list of the articles destroyed or damaged was furnished, and I went to the house again and saw her; I asked her for a list, and she supplied it—the claim was £137 3s. 6d.—I met her again at the premises and went through the claim, and finally it was arranged at £115; she agreed to accept that—the fire had burnt through the two rooms; they were severely damaged.
WILLIAM WILLIAMSON (Detective-Sergeant). I have seen the letter purporting to be written by Mr. Wheeler as a reference for Mrs. Corrie, also the letter from Stanley Street with reference to the insurance; to the best of my belief they are in the same handwriting. (The letters were read.)
MR. GIBBS (continued). I produce the agreement to accept £115, dated October 13th, signed Louisa Corrie.
Cross-examined. I saw the remains of the fire; I made the settlement with the prisoner—I thought £115 a fair compensation—I have had considerable experience in fires for years.
Re-examined. I saw remains of the majority of the items; the remains of wearing apparel and so on were not to be seen; there was a piano, chairs, and tables; what I did see were damaged—I had no suspicion that they had been set on fire—whatever the amount insured she would not get more than the damage actually done.
CHARLES BROWN . I live in High Street, Walthamstow, I know the prisoner—I removed her furniture and her daughters from Portland Road to Gerand Street, Bow, by order of the daughter—some of them bad been damaged by fire, kitchen utensils, bedroom furniture and a piano, which had been blackened by fire.
I saw them in the evening—I saw one of them at Southwark Police-court—I know her as Mrs. Wheeler, I was told by Brown that was her name; I did not know her name till then—they said they had been over the house, 20, Gerand Street, and paid 13s., one week's deposit—I asked for a reference, and it was given at an address at Walworth, which I have not at present—they took possession about nine that night; I did not see what they brought with them; the only article I saw was a palliasse—I think I could identify the person whose name was given as Brown. (Looking round the Court)—the prisoner is the elder woman who was in company with the other that gave the name of Brown.
GEORGE HAMPSHIRE . I am a member of the Salvage Corps at Shaftesbury Avenue—I went to 20, Gerand Street, Bow, with Inspector Williamson, and there saw various articles of furniture; I can't say the date exactly, I think it was in December last year—I was asked to look at the furniture—I saw a piano, a timepiece, some dresses, and other articles—pretty nearly all the furniture I saw there I had seen at 89, Great Dover Street, Borough, at the fire there—there were a lot of flimsy articles and fancy goods.
Cross-examined. In going through the claim with Mr. Roberts, I recognised the piano as having celluloid keys instead of ivory—in checking the claim I marked the keys to see which they were, I marked two with my penknife, and I explained it to Mr. Williamson—probably any other salvage man may have done the same thing, but not with the same keys; I marked six or seven on the left hand side of the piano—I marked two keys next to one another, and there was no name on it, there had been one, but it was rubbed off—the piano was damaged by the fire in Great Dover Street; it was pretty nearly in the same condition when I saw it again: if it had been in another fire since I should have expected to find it more damaged, especially if the fire was fierce; I should not expect to see much of the piano then.
Re-examined. I have not the slightest doubt it was the same piano; I have no idea of the value of the things I saw at Gerand Street.
WILLIAM WILLIAMSON (Re-called). On 5th December, 1890, I went with Sergeant Bush to 29, Stanley Street, Battersea; I had a warrant with me—I there saw the prisoner, and some friends of hers—I read the warrant to her; it was for being concerned with others for conspiracy and fraud, to deprive Fire offices of money—she said, "I did not conspire with ail those men; if they had taken my advice they would have had no fires"—I told her she would be further charged with wilfully and maliciously setting fire to No. 89, Great Dover Street, Borough, in the name of Kate Cranley—the name of Wheeler was on the warrant; I addressed her as Mrs. Wheeler—she said, "It is false"—I showed her the paper, and said, "You see it is signed Kate Cranley; she said, "Yes," that is my signature, and the body of the claim is my handwriting"—she was taken to Southwark Police-station and charged with conspiracy—she made no reply.
HENRY CORNISH EVANS . I am an auctioneer and estate agent, of 92, Hoxton Street, Shoreditch—in September, 1886, the prisoner applied to me to take the house 11, Gerand Street, Bow—she gave the name of Franklin—she gave me references, but I have not been able to find them—I accepted her as a tenant at a rent of 13s. a week; it was a six-roomed
house—she went into possession in September—she remained there until a fire occurred on 20th November.
FRANK STANLEY PRICE . I am assessor to the County Fire Office, and live at 262, Kennington Road—from instructions I received in November, 1886, I went to 11, Gerand Street, Bow, and saw the place that had been burnt—I saw a woman there; I do not identify the prisoner; it is nearly five years ago—I made the usual inquiries as to the origin of the fire—a claim was sent in for £91 15s., the policy was for £100—the claim was settled for £75—the body of the acceptance is in my writing; it is signed Elizabeth Franklin—£75 was paid.
Cross-examined. I have had twenty-five years' experience in settling these matters—my recollection of this matter is very faint—I should see certain remains of the fire—it was a severe fire; the back room was nearly burnt out, I see by my report, and the front room nearly down—I think £100 policy is the lowest we accept—I naturally do my best for my company—I should think the policy was issued between September and November—this is the claim; I think it was signed at the same time as the acceptance—the cause of fire is stated as an explosion of a paraffin lamp; that would be made by the person before she signed it.
WILLIAM WILLIAMSON (Re-called). I have seen the signature to this claim, and compared it with handwriting of the prisoner's—to the best of my belief it is her handwriting—I never saw her write; I have compared this with various documents, among others with the signature of Kate Cranley—I have compared a lot of the writing, several claim forms, and documents of different descriptions—she has a very peculiar way of forming the letters in each of them.
Cross-examined. There are two signed Louisa Corrie—I see very great resemblance through all the documents.
JOSEPH GEORGE CLARK . I am a valuer, connected with the Lambeth County Court—I lost my sister, and had to administer to her estate—she was the owner of 156, St. George's Road, Peckham, and I, as administrator, had that house to let—on 8th July, 1889, the prisoner Wheeler and Mrs. Ingram, her daughter, called on me about the house—the prisoner described Mrs. Ingram as her daughter; I don't know that she mentioned the name of Ingram—they told me they had been over the house, and offered to take it; I did not get a reference—she wanted to take possession on the Thursday—she gave the name of Mrs. Thornton—I told her I objected to widows as tenants—she said, "Oh, you have no occasion to be afraid of your rent; I am a widow and have a pension from the employer of my late husband"—the daughter said that she and her husband were going to Yarmouth, and they wanted to see her mother in before they went—they gave me a reference to the east of London; I said I could not have it—she said, "I will pay you a month in advance"—I thought she was respectable, and I took the rent in advance; that would take her up to August—another payment was made to my daughter, and after the fire she left a fortnight's rent with the tenant of the adjoining house—I received notice of a fire on the Saturday after the 16th; I went to the premises on the Saturday, I found the prisoner there—I looked over the place—I found that the walls and ceiling were very black; the paint was scorched, the bed-covers burnt, and a portion of the bed, a round pedestal washstand very nearly destroyed, and a towel-horse destroyed; when new the furniture I saw would have been worth about
£10—I did not see it before the fire, but there had not been much fire in that room; there had been very little damage done as to burning—Iasked her if I should make out the claim for her; she said she would let me know—she told me that she had left a lamp on a chest of drawers or dressing-table and gone out, and the lamp must have exploded—there was a portion of a broken paraffin-lamp I think on the drawers; she never came to ask me to make the claim; I did not see her again till she was in custody.
Cross-examined. I said at the Police-court that I had a suspicion of this tire—I did not offer to make out a claim for what I thought was a fraudulent fire, I left that to the assessors of the office—I did not say at the Police-court that I thought it was a fraud; I said I had a suspicion about it.
WILLIAM DENNY . I live at 158, St. George's Road, Peckham—I am a stone carver—the numbers are even on one side of the road and odd on the other—my house is next to 156—about half-past nine on the evening of 18th August, 1889, afire occurred there—I got into the house the back way, and put it out—before that I had seen Mrs. Thornton with her daughter and a little boy leave the house—I was standing at the front door; they left a few minutes before I discovered the fire—Mrs. Thornton is the prisoner—the fire was burning in the back parlour, which they made a bedroom; it was a great blaze when I first went round—I put it out in a very short time—there was burning in several parts of the room—after the fire was extinguished I found there was no furniture upstairs, only downstairs, the parlour and bedroom—I had been in the house before—on one occasion Mrs. Thornton came home one evening and sent the boy to say her door was open, and she was afraid; would I go in and see if it was all right, and I did—I should say what was in the room was of the value of about £8 or £10; the amount of damage by the fire was about £5—the prisoner came back that night very late; there was no one with her.
COLIN PEACOCK . I am a clerk in the London and Lancashire Fire Office—about 18th April, 1889, the office received this letter, signed "Elizabeth Thornton"—a form was sent, and this letter came on 22nd April—after replying to that this letter came, dated 3rd May, 1889, enclosing 3s. 7d.—a policy was then forwarded for £150 on household goods and personal effects—the original policy was to cover the goods in 6, Hazlewood Road, Walthamstow—on 8th July we received this letter, upon which the policy was transferred to 156, St. George's Road, Peckham—on 17th August we got notice of a fire at 156—this claim for £94 19s. was sent to us, signed "Elizabeth Thornton"—I have a letter agreeing to accept £70.
WILLIAM RADWELL, JUN . I represent the firm of Brown, Roberts, and Radwell, of Austin Friars, assessors to the London and Lancashire—on 17th August, from instructions, I went to 156, St. George's Road. Peckham—I found that a fire had occurred in the back room, ground floor—I saw the assured, Mrs. Thornton; I cannot identify her—she made a statement to me—I saw on a chest of drawers the remains of a paraffin lamp—I supplied the form on which the claim was sent in; the person came to the office, and the agreement to accept a sum less than £100 was signed in my presence—I believe the money was paid; that would be in the hands of the office.
Cross-examined. I have had a few years' experience at valuing—I saw the remains of this fire—I should certainly not have agreed to give £75 if I had seen the furniture was worth only about £8; the remains were worth considerably more than that.
Re-examined. The articles of apparel were considerably burnt—we found remains of nearly every article claimed for.
By the COURT. There were a quantity of remains—I saw the place first on 17th August, and again on the 19th—I made a cursory examination on the 17th, and on the Monday I went into the question in detail.
JAMES CLEWLY . I am landlord of 89, Great Dover Street, and live there—on or about 1st May, 1890, the prisoner, with another woman, came and took two rooms on the second floor—she gave the name of Mrs. Cranley—the rent was six shillings a week—she took possession about the 6th May—she was visited there by her daughter—on 10th July, 1890, I saw the prisoner leave the house about twenty-five minutes to nine in the evening—I left at twenty minutes to nine—within three minutes after I heard of the fire—I ran back, and saw the flames coming out of the second floor window—the firemen came, and the fire was put out; we threw a lot of water on before they came—the fire was in the prisoner's front room—upon looking at it afterwards the fire appeared to be most in a cupboard opposite the window; the whole of the cupboard door was burnt down, which would measure something like five feet across by eight feet high—I noticed the iron part of a lamp standing on the corner of the table and the receiver broken on the ground—the prisoner came that evening about half-past eleven—I met her at the door, thinking, of' course, that she would be very much upset; I broke it to her in the quietest manner I could—it did not seem to upset her—I said, "I am very pleased to know you are insured, as the fireman has found your policy"—she said, "I should not have been insured if it had not been for a friend of mine"—she remained at my place for a little while; we made her up a bed in the parlour, and she remained that night—on the following Tuesday she gave a week's notice, and removed on the following Thursday, about nine at night—I never saw the contents of the room before the fire.
Cross-examined. I did not see anything in the least suspicious.
JAMES GEORGE WHITE . I am a clerk in the Westminster Fire Office, King Street, Covent Garden—on 24th January, 1890, this letter was received at our office, applying for an insurance of £125—a charge note was sent, a premium paid, and a policy issued on furniture at 66, Longhedge Road, Battersea, in the name of Kate Cranley—these three letters appear to be all in the same handwriting. (The letters were read; the policy vas transferred to Great Dover Street; a claim teas made for afire there of£121 15s., settled at £100, the salvage to belong to the assured, all signed "Kate Cranley. ")
REUBEN LYON . I am a silversmith of 124, Holborn—I am the owner of 46, Winchester Street, King's Cross—in January, 1887, the prisoner called on me in the name of Mrs. Hitchin, and I let her the house—she
said her grandson was coming to live with her; he came after she took possession—I recognised him at the Police-court, it was Culmer; he always paid the rent; I never saw the woman afterwards—about two months after there was a fire at the house—she told me she had a private income—I asked for references where she was then living—I wrote to that person, and I received a written answer—I gave it to Mr. Wontner.
WILLIAM HILL FIDDIMAN . I am a partner in the firm of Toplis and Harding, assessors to the Phœnix Fire Office—on 23rd March, 1887, I went to 47, Winchester Street; the fire was on the 22nd—the back room ground floor had been burnt out, it was a severe fire; the contents of the front room were damaged by smoke—I saw the remains of two lamps in the back room—I did not see the prisoner there—I saw a man who answered to the name of George Jones; I afterwards ascertained it to be Culmer—the amount of the claim was £153 19s. 3d., the amount paid was £55—the insurance was for £100.
Cross-examined. I have had experience in valuing things after fire—in the case of a severe fire it is very difficult to recognise whether things have been recently burnt; the remains of apparel would be reduced to tinder—the remains of a fire might do duty again—there was not much left from this fire that could be burnt again, beyond some few materials—we reduced the claim, because the remains of things were not to be seen that I should have expected to find there.
FREDERICK WHITEHEAD . I am a warehouseman, and live at 66, Ridley Road, Dalston—I have known the prisoner about twelve years—I have seen her on several occasions since October, 1889, down to 9th September last year—I have had conversations with her on the subject of fires—I remember the fire at 89, Great Dover Street, on 10th July—I saw her on that occasion with her daughter, Mrs. Ingram—I saw her directly after the fire, not before, on that day—I first saw them in Great Dover Street about half-past eight or a quarter to nine—Mrs. Ingram said, speaking of the fire, "It is off," meaning that it was alight; "will you go down and see if things are going on nil right?"—I watched the fire; I left them for a time, and returned and saw them later on—I saw that the place was on fire, I saw the blaze—I rejoined them at a public-house opposite Findlater's, at the corner of London Bridge—we were there some time, and then went across the bridge—after the fire the furniture at Great Dover Street was taken to 13, Whitmore Road, Hoxton.
Cross-examined. I believe I am what is termed an approver—the prisoner was present at the conversation with Mrs. Ingram; it was only a few words, so little that I easily retained it in my memory.
GUILTY.—Recommended to mercy by the JURY on account of her age. — Five Years' Penal Servitude.
224. GEORGE LOVEDAY (44), GEORGE CULMER (25), and ELLEN WHEELER (70) (indicted with Ellen Ingram, not in custody), Feloniously setting fire to a dwelling-house at Walthamstow, with intent to injure and defraud.
MESSRS. BESLEY and GILL Prosecuted, and MR. ORMSBY Defended Wheeler.
have from time to time had conversation with Culmer and Wheeler on the subject of a fires, as to the mode in which houses could be set on fire—I was in the habit of visiting 38, Ringcroft Street, which was rented by Warren Ingram; I have seen Culmer and Wheeler there, Mrs. Capsey and Loveday; I could not fix the number of times, but on several occasions—I understood from Mrs. Ingram that Loveday had an income—I have seen him there in the daytime on one or two occasion", also in the evening—in July, 1890, Mrs. Ingram in Culmer's presence spoke about Loveday having a fire—I was then living at New North Road, Hoxton; I heard it spoken of on two or three occasions; Mrs. Ingram spoke of it—the conversation generally took place at 38, Ringcroft Street; she said that it was Loveday's house that was to be fired—on 12th August I went to Ringcroft Street about mid-day—Mrs. Ingram, Wheeler, Mrs. Capsey were there, and Culmer; and later on they were joined by Mrs. Culmer; I was shown a telegram during the afternoon; Mrs. Ingram said, "I have received this from Loveday, and I shall do the job to-night; you see it is all right to start at ten; I shall manage to bring it off about that time"—it was so arranged that Loveday should leave early in the evening, and go to some place of amusement—she spoke about a fire in general, and of a key in particular; she said she had received a key, or that Loveday had sent the key of his house—she said that George Culmer was to do the business with her assistance; I had nothing to do with it, simply I was invited to go and see the show, simply as a spectator—about seven that, evening I started to go to Walthamstow with Mrs. Ingram, Mrs. Capsey, Mrs. Culmer, George Culmer, and Wheeler—we got there about half-past eight—we first went to a public-house called the Cock; we remained there, I daresay, about half an hour, and from there we went to Hoxton Road, the six of us all in company—I went as far as the gate—Culmer and Mrs. Ingram went into the house; Mrs. Ingram appeared to open the door by what I could see—they stayed there some forty minutes I should think—the other women were at the other end of the street—I was outside the house on the opposite side; I saw them come out together—Mrs. Ingram went ahead; Culmer went a few steps and then he joined me—Mrs. Ingram passed me without speaking—Culmer said, "It's all right, it will be off in about five minutes"—we walked up and down, and I should say in about five minutes the fire broke out—I saw the flames come through the front and the back on the top floor; it burnt very furiously for about a half hour, or rather more—the usual scene followed; people rushed in and tried to get things from the bottom of the house, and succeeded in saving many things—eventually the local brigade arrived and assisted to pit the fire out—I stayed there until it was nearly out, about three-quarters of an hour after the outbreak; it was then practically extinguished—the women disappeared—I did not see them again that night at Walthamstow—Culmer and I went to 13, Whitmore Road—later that night I saw Mrs. Capsey and Mrs. Culmer there—prior to the fire, on the day of the telegram, Mrs. Ingram had explained to me that there was some difficulty in getting Loveday to settle the date of the fire, and she was very glad it was finally arranged.
Cross-examined by Loveday. I cannot fix the day when I saw you at Ringcroft Street; it was somewhere about Christmas, 1889—I heard
that Mrs. Ingram had purchased a piano—I can't say how many times I saw you there; somewhere about a dozen times, say inside a dozen; suppose we say about nine or ten times—I heard nothing about the fire spoken of in your presence—I know nothing about the telegram beyond what I have stated, what I was told by Mrs. Ingram—I did not hear you mention anything about the fire.
Cross-examined by Culmer. I can swear you were at Walthamstow on purpose to set the house on fire—I did not say I would have vengeance upon you when we dissolved partnership—I did not say I would have vengeance at any cost, because I could not get your wife away from you—I did not rob my firm of £20—I am not living with my wife—I never heard that the telegram meant an appointment to go to Brighton—Inever heard of it.
Re-examined. I do not know where Mrs. Ingram is—the last time I knew she could be found was the first part of September; she was then at an address I could mention—I have not seen her since a few days after the fire in Woodstock Road—I have not the slightest idea of her whereabouts—I cannot recollect any conversation about Mrs. Ingram and Loveday going to Brighton together.
WILLIAM BOSLEY . I am a builder, and live at Walthamstow—I have known Loveday nearly five years—I let him the house 53, Hoxton Road, Walthamstow, at 9s. a week—it is a seven-roomed house, six dwelling rooms and a scullery—he was in occupation there in December, 1889, and up to the time of the fire on 12th August following—I heard of the fire the same night, about half-past ten—I saw it burning, it was a very fierce fire—I saw no one belonging to his family or himself on the premises at the time; I saw the local firemen breaking the glass panels of the door—the fire was put out—Loveday was formerly a joiner when I first knew him, till he had money left him—he was living under me all the time I knew him, not in that house, he was in that house nearly two years—it was twelve months before the fire that he was carrying on business as a joiner—I am not at all aware what he was doing at this time—I could not say for certain what family he has, five or six at least; there was a wife and some children—so far as I know there was no one in the house at the time the fire broke out
Cross-examined by Loveday. During the time of your tenancy I found you a very good tenant—I never heard of your being connected with anybody having fires, or of your ever having a fire—you lived under other landlords before me—I presume you have been living on the money left you—I always found you a good tenant, I know nothing detrimental to you—I did not think you would set fire to the place—you had some musical instruments—I have seen two pianos and a piano organ, very good instruments—you were rather a lover of music.
ABEL CLARKE . I am a member of the Salvage Corps—about eleven—on the morning of 12th August, I took charge of the house, 53, Hoxton Road—I found that a fire had apparently broken out in the front room, first floor—it was very much burnt—it had severely damaged the back room—I saw Loveday there, and asked him how he thought the fire had occurred—the only supposition was, having taken his family out and left the lamp burning, it was by the explosion of the lamp—the fire had been so fierce that I think it would be impossible to come to any decided opinion as to the cause.
Cross-examined by Loveday. When I came to your place I put a new catch upon the lock—I got the key from you—I had no suspicion regarding the outbreak—I saw nothing suspicious—I had a good look over the premises—I thought it was genuine—I found the remains of genuine things upstairs—I heard you remark, "D—the fire; I ought to be down in the country"—I wrote out a settlement for the ground floor to get the furniture out—I got the roof off to prevent further damage.
Re-examined. All the greater portion of the downstairs things were saved, and distributed round to the neighbours; for instance, the piano was saved, but damaged—everything was taken out of the house on the night of the fire; the ceiling of the front room broke down into the sitting room; the fire was principally on the first floor.
JAMES SUTTON METCALF . I am agent of the Phœnix Fire Office—I received a communication from Mr. Loveday, and on that I sent a proposal form to his address 53, Hoxton Road—it was returned filled up, as it now appears—the assurance proposed was for £300 on household goods, etc., mathematical and musical instruments—I received this letter from him without a date, with an 8s. postal order for the premium—I subsequently received this letter proposing the policy to be for £400—the policy was issued in January, 1890—on 13th August I heard of the fire at the premises, and this claim was received—it has the signature "George Loveday"—it was sent to Winstanley and Co. to settle—the claim was for £391—it purports to show damage by fire in every room of the house—I had nothing to do with the settlement of the amount.
Cross-examined by Loveday. I insured you before in 1882, as a greengrocer—I never knew you to have a fire before—the policy in 1882 lapsed a year afterwards—I think that was for £200.
GEORGE KING . I am a partner in the firm of Winstanley, Horwood, and Co., assessors to the Phoenix—I had notice of this fire at 53, Hoxton Road—I went there the day after the fire, and saw Loveday—he said that he left about 6 30 the previous evening; that his wife and eight children had gone on before; that they went to the Agricultural Hall, and returned by the last train, and found the place had been on fire; that he had left a paraffin lamp burning in his bedroom, and he supposed that it exploded—if I wanted to find out as to his being away I could easily ascertain, as it was known as Loveday's boarding-school, and he had a number of children—this was a six-roomed house with a scullery—the fire had apparently broken out upstairs in his own bedroom—there were three other rooms used as bedrooms; those three rooms were burnt out; the roof was burnt off, and the fire had gone downstairs; the lower rooms were damaged by water and by removal—I afterwards received from him this claim, amounting to £391—it appears to deal somewhat exhaustively with every room in the house—there are a large number of items in the first floor front; that was the principal bedroom; they were nearly all destroyed—we made an offer of £213, which was accepted and signed for—the salvage remained his property.
Cross-examined by Loveday. I had a good look round when I first came to your house—there were three rooms upstairs, but one was not touched—there was very little in the back room, the ante-room—£9 13s. 6d. is charged for that room—the only suspicion I had was that
I thought it was a very funny thing you should take such a number of children out—the lower part of the house was well furnished—I did not think that had been set on fire—the fire was said to have commenced in your bedroom; that was burnt out, and the roof off—there was a wardrobe that was burnt and destroyed—parts of it were found—I found a plate box; the principal items mentioned were in it—there was a good deal of contention about that on your part—there was a mahogany plate chest; I should say all the items in that were there—there were very few there—I had no evidence that it was not a genuine fire—I thought it was a suspicious thing leaving a paraffin lamp burning so many hours—I allowed £52 10s. for the damage done to the bottom part of the house.
Re-examined. I don't know the ages of the eight children; I did not see any dogs on the premises.
WALTER DINNEY (Detective Inspector). I took Loveday into custody on 2nd December last at his house in High Street, Walthamstow—I had a warrant, I read it to him; it was for conspiring with others to defraud the Phœnix and other fire offices—he said, "I never set fire to the place; what evidence have you got that I did?"—I said, "I understand you sent a telegram to Mrs. Ingram about the fire, but you will hear the evidence against you at the Court"—he said, "Yes, I did send a telegram to Mrs. Ingram "—he hesitated, and said, "But that was about another matter, it was about going to Brighton the following morning"—I then said, "You will be further charged with conspiring with others in wilfully setting fire to 53, Hoxton Road, Walthamstow, and other dwelling-houses"—he made no reply—Mrs. Loveday was present, and said to him, "George, did you do it?"—he replied, "No, I never"—on the way to the railway station he said, "I believe Richard Capsey has got me into this; one thing I do know, there has been a b----traitor in the camp. "
Cross-examined by Loveday. You did not say, "There is some b----traitorous scamp doing this for me"—I searched your house—I found nothing appertaining to a fire—there was a very reasonable amount of furniture, and pretty new, as far as I recollect—I went into all the rooms, it was the ordinary furniture; a piano and organ in the back room; the house wad furnished very well.
WILLIAM SCOTT . I am a clerk in the Accountant-General's office of the General Post Office—I produce an original telegram handed in at the St. James's Office at Walthamstow on 12th August, 1890, at 11.52 in the morning—it is addressed to Mrs. Ingram, 38, Ringcroft Road, Holloway—it is, "All right, start at ten"; there is no sender's name at the back.
The COURT held that there was no evidence against Culmer and Wheeler, who were accordingly acquitted.
Loveday, in his defence, explained that his acquaintance with the other prisoners teas quite accidental, that he knew nothing whatever about the fire, and was a considerable loser by it.
NOT GUILTY .
For cases tried in Third Court, Monday and Tuesday, see Essex and Surrey Cases.
OLD COURT .—Wednesday, February 18th, 1891.
Before Mr. Justice Charles.
225. THOMAS GEORGE TREW (47) , Feloniously setting fire to a dwelling-house at Walthamstow, Essex, on 21st October, 1890, with intent to injure and defraud. Third Count, for setting fire to goods in the dwelling-house.
MESSRS. BESLEY and GILL Prosecuted, and MR. HUTTON Defended.
WILLIAM BOSLEY . I am a builder, in High Street, Walthamstow—in August last year a Mrs. Taylor called at my office; I sent a man with her to 97, Northcote Road, Walthamstow—I gave her a form of agreement—it was returned signed as it is now—Mr. and Mrs. Taylor took possession of that house—I did not see the man till after the fire; I then saw him on the premises—the prisoner is the man.
Cross-examined. I am not quite certain whether I had references—I think I said at the Police-court that I received satisfactory references—if I made inquiries I was satisfied with the replies; we were satisfied with the appearance of Mrs. Taylor herself.
HENRY WILLIAM ANSELL . I am a member of the Salvage Corps, at the station in Upper Street, Islington—on 22nd October, 1890, I took charge of the front and back first floor rooms at 97, Northcote Road, Walthamstow, about one in the day—there were indications of a fire having occurred there—I looked round; the prisoner pointed to the parts of a broken paraffin lamp as the cause of the fire—he was on the premises when I got there—a portion of the lamp was on the floor; the other portion was on the table—I did-not make a thorough examination then—there was a lot of clothing there; some of it was scorched—the fire had commenced in the right-hand corner of the front room—the landing outside was burnt—about a fortnight afterwards Mr. Williamson called my attention to the place; it was then exactly in the same state as when the fire occurred—I did not make the examination myself, I was with the man who did; I saw what was there; I did not see anything suspicious till then—I saw a lot of clothing, some burnt and blackened, and the furniture was blackened through heat and smoke, and there were the remains of baskets, and where the baskets stood there were the remains of burnt clothing, socks, and underclothing; it smelt strongly of paraffin—I saw rags; I don't know what they were—the things were strewed all over the floor; most of them lay in the corner—I saw a washstand partly burnt through—there were no indications of fire on the floor underneath it—the rags on the landing also smelt of paraffin.
Cross-examined. I remained nearly a month in charge of the house—during that time I had every opportunity of making a search of the premises; but we don't do it without orders; we simply take charge—I go into the rooms frequently—I have never been told to make a report if I noticed anything wrong; I don't think I should, unless I knew for certain that I was right—it would be rather a difficult thing for me to make a report if I was not certain—I don't know that I should make a report of suspicions—I noticed nothing suspicious until Williamson came—there were six rooms and a washhouse or scullery—the furniture was not removed while I was there—all the rooms were furnished.
two in the afternoon, I was with Inspector Dinney in Park Street, Holloway, and saw the prisoner; I told him I was a police officer, and held a warrant for his arrest, for being concerned with several others in conspiracy and fraud for obtaining money from various fire offices—he said, "Yes, right; I had a fire at Walthamstow, in the name of Taylor; I got into it, I must get out of it"—I conveyed him to Hoxton Police-station, where he was detained till eleven at night; I was then about to convey him in a cab to Southwark Police-station—he said, "How many of the others have you got? Have you arrested the one who informed against us?"—at Southwark station he was charged; he made no reply—I searched him there, and found this book on him, containing the names of Mrs. Ingram and George Culmer, and there are some figures opposite Culmer's name, "£2 10s. 7d.," and "piano £6"—on 10th November I went to 97, Northcote Road—I examined the front bedroom, first floor, carefully; on the right-hand side going into the room I saw a heap of rags; I examined them; they were partly burnt, and smelt very much of paraffin—I have some of them here—the bedroom door was very much burnt—on the landing there was about half a bushel of rags, saturated very much with paraffin—they were about a yard and a half from the other rags, quite unconnected with each other; both had been on fire—the back bedroom door on the same landing was also very much burnt—on searching the room I found on the table this burner of a lamp, it is a new one, only used once or twice, there was no wick to it—the curtains of both rooms were very much burnt, and some dresses—the table, where the lamp was found, was not burnt at all, and there was no paraffin there or on the floor; about a yard away, on the floor, there was a lot of paraffin; that was almost connected with the heap in the front bedroom—I saw a wardrobe with two dresses in it partly burnt, they were about three yards from the heap on the other side of the room—the cupboard of the wardrobe was not scorched at all—there was a night-commode standing against the wall; that was burnt almost to a cinder, but the wall and the floor beneath it was not scorched—Mr. Dinney made a note of the other things there.
Cross-examined. It was four days after the arrest that I went there; I knew the salvage man was in—he said nothing about the rags before I went there; I pointed them out to him; he said, "I never make examination; that is your business, not mine"—he is put in to see that nothing is removed—the rags were ordinary rags, such as you could buy at a marine store dealer's, two heaps of about half a bushel each—they would be obvious to any business eye; I should think any person would notice them—there was no one in the house but Ansell; I took a note of what the prisoner said when I arrested him—he gave the correct address, 97, Northcote Road—I do not know that Taylor is the name of his step-father.
WALTER. DINNEY (Inspector). I have had the conduct of this matter—I was with Williamson when he made the examination of the house—I have heard his evidence, I corroborate it—I noticed that two of the bars of the wash-hand stand were burnt completely through, and there was no appearance of fire on the carpet on which it stood, and the paper on the wall was not burnt in the slightest degree—a plan was made of the place.
—I saw the two heaps of burnt rags saturated with paraffin—I have not marked on the plan the distances from each other, but the plan is to scale—the heaps were about three feet apart, and about four feet six inches to five feet from the night-commode on which the bottom part of the lamp was, it looked like a table—the windows were open, so as to give a draught right through—the paint on the front window was damaged so much that it could not be shut, and the glass was broken.
ALFRED WARNER DENNIS . I assist my father, who is an estate agent, in Warner Street, Barnsbury—in April, 1890, I let three rooms at 23, Lesley Street, Barnsbury, to a Mrs. Trew, for her husband—I saw the prisoner there afterwards, I knew him by the name of Robert Trew—he remained there until I gave them notice on 25th August, 1890.
ALFRED RICHARD JONES . I am assessor to the Royal Insurance Company, Lombard Street—on 5th June, 1890, I received this letter in reference to insuring furniture in 23, Lesley Street, Barnsbury—on 9th June I received this other letter, enclosing 3s. 3d. for the premium—a policy for £150 was issued; it was afterwards transferred to another address, 97, Northcote Road, Walthamstow—we afterwards received notice of a fire there—we supplied a claim form, which was returned filled up for £121 13s.—I went there and saw the prisoner—Mr. Roberts, in my presence, asked him if he had ever gone by any other name—he said, "No"—he also asked him if he had ever gone by the name of Trew—he said, "No"—he also asked him in whose writing the claim was—he said it was written by his sister-in-law; Mrs. Baldock, I think, was the name—it was signed George Taylor—it was shown him, and the items were gone through casually, not very carefully—Mr. Roberts asked him to explain the cause of the fire—I am not quite clear as to the exact words of his reply—I believe it was as to the lamp being left in the bed-room, and that it must have exploded, and that he and his wife and family were all out at the time—he was asked where he was employed; he said with Messrs. Sage, the shop-fitters, with whom he had been about eighteen or nineteen years—Mr. Roberts went into the details of the claim—I had nothing to do with that—he was taken into custody before any money was paid him.
HEPHZIBAH HOLMES . I am the wife of John Holmes, of 23, Lesley Street, Barnsbury—I remember the prisoner occupying a portion of the house—while there he was visited by Mrs. Wheeler, a very old lady, who I saw at the Police-court.
Cross-examined. I was living at the house—I only said good morning to Mrs. Wheeler; that was all the conversation I had with her.
ARTHUR JOHN WHITE . I live at Thorngate Road, Paddington—I have an interest in 68, Rhode Street, Barnsbury—in November, 1889, the prisoner called on me with reference to that house; I showed it to him, and he took it at twelve shillings a week; it was a cottage of four rooms and a scullery—he described himself as connected with the pianoforte line—he entered into possession a few days afterwards—on 5th February, 1890, I went to the premises and found there had been a fire in the first floor front room; the top of the room was completely burnt out, and the roof was off; it was a fierce fire—the kitchen was unburnt—the cupboard in the back room was burnt—I saw the furniture before the fire; only in one room—after the fire I saw the furniture that had been burnt—I was afterwards shown some furniture at Northcote Road, and I recognised
some of the articles that had been in my house; a cut glass decanter and a washstand that had been in the backroom—that was not burnt.
ROBERT DOBBIN . I am a member of the Salvage Corps—I took possession of the premises at 68, Rhode Street, Barnsbury, after the fire there on 5th February; I went there about eleven in the morning—I found that the front bedroom had been burnt out—the fire had taken place between four and five in the morning—the back room was damaged by heat and water—I remained in possession a little while—I afterward saw some of the furniture at Northcote Road, Walthamstow; a chest of drawers and a mirror; they were slightly damaged by water, not by fire—while I was at Rhode Street I saw Trew there.
ALBERT JUDD (Y 546). On the night of 4th February I was passing 68, Rhode Street, and saw the house on fire; my attention was first called by seeing the window curtains alight, and almost momentarily there was a burst of flames—I blew my whistle for assistance—two men were standing at the opposite corner—on blowing my whistle they ran towards me, one knocked at 70, that was Whitehead; the other assisted me to break the door open; I have not seen him since—I at once entered the house—on going upstairs the first floor front room was burning fiercely, it was impossible to enter the room; I went on my knees and closed the door—someone holloaed, "There are children in the house, policeman"—I went into the back room; there was not a soul in the house—by that time other constables arrived, and I sent them off to give the alarm—there was a very strong smell of paraffin as soon as I entered the passage, also on the staircase—I assisted in removing the goods in the two lower rooms—about 12.15 I was there when the prisoner came home with his wife and two children, and a person he represented as his niece—the inspector told him there had been a fire at his house, and that he wanted the particulars—he answered, "I can't help it, I did not set fire to it; me and my family have been to a theatre"—he afterwards said to me, "Where are the goods that have been removed from my house?"—I showed him the goods, they were packed up in a garden at the opposite side of the street—he said, "Who gave you authority to move my goods? I wish you had left them alone"—I saw nothing more of him; the fire was put out, and I went away.
Cross-examined. The prisoner returned about 12.15, the fire had then been put out—I believe one stand-pipe was playing on it—the fire had gone through the roof.
RICHARD JAMES HEWITT . I am clerk to the Northern Fire Insurance Company in Moorgate Street—I received this letter, and a policy was effected on furniture at 6, Northcote Road, Islington, for £100—after the policy had been delivered it was transferred on 8th March, 1889, so as to cover property in 68, Rhode Street, Barnsbury, for £200—I received notice of the fire there on 4th February, 1890—on the 6th a claim was made for £166 2s. 4d.—it was settled by agreement for £95.
EDWARD MONTAGU GREGORY . I live at Change Alley, Cornhill, and am assessor to the Northern Fire Office—I received instructions to see to the claim in respect of the fire at 68, Rhode Street, and settle it—I went to those premises, and saw a salvage officer in charge—afterwards I saw the prisoner at my office—I discussed this claim with him and asked him certain questions about it, and eventually I reduced the claim from £166 to £95—I got from him this agreement to accept £95 in full
satisfaction—Mrs. Trew said in his presence that the lamp had been left in the room to create an impression that the house was not empty, and that it must have exploded.
Cross-examined. It is not at all an unusual thing for us to pay a less sum than is claimed—every article that has been burnt is gone through and estimated.
FREDERICK WHITEHEAD . I was present in Rhode Street, Barnsbury, on the night the fire occurred there—I know Trew—Mrs. Wheeler and Mrs. Ingram went into the house; Mrs. Ingram had a key that would open the door—about five minutes after they came out the fire broke out—a policeman was passing at the time—I went towards it.
Cross-examined. The outbreak was from half-past eleven to twenty minutes to twelve—I knew they were going in—I suggest they went in for the purpose of setting the house on fire—I was watching them, not assisting them—I was simply a spectator; I only took part in it as a looker-on—I was invited to look on at the blaze—I was not to get anything out of it—I determined to give evidence in September, 1890, because I feared that "through some incendiary fire loss of life would occur I had no fear of being in danger myself—I volunteered it—perhaps I had love of justice, but it was all fear of loss of life; I will bar justice—that is as true as that I was invited to look on at the fire.
Witnesses for the Defence.
FRANCIS WILLIAM WILKINSON . I live at 17, Arkley Crescent, South Grove, Walthamstow, and am a plumber and a member and an engineer of the Walthamstow Fire Brigade—I have been a member six years—I have had experience in seeing houses that have been burnt—I went over this house in Northcote Road on the same evening that the fire took place, about twenty-five minutes past nine—I made no examination of the rooms, except as to the cause of the fire—I looked into the rooms and noticed the condition of them—I saw no rags about, or rags that had been soaked in paraffin; the only thing I noticed was a chair just inside the door on the right hand side—there was only one fire in the house, I am sure—I made an examination for that purpose.
Cross-examined. I went in about two minutes after half-past nine; the fire was burning at the time—I remained there till eleven o'clock, when I left one of my mates in charge; but I came back about half-past eleven and took charge till six in the morning, when one of my mates took charge till the salvage man came at eleven in the morning—that was all the time I spent there—after Trew was in custody Sergeant Williamson came to see me with reference to my being a member of the local fire brigade—I did not tell him it was a very suspicious fire, or anything like it—I do not know that articles burnt in preceding fires were on the premises at the time.
Re-examined. The fire broke out about twenty minutes past nine, and I went to the house about half-past nine.
By the JURY. I did not detect any smell of paraffin—I was the first in the room—Oakes, my mate, went over the premises after me.
GEORGE WILSON . I live at 9, Fonthill Road, Finsbury Park, and am manager to Mr. Brewis, of 1, Young's Park, Seven Sisters Road—I am a tailor—on 21st October, about twenty minutes to nine p.m., Trew came to my shop, and was there till about a quarter past nine—I could not say
how long it would take to get from my house in Seven Sisters Road to Walthamstow.
Two witness deposed to the prisoner's good character.
GUILTY on third count. — Five Years' Penal Servitude.
MESSRS. BESLEY and GILL Prosecuted, and MR. ROCKINGHAM GILL Defended.
FRANK STANLEY PRICE . I am an assessor to the County Fire Office—I was employed by that office to make inquiries with regard to this claim made in reference to a fire that occurred at 7 Blenheim Cottages—I went to the premises the day following the fire; I saw it had been a very severe fire; the house contained seven rooms, and it was very severely damaged—I found subsequently that three of the rooms were unfurnished; there was furniture in four of them 4—I saw the prisoner at my office at Kennington—I inquired the origin of the fire—he told me he was away from the premises; that his wife was the last person to leave, she left about two hours before the outbreak—I inquired if he could throw any light on the origin of the fire, and he replied that two lamps were left burning on the premises, one in the back parlour, which was used as a bedroom, and the other in the kitchen, and he suggested that one of those lamps was the cause—this claim which I had before me was for £167 9s. in respect of that fire, for furniture, wearing apparel, and household effects—there are a great number of items—I agreed the amount of loss with him at £133 12s.—the head office afterwards, on my advice, negotiated the surrender of the policy with him—I went to the premises a second time when the statement of loss had reached me—I saw the remains of a lamp there.
Cross-examined. I hardly came to the conclusion, after inspecting the salvage, that the loss occasioned by the fire was £133 12s.; the fire was of so severe a character that I had to take much of it for granted; one makes every possible inquiry—the payment of the money was withheld for some days, because I was informed he had had another fire in Plevna Road—afterwards the money was paid as the best means to settle the thing—that is the usual case—I made the best settlement I could; I was not authorised to refuse entirely—I report all circumstances that come to my knowledge to the office; I reported all in this case, and yet the office paid; I told them I could give no tangible evidence—I have had twenty years' experience in examining and making assessments—I sometimes see a summary of Captain Shaw's returns in the newspapers—there are between 2,000 and 3,000 fires a year in London—I do not know if between 300 and 400 of those are caused by the explosion of paraffin lamps—when I went into the premises the day after the fire it was dark, and I could not see very well—after I received a statement of the loss I made a minute examination—I did not examine the remains of the lamp—the statement about the explosion may be perfectly true—all a company contract to do under a policy is to indemnify the assured for the loss sustained, and therefore if a chair worth £3 is burnt to the extent of 25s. we pay 25s.—sometimes the chair would be replaced; buildings are frequently reinstated; but it is very unfrequently done with regard to furniture and wearing apparel—I saw whatever remained—I saw the
prisoner sign the claim—I think he asked me how the statement was to be made out, and I told him the method—he claimed £20 for the pianoforte; I allowed £10.
Re-examined. The office would not send anyone to see Capsey's things before the policy for £150 was issued, it would not be worth while, unless circumstances roused suspicion—in a great measure there is no means of testing a claim after a fierce fire; any metal things would be left—I did not hear from the prisoner that he had had another fire, but I found on inquiry it was his brother's, not his—I have no recollection of his telling me his occupation.
JAMES WALLIS . I am in the employment of the County Fire Office, Regent Street—on 9th April, 1889, I received this letter from R. Capsey, 6, Hazelwood Road, Blackhorse Lane—a reply was sent, and then on 12th April I received this proposal for insurance from R. Capsey, and this premium of 3s.; and this policy for £150 on general household furniture at 6, Hazelwood Road, was issued—on 20th August, 1889, the policy was transferred to 7, Blenheim Cottages, Church Crescent, Hackney—on 12th October, 1889, we received information that a fire had taken place—afterwards we received a claim in respect of the fire from our assessor—Mr. Price acted for the company in dealing with the claim, and in accordance with the agreement arrived at by him the claim was settled for £133 12s.—the receipt is endorsed on the policy.
Cross-examined. We insure furniture and household goods for less than £100—there is no limit to the amount insured, I think.
ROBERT HENRY PETER . I am clerk to Mr. Sparks, who has an estate office at South Hackney—on 8th. August, 1889, Capsey called with reference to taking 7, Church Crescent—he agreed to take it at £2 15s. a month, on a monthly tenancy—we accepted him as a tenant, and he took possession on 19th August—he remained in it till a few days after 11th October—it was a seven-roomed house—four rooms were furnished—on 11th October we heard of the fire—I called early on the 12th—I asked the prisoner if he could account for the fire at all, and he told me that the only way he could account for it was that the cat had jumped on to the table and upset a lamp—he said he was at the time at the house of Mrs. Hughes, who was one of his references—I know her; I don't know if she is here—Mr. Treer was the other reference—I formed an opinion of the value of the contents of the house before the fire; I should have thought the value would not have been more than £50—I have some experience in valuing; I am clerk to Mr. George Sparks, a surveyor, and I have a great deal of experience in taking possession of furniture, and so forth.
Cross-examined. I have never made a valuation—I have sometimes seen the cost of furniture that we have to levy on, and I know what furniture costs—furniture might be sold the day after it was bought for next to nothing—I only made a cursory examination of the furniture as I visited the premises—I have been there more than twice—the rent of the house was about £23 a year—that was a lower rent than the house had been let for before—it was a house a respectable man would live in; he would have to have some means to keep it up; I understood he was going to let part of it; I cannot say it was let during the time he occupied it—I inquired personally of the references he gave—he gave his business as that of a plasterer.
JOHN EDWARD FLACK . I am a member of the Salvage Corps—I went into possession of 7, Church Crescent, where this fire took place, on the morning after the fire—it was a seven-roomed house, four rooms were furnished—three rooms on the ground floor, and one on the first floor were damaged by the fire, which appeared to have burnt very fiercely indeed—I saw the prisoner there—my attention was drawn to the bottom part, the stand, of a lamp on the mantelshelf—two or three chairs and a table left in the kitchen were saved, everything else was burnt—Capsey said nothing to me as to where he was at the time of the fire, nor anything as to the cause, except that he could account for it only by the lamp having upset.
Cross-examined. It was part of my duty to make an examination—the two rooms on the ground floor were severely damaged, the kitchen not so much—I could not find any trace as to where the fire originated—the bottom part of the lamp was in the back parlour ground floor; that room was practically burnt out.
HARRIETT HUGHES . I am a marine store dealer and a dealer in secondhand clothes—I have known the prisoner from childhood, I am no relation of his—I have seen Mrs. Wheeler and Mrs. Ingram—I remember the fire occurring at Blenheim Cottages.
Cross-examined. Mr. and Mrs. Capsey have dealt with mo for clothes for their children—I know nothing against the prisoner.
Re-examined. I knew nothing of the other fire; he never told me about it.
ARTHUR TREER . I am a greengrocer, at Well Street, Hackney—I have known the prisoner some time—I was one of his references—I moved him from Hazelwood Road to Blenheim Cottages, and then back to Hazelwood Road again, and then to Well Street, and afterwards to Westerfield Street—I did not move him to Nassau Road.
Cross-examined. I have known him from a baby—he has been as hardworking a man as I have known—I have known nothing against his character.
Re-examined. I know nothing about the other fires—I have moved Mrs. Ingram.
WILLIAM WILLIAMSON . At half-past eight on 25th November I was in company with Inspector Dinney, when we arrested the prisoner at 25, Westerfield Road, Tottenham, for conspiring to defraud insurance offices—when I had read the warrant (in which certain names were mentioned) to him he said, "Yes, I have had two fires; they were all right. I know Mrs. and Mr. Ingram, also Mrs. Wheeler: they used to visit me at 6, Hazelwood Road; they did not live with me there, but they lived with me for some time at Nassau Road"—I said, "You will be further charged with wilfully and maliciously setting fire to 7, Church Crescent, Hackney, and other dwelling-houses"—ho made no reply—he was taken to Southwark Police-station and charged; he made no reply—I mentioned the names of Mr. and Mrs. Ingram to him, but I can only find the name of Culmer in this warrant.
Cross-examined. The last fire in the indictment was in October, 1889—I arrested him outside the house—I am positive ho said, "They were all right," after saying, "I have had two fires"—I did not put any question to him before he said that.
the prisoner's arrest—I found this insurance policy there. (This was a policy for £200 on the furniture at Well Street, afterwards transferred to 25, Westerfield Road.)
ROBERT ALFRED ENRIGHT . I am an auctioneer, at 32, Albion Road, Stoke Newington—No. 4, Nassau Road, Stamford Hill, is my property—in July, 1886, I let that house to the prisoner; it had six rooms and a cellar—the rent was eleven shillings a week—the fire occurred there in the following September—I went into the house several times before the fire occurred, and saw the furniture—he only had three rooms furnished—the value of the furniture was about £30—he let the. other three rooms—a day or two after the fire I went to the premises and saw the prisoner—he said he could only account for the fire by the paraffin lamp exploding—he said he and his family had been to the City at the time it happened—he remained at my place for about twelve months after the fire—I was in the house from time to time—then he left.
Cross-examined. While he was there I gave him eight or nine odd jobs to do for me—I was not always satisfied with him—the rent was supposed to be a counter-claim for what he did, but he left owing me £15—I was very dissatisfied with the way he did his work on the last occasion—I saw furniture worth £30, that did not include wearing apparel.
Re-examined. I received £35 from the insurance company on behalf of damage to my house, and I gave the job to the prisoner, and I was very dissatisfied over it—he did not pay his rent.
ALFRED CHRISTY . I live at 2, Nassau Road, Stamford Hill, next door to the prisoner—at ten o'clock on the night of 11th September my attention was attracted by a blaze of light at the back window of No. 4—I got over the wall by a ladder, and got in by the back window of No. 4—I found nobody was in the house—the fire was in the back room, which was used as a bedroom—I got my wife to bring me pails of water, and I did what I could to put the fire out—the fire seemed to have travelled from the corner of the fireplace along the bed-clothes, from foot to head, and possibly something might have been hanging on the back of the door, the blaze was running up the door—the bed-clothes were hanging down part of the burning frame—I do not think the place was much burnt—on the mantelpiece was a lamp, with a broken chimney standing up beside it—I saw the prisoner and his wife at past twelve at night; I hardly passed a word with them, they seemed very sad and sorry about it; they went into the next house, I believe—I left the house in charge of the fire brigade—the prisoner never spoke to me about it, or about what I had done in putting it out.
Cross-examined. I saw quite a rush of fire coming out at the back window; it did not last above two minutes, and I got in at that window—the fire burst the window—I could not tell if there was any appearance of the lamp having exploded; everything seemed in order—I did not look if the lamp had a wick.
JAMES GEORGE WHITE . I am a clerk in the Westminster Fire Office, King Street, Covent Garden—on 24th July we received this letter from Richard Capsey—we replied, and received this letter of 6th August, enclosing three shillings for the premium—a policy for £150 was issued in August, 1886—on 12th September we had notice of a fire—the matter was placed in the hands of our assessor—we received this claim for £126 4s., which was settled by payment of £105—this is the acceptance
of that amount—the policy was not renewed; it was for a year; it was not surrendered.
Cross-examined. We issue policies below £100; there is no limit.
ALEXANDER ROBERTS . I am an auctioneer, of Conduit Street—I am assessor to the Westminster Fire Office—in September, 1886, I went to 4, Nassau Street, Stamford Hill—I found a fire had occurred there—a claim for £126 4s. in respect of the fire was submitted to me—it was a very severe fire, to the best of my recollection; in one room on the ground floor, I think—I do not remember it very distinctly; it was four or five years ago—we get the best evidence we can to test a claim; there was not very much debris to be seen; there was a quantity of the remains of wearing apparel—we have to rely very much on statements made by the assured person—I saw either Mr. or Mrs. Capsey at my office, and questioned them about the matter; in the result the matter was settled for £105—the fire was supposed to have been caused by the explosion of a paraffin lamp—I cannot say who told me that. (The claim signed by Capsey stated that the supposed cause of fire was the explosion of a paraffin lamp)—the salvage belonged to the prisoner.
Cross-examined. I have had a great deal of experience as assessor—I went to the premises about three days after the fire, and made a minute examination of what I found—I found traces of a quantity of wearing apparel—I considered the claim for £126 was not unreasonable—I know a great number of fires are caused by paraffin lamps; I don't know that between 400 and 500 are so caused every year in London.
Re-examined. I have no means of knowing how many are accidental and how many intentional.
NOT GUILTY .
There was another indictment against the prisoner for a like offence, upon which no evidence was offered.
NOT GUILTY .
Thursday, February 19th, 1891.
Before Mr. Justice Charles.
MESSRS. BESLEY and C. F. GILL Prosecuted, and MR. MEEKS Defended.
WILLIAM BAKER . I live at Ravenscourt Priory, New Walthamstow, and am landlord of 34, Arkley Road—the prisoner took that house on 29th April, 1889, at 7s. 6d. a week; there were six rooms and a scullery—he remained there till July, 1889—in June a fire occurred—I went into the house once between April and June—I should not think the value of the furniture was more than £30—I only saw two rooms furnished—I did not go into all the rooms; I saw the front room downstairs and the front bedroom upstairs—I never saw the prisoner—I saw an old lady, whom I understood was Mrs. Wheeler, and a woman supposed to be Mrs. Ingram there—the prisoner did not take the house from me; it was taken in the name of Charles Ingram—the tenant in the next house had the letting of it—I never saw any man there.
there to get particulars, and I relieved him—no one else was there—late in the afternoon Mrs. Wheeler and her daughter, Mrs. Ingram, came to the house—on the Sunday, two or three days after, I saw the prisoner, I believe he came home to dinner—I was there, and Mrs. Wheeler and Mrs. Ingram were occupying the place, they had prepared dinner for his coming home—I noticed that the front room on the first floor was severely damaged by fire—the other rooms were only affected by smoke and heat—there were the remains of a lamp, the lamp and broken glass on the floor, and, I think, the foot on a table between the two windows—I had no conversation with him or with Mrs. Wheeler or Mrs. Ingram in his presence about the fire—the room in general was severely damaged, and I saw the remains of wearing apparel on the floor and hanging on the bedstead and in a cupboard—I went into the other rooms and passages—I saw no traces of fire except in the front room—there was furniture in the back room and on the ground floor, the parlour and kitchen were furnished, and there were odds and ends in the scullery—I should say the value of the contents of the room where the fire was, the bedstead, table, chairs, bedding, and so forth, was £7, £8, or £9, leaving out the wearing apparel that had all been burnt—I could not form an estimate of the furniture on the premises.
Cross-examined. It had been a tolerably fierce fire, all the contents of the house were more or less damaged by smoke and heat, and the underneath part by water—I do not know what day of the week it took place—I saw no man in the house for three or four days after.
JAMES GEORGE WHITE . I am a clerk in the Westminister Fire Office, King Street, Covent Garden—on 9th October, 1886, I received this letter, produced, signed Warren Ingram—in answer a charge-note was sent, and a policy issued for £150 on household furniture at the address, 138, Caledonian Road—the premium was 3s.—in October, 1887, that policy was transferred to 8, Chesham Road, Fulham; and in April, 1889, to 34, Arkley Road—on 14th June, 1889, we received notice from a salvage man of a fire having taken place, at 34, Arkley Road, that day—afterwards we received this claim, signed Warren Ingram, for £97 1s. 6d. in respect of that fire—there are a considerable number of items; a considerable number of items of clothing—he handed the claim to the assessor, Mr. Roberts, and it was settled for £78—I sent this cheque for £78 to Warren Ingram—to the best of my recollection he brought it back to our office, and said it was crossed "not negotiable," and to enable him to negotiate it I had the words added, "Pay cash," and the secretary's signature; and he took it away—it has come back as having been cashed.
Cross-examined. I presume the claim is for all the furniture in the house, but I have not visited the premises—I should say the salvage was taken by the assured in this case—a claim is often in excess of the amount for which it is settled, a difference of 25 per cent, is not unusual—a man claims for what he considers is the full amount of the damage to the furniture, not for the full value of the furniture—our assessors agree as to the damage—the policy had been in existence three years before a claim was made—I know of no suspicious Matures in the case—I don't think there was anything that would have prevented us renewing the policy if it had been asked for—the alteration in the cheque was to enable him to negotiate it; he had no banker.
Roberts—we act as assessors to the Westminster Fire Office—in this case, representing them, I went to 34, Arkley Road on the day after the fire—I saw there Mrs. Wheeler and, I believe, Mrs. Ingram—I found the front room on the first floor burnt out, and the rest of the house more or less damaged by smoke and water—there was no fire in any other room—I saw a broken paraffin lamp; I don't know that my attention was called to it particularly—three or four days afterwards the prisoner came to my office—he was asked the cause of the fire—he said he supposed it was caused by this paraffin lamp having exploded—I discussed the amount of damage done with him; there are one hundred items, principally wearing apparel—when there has been a fierce fire it is not easy to ascertain the value of the articles destroyed, especially when they are wearing apparel; we are obliged to rely on the statements of the assured; we endeavour to trace the remains as far as we can—I settled the amount for £78—I filled up this agreement to accept, dated Jnne 19th; it was brought to the office by Mrs. Ingram, I think—it is signed for Warren Ingram by Lucy Ingram—it states that he was to keep the salvage.
Cross-examined. I saw the prisoner a few days after the fire—I went over the house carefully—I saw nothing that led me to report there were any suspicions—I knew nothing of the man before.
WALTER DINNEY (Inspector). About 8 o'clock p.m., on 21st November, I arrested the prisoner on a warrant in the Caledonian Road—I read the warrant to him; it was for conspiracy and defrauding insurance companies—he said, "I know nothing about it"—I took him to Whitehall Place—I said, "You will be further charged with being concerned with George Culmer and others, in wilfully and maliciously setting fire to a dwelling-house at 34, Arkley Road, Walthamstow, and other dwelling-houses"—he said, "I have lived at 34, Arkley Road, but I am innocent of any conspiracy"—I showed him the proposal form and the claim in respect of the house in Arkley Road—he said, "Yes, that is my hand writing. I wrote out the claim; I did not write the proposal, and I know nothing about it"—there was other conversation, not relating to this matter—he gave the address 31, St. James' Road.
Cross-examined. That address is correct—the prisoner is an omnibus driver, in the employment of the London Road-Car Company—I know he comes off duty late at night, I believe about midnight; I do not know his hours—I should think it was too late for him to live at a place like Walthamstow—the result of my inquiries is that he had been living with his wife—I found this letter on him, addressed to Mrs. E. Ingram, District Post Office, Essex Road, London, England—it professes to have been posted in Melbourne—he said, "I got it from my wife," she has warrants out against her for being concerned in several of these fires; Mrs. Wheeler, her mother, was convicted a few days ago.
AMELIA WELLS . I am the wife of Robert Charles Wells, of 31, St. James' Road, Barnsbury—in August, 1890, a room was taken for the prisoner at my house—I saw his wife there two or three times—I have not seen her lately.
Cross-examined. She took the room for him; he lived there—he came home as a rule about twelve or a little later, and left at a few minutes to eight in the morning—ho was an omnibus driver—I have known him about two years; they lived with me before.
Sisters' Road-in February, 1886, I let 18, Charles Street, Tottenham, to the prisoner—on 4th of April following, on Sunday night, I heard of a fire there—I went to the house and found nobody was in it—I burst the door, and got in and found the house was smouldering—some days afterwards I saw the prisoner—he said nothing as to how the fire had occurred or where he was at the time—he remained there a week or a fortnight after the fire, to the best of my recollection—I had moved away whatever goods he had.
Cross-examined. I never had any complaint about the water supply of that house—I am the person to whom complaints would be made—I do not recollect being asked to have a new tap put on; I should remember it if anything had been said about a tap—the cistern supplying the house was outside, the pipe came through the wall—the cistern was covered up; the cisterns had new tops on about a year before—I last saw the cistern about two years ago, I suppose—the house was in thorough order, the cistern and everything connected with it, when the prisoner went in—I swear the top of the cistern was on in 1886.
Re-examined. The water supply was all right when we went in in February; he made no complaint of being without water or being unable to draw it.
WALLACE THOMAS ROSE . I am a son of the last witness—on Sunday night, 4th April, when this fire occurred I went with my father to this house—the door was closed, no one was in the house, and we burst it open—I went in on my hands and knees—I noticed the fire in the front room, the carpet there was burnt in three or four patches, distinct from each other—the legs of the sofa were burnt—I believe there were folding doors between the front and back rooms—the bed-clothes in the bedroom were smouldering at the bottom—I don't know how the fire had got from the front to the back room—there was a broken paraffin lamp on the table in the front room, some of the broken parts were on the floor—there was no blaze when we went in, but some things began to blaze behind the door that led from the passage into the front room—I went to get some water, and I found I could not get any from the tap—I suppose the pipe was stopped up; I did not look—the tap turned, but no water came—I got water from next door.
Cross-examined. I had no difficulty in getting water from next door—when we went in the place was closed so tightly that no draught could get in; as soon as the door was open and the draught gat in the place burst into flames—one of the neighbours told me of the fire—I live about seventy yards off—I have seen the prisoner at the house; I had not seen him there that day nor the day before; I am away in the daytime—I had not seen him there at any time in the night—I mentioned what I have told to-day at the Southwark Police-court last month, three or four years intervened before I mentioned it.
JAMES WALLIS . I am a clerk in the County Fire Office, Regent Street—this insurance policy for £100, in the name of Ellen Ingram, was issued by them in respect of furniture at 12, Albert Road, Stamford Hill, and it was transferred to 18, Charles Street, Tottenham, on 10th March, 1886—on 6th April, 1886, we received this notice of a fire, in the name of Mrs. E. Ingram; afterwards we received this claim for £84 14s. 6d. from Ellen Ingram—that was settled by payment of £67, one of the conditions being
that the policy should be given up, and it was surrendered—that is signed by William Ingram—the date of the endorsement is 21st April, 1886.
Cross-examined. I do not profess to be an expert in handwriting.
The prisoner received a good character from an inspector of the Road-Car Company.
GUILTY on Third Count. — Twelve Months' Hard Labour.
The COURT commended the conduct of the officers concerned in these cases.
Before Mr. Recorder.
MR. WILLIS Prosecuted, and MR. PURCELL Defended Smith.
JOHN LLOYD (Detective Sergeant K). On the night of January 23rd I was on duty at West Ham—a meeting was being held at the Town Hall, and I saw the prisoners together, loitering and pushing their way in and out of the crowd; they put their arms round several persons, and tried their breast pockets and trousers pockets—Smith struck an old gentleman and knocked his hat on one side, and Hunt put his arm round him—they pushed into the crowd, and went along the passage leading to the back of the hall—I went round to the side entrance and saw them pushing their way out again, meeting people coming in—I followed them round to the front, where they pushed their way in again and got into the hall—I went in and saw them coming down hurriedly from the gallery, Hunt was placing something in his trousers pocket; I seized him and said, "I am a police officer, and have been watching your movements, and shall take you in custody as suspected persons"—I took them to the station; Hunt was wearing a tin box lid, with a brass chain as a watch in his waistcoat pocket—I was about to search his breast pocket when he pulled out this purse and said, "This is only an old empty purse"—in his trousers pocket I found a half-sovereign, one shilling and sixpence in silver, twopence, and an almanac.
Cross-examined by Hunt. Both doors did not open, only one; there was a great crush—I saw Smith strike a man, and saw you attempting to pick pockets—a lot of uniform men were there; I could not get to the gentlemen to speak to them.
Cross-examined by MR. PURCELL. This was between seven and eight p.m.—one door was by ticket and the other a public entrance—there was a good deal of confusion, pushing backwards and forwards—I was a little distance from Smith while I was watching him, and persons crowded between me and him—Smith gave a correct address; I know nothing against him.
HUGH BRADFORD (K 357). On the night of January 23rd I was on duty outside West Ham Town Hall—Lloyd spoke to me, and I watched the prisoners pushing their way in among the crowd—they went in; I could not get in owing to the crush, but went to the side entrance, and saw
them coming down the staircase—Lloyd spoke to them, and handed Smith into my custody—I took him to the station, and he was charged with stealing—he made no reply in my hearing—I found on him 1s. 6d. and an opera glass.
Cross-examined by MR. PURCELL. This was about 6.45—if they went to the door without tickets the police might say, "Go round to the other door"—Smith did not say, "You have made a mistake" in my presence.
WILLIAM HALL . I am a retired schoolmaster, of 6, Elm Road, Stratford—on 23rd January I came to Stratford Town Hall to hear an address by Sir Charles Russell, and shortly after joining the crowd, people gathered round me, and as I got to the first step the crowd pressed me a good deal, and I found Hunt holding me close; I turned round and saw his face, and said, "What are you holding me in that way for?"—he said, "Oh, I want you"—I wrested myself free, and got into the crowd—I felt in my pocket, and missed my purse containing about £10—I told a policeman, who told me go to the station; I did so, and saw the two prisoners there, and I recognised Hunt—I have no doubt about him.
Cross-examined by Hunt. There was a man between you and me—I was pulled back.
WILLIAM AYLIFF (Police Inspector). On the night of January 23rd the prisoners were brought to West Ham station for loitering, supposed to be for the purpose of picking pockets—I asked them to show what they had about them; Smith produced a purse from his breast pocket with 1s. 6d. in it.
Hunt's Defence. All the gentlemen must have had overcoats on; there is no proof that I stole the purse; if I did I must have had the money found on me.
NOT GUILTY .
MR. WILLIS offered no evidence.
NOT GUILTY .
Before Mr. Common Serjeant.
MR. THOMPSON Prosecuted.
RICHARD BAKER . I live at 113, Leytonstone Road, Stratford—about half-past seven on 23rd January I got to the Town Hall, Stratford, to attend a political meeting—a number of people were outside, I had great difficulty in getting in; I was hustled and pushed about a great deal—I had in my right-hand trousers pocket a purse containing two £5 notes, a half-sovereign, one shilling of the new issue, and I believe two sixpences—I lost my purse that night—this is it, I did not have it in my hand at the Police-court—I have had it about eight years—about two years ago I altered it, as it used to open in my pocket, and now one of the frames stands above the other—I no doubt lost it getting into the hall, but I did not miss it till next morning—I was up all night with a sick grandchild, and the first intimation I had of the loss was finding my pocket broken down—I went to the Police-station about it next day; I saw my purse there some time afterwards.
Cross-examined. I cannot say I saw you on this night; the man behind me was rather shorter than you—when I went to the Police-station next
day the inspector told mo that two men had boon taken to the station for attempting to pick pockets—he did not show mo my purse—I will swear I lost it on the 23rd.
JOHN LLOYD (Detective Sergeant K). On 23rd January, about half-past seven, I was outside the Town Hall, watching a crowd going into a meeting—I watched the prisoner, and saw him putting his hands round persons' trousers and waistcoat pockets from behind—he entered the Town Hall, and went right through the passage, and came out of the side door where people get in by ticket, pushing himself in a very suspicious manner among people who were trying to enter—the meeting was upstairs; he did not go upstairs—he came out of the side door and round to the main entrance again, and I saw a man not present strike an old gentleman on the hat, and I saw the prisoner immediately put his hand round and snatch his hand away—then he forced himself into the building again—I got on to a fence, and saw him making his way up the stairs—I went in at the side entrance, and saw him and the other man rushing down the stairs into the side lobby again; they were only up there a few minutes—I saw him when at the bottom, of the stain put his hand into his right-hand pocket as if putting something in—he was making for the back way again when I and Bradford caught hold of him and the other man—we were in plain clothes—I said, "I am a police officer, and I don't like your movements here"; and I said I should take them to the station as suspected persons; the prisoner made no reply—at the station I found he was wearing this chain with a box lid at the end—in his trousers pockets I found 10s. gold, 1s. 6d. silver, and 2d.—I was about to search his breast pocket when he snatched this purse out and said, "There is nothing in that; it is an empty purse"—I laid it down on the inspector's desk, and it was opened by the inspector—he made no reply to the charge—I also found on him this book, which he termed his diary—it is an almanac, from the Blind Beggar public-house, Whitechapel Road—I was not there when Baker came to the station—I was there when he identified the purse after the prisoner was committed for trial—I have had it in my possession ever since—the name of the other man who was with him all through this is Smith.
Cross-examined. I was not far from you, about two yards behind you when you were shoving about outside the crowd, attempting to pick pockets—the gentleman was in front of you—the doors opened about a quarter or ten minutes to eight—I believe you went in at the left-hand door—you went upstairs on the balcony, you did not enter the hall; I arrested you as you came down to go out again—the only charge I made against you was that of being suspected persons—we did not know of this purse having been stolen then—there were other people besides you, I could not take them all into custody—when you were committed for trial you asked for this property to be given up to you, and I said, "I have no doubt, your honour, I shall find an owner for this purse"—the prosecutor knew on Friday or Friday week that it was in our hands, through its being in the newspaper in the ordinary way, I suppose; I did not put it in the paper.
Re-examined. Baker came to the station about a fortnight after the prisoners wore arrested; they wore committed for trial then for stealing from William nail—the prisoner was tried here with Smith at these
Sessions and acquitted—Hall came to the station the night the prisoner was arrested.
HUGH BRADFORD (K 357). Before eight o'clock on this night I was on duty in plain clothes outside the Town Hall—Lloyd called my attention to the prisoner, whom I watched—I saw him shove himself among a number of persons going into the Town Hall, and get into the body of the Town Hall, and then he went round to the side entrance and came round with another man, Smith, whom Lloyd told me to take into custody—we took them to the station, and they were charged with being suspected persons and loitering for the purpose of committing felony—on the remand they were charged with attempting to pick pockets; they were charged here with stealing money from Hall—that money was not found on them.
WILLIAM AYLIFFE (Inspector K). On 23rd January I was at the station when the prisoner and another man were brought in; I took the charge—this purse was either taken from the prisoner by Lloyd or the prisoner produced it himself in my presence—the prisoner said, "It is mine'—I asked him if it was his own, and he said yes—he said, "I have taken the money out," and he produced from his right-hand trousers pocket 10s. gold, 1s. 6d. silver, 2d. bronze—I opened the purse and said, "I suppose you have taken all the money out?"—he said, "Yes"—I said, "Do you know there is a new shilling and a new sixpence in it?"—I was not at the station the first time when Mr. Baker came.
Cross-examined. I took the charge about 8 30—you were brought in about eight—I did not say when I opened the purse, "There's 1s. 6d. in it," nor did you say, "I did not know it. "
The prisoner, in his defence, said that none of the three charges had been proved; that he had no money to pay for his defence, and that he got his living in the Market.
NOT GUILTY .
No evidence was offered.
NOT GUILTY .
ROBERT SIMPSON . I am manager of the Wave lodging-house, 235, Victoria Dock Road, belonging to Miss Phillips—on Saturday, 18th January, the prisoner came there about eleven p.m., registered his name as Cook, and went up to bed—the other lodgers reported that he was creating a disturbance—I paid him his money, and had him ejected—he left in charge of the night porter—on my arrival in the morning I found two plate-glass windows broken, value £7, on the ground floor.
WILLIAM PALMER . I am porter at the Wave lodging-house—on 17th January, about eleven p.m., the prisoner came there, and I showed him to a bed—shortly afterwards complaints were made that he was making a noise—I went up and requested him to be quiet and allow others to sleep; he said nothing, but made more noise, and would not desist, and laughed—he was ejected and his money returned—about 2.18 a.m. he came back and asked for the return of his money, sixpence—I told him he had already received it, and shut the door—then heard glass smashing, ran out, and saw him throwing another
stone, and he had these two large stones (produced) in his hand—I shouted to him, and detained him—he was drunk, and was drunk when he first came, but not so bad—these stones are the same as the road is made of—he said he would break the lot of windows if he had the chance, but said it in a jocular way—I gave him in charge.
Cross-examined by the Prisoner. The row upstairs was because you said you had been robbed—a half-crown and halfpenny were found under your pillow, and returned to you.
GEORGE HEWLETT (K R 31). I am quartered at Canning Town—on January 18th, about 3.15, I was called to the Wave lodging-house, and saw the prisoner there—I said, "I shall take you in custody for wilfully breaking two plate-glass windows, value about £6"—he said, "All right; I will go with you"—I took him to the station, he was charged, and said, "I know nothing about it"—he had been drinking heavily; he could not walk straight.
The prisoner, in his defence, stated that he was robbed in the house, and was turned out for making a noise about it, and they refused to return the money he had paid for his bed, and he threw stones at the door, not intending to break the windows.
GUILTY .— Three Months' Hard Labour.
Before Mr. Recorder.
MR. LEONARD Prosecuted, and MR. WARBURTON Defended.
Cross-examined. Morgan Kelly was the prosecutor, I have his written retainer—I decline to say whether the prosecution was started by a company of shipowners.
MORGAN KELLY . I am a labourer—I was in the employment of the Shipping Federation Company, and was boarded and lodged by them on board the ship Scotland in the Albert Docks—on January 5th I went ashore about nine p.m., and was returning about half-past eleven with Barrett, Coleman, Mahoney, Foster, and Payne—I saw the prisoner twenty or thirty yards from the dock gate, Connaught Road—he said, "Where are you going?"—I said, "Into the docks"—he said, "What ship are you going to?"—I said, "The Scotland"—he made a move as if to walk away, and said, "I will give you Scotland, you bastard!" and struck me with a stick on my mouth twice—I was knocked down, and several more attacked me—I was struck and kicked while on the ground—the police came up, and I gave the prisoner in charge—I did not notice what became of his stick—I saw a doctor at the Police-station.
Cross-examined. I did not go to the hospital—I am not finding the expenses of this prosecution—I was at Mr. Willis' office, but I never asked him to prosecute, nor did he ask me—I did not sign a retainer—I did not know that there was a grudge against the prisoner because he was concerned in a picket—it is not a well-lighted spot, but there is a lamp there—there were six men with me, but one went away somewhere; there were not more than six—I used my belt in the scrimmage—I was a soldier for six years, and do not mind defending myself when I am
attacked—it was not a regular scrimmage, because it was thirty to five; the prisoner was a perfect stranger to me—I do not know whether he got injured by my belt—I had been for a stroll in Woolwich, and went into two or three public-houses with the same men who were with me when I was attacked—I was not flush of cash—the last public-house was shut up at 9.30, and we had to go—we went towards the Scotland at ten o'clock; that was three-quarters of an hour's walk—we went into one public-house on the road—I was not rather the worse for drink—I had been into a great many public-houses and the canteen too—I was not a little shaky on my legs—I will not undertake to say I was strictly sober—I think I can swear to the prisoner; I am very nearly sure—Barrett and I were having a few words, and we came to blows—there was no quarrel with any of the others.
Re-examined. I pointed out the man who struck me to the police at the time—I am no longer in the employ of the Shipping Federation; I am dismissed, and am taking proceedings against them.
MARTIN MAHONEY . I am a labourer, employed by the Shipping Federation on the Scotland—I was with Kelly on 5th January—as we returned at 11.30 the prisoner and three or four more came over to us and asked where we were going—Kelly said we were going into the dock—the prisoner said, "What boat are you going on?"—he said, "The Scotland," and the prisoner struck him in his mouth with a stick, saying, "I will give you Scotland, you bastard!"—Kelly tried to defend himself, and the prisoner struck him again on the hand with a stick, and the police came and took him in custody.
Cross-examined. I did not talk over with him the evidence I was to give, before I went to the Police-court—I had a walk round Woolwich that evening, but did not go into any public-house—I was with Kelly the whole time—we went into one public-house—there was no quarrelling in my company.
Re-examined. I was sober.
THOMAS BARRETT . I am employed on the Scotland—I was returning home on 5th January, and when near the Connaught Dock gate the prisoner came up with two or three others, and asked Kelly where he was going; he said to the docks—he asked, "What ship?"—Kelly said, "Scotland"—the prisoner said, "I will give you Scotland," and struck him with a stick on his head, and knocked him down, and a lot of men got round him and started kicking him, and the police came up.
Cross-examined. I saw no one Use a belt—I had never seen the prisoner before—five of us were with Kelly—we had been into one public-house; we did not stop long—we did not go to the canteen at all—there was no Quarrelling in my company, and no blow struck—Kelly and I were not quarrelling.
CHARLES FAWKS (K 571). On January 5 I was on duty in Connaught Road, Plaistow, and about 11.30 p.m. I heard cries of "Murder" and "Police!" and saw about thirty men surrounding five, outside the Connaught Gate—the prisoner had a stick in his hand, and struck Kelly with it as he laid on the ground—I tried to force my way through the crowd to belly's assistance, but they threatened that they would b—well pay me if I did not get out of it—I drew my truncheon and forced my way to Kelly's side, who pointed out the prisoner as the person who had assaulted him, and gave him in custody.
Cross-examined. Kelly had a belt in his hand; I did not see him knocked down—the prisoner's face was bleeding.
WILLIAM TOPHAM (K 346). I was on duty near the Connaught Gate about 11.30, and heard persons shouting "Murder" and "Police!"—I went to the spot and saw about thirty men—sticks, belts, bricks, and lumps of ice were being used—I saw Fawks holding the prisoner against the gate; Kelly was bleeding from his mouth and from the top of his head—a man threw a lump of ice—I went after him and caught hold of the prisoner—on the way to the station he said, "They have made a mistake"—he was charged at the station.
Cross-examined. He was bleeding—he said, "I have got some blood coming from me somewhere"—he did not say who had done it
TIMOTHY COLEMAN . I was employed on board the Scotland—I was returning on 5th January, about 11.30, and when I got about twenty yards from the Connaught Dock gate the prisoner and Lynch stopped us, and one asked where we were going—Kelly said, "I am going into the dock"—he asked what boat he was going on board of—Kelly said, "The Scotland," and then he was hit on his mouth with a stick—I think it was Hadley who hit him, but I won't be sure; I have a little doubt about him.
DAVID FOSTER . I was employed on the Scotland—on 5th January, about 11.30, I was returning to the dock gate, and about twenty yards off it was accosted by several men; one of them asked where we were going—the answer was, "To the Scotland," and Richardson struck me on ray face—I was knocked down and kicked—I did not notice what happened to Kelly—I saw the prisoner there.
WILLIAM PERCIVAL (Policeman). I know the prisoner by seeing him about—I saw him in North Woolwich with a number of others, keeping observation on the railway station from the night of December 29th to New Year's morning, on persons coming to and from the docks, and sometimes following them—I positively identify him.
WILLIAM VANCE . I am a surgeon, of High Street, North Woolwich—on 6th January I saw Kelly at the station—he was quite sober—he was suffering from contused wounds on his head and lip, and one of his teeth was loose—the wound might be occasioned by a stick or any blunt instrument.
GUILTY .— Three Months' Hard Labour.
MR. LEONARD Prosecuted, and MR. ROUTH Defended.
THOMAS WILLIS . I am a solicitor, and am retained to prosecute by Coleman; I also act for his employers—I was before the Magistrate—the prisoner objected to be tried summarily, and asked to go for trial.
TIMOTHY COLEMAN repeated his former evidence, and added: When we got to the Connaught Dock gate the prisoner overtook me and asked where I was going—I said, "Into the dock"—he stepped back a few yards and picked up some pieces of brick and threw two, one of which hit me on my left shoulder and knocked me down—I felt the effects for a week afterwards; I pointed him out to a policeman, and he was taken in custody.
Cross-examined. I never saw him before—it was rather dark, the
nearest light was about 100 yards off, an electric light—there were about thirty people, some tall and some short—I had been into three public-houses; if Kelly says it was four that is untrue—the prisoner said, "Take that, you bastard!" when he threw the brick.
Cross-examined. I never saw him before—I have never spoken to him; I was not near enough to see whether the brick hit anybody.
WILLIAM TOPHAM (K 346). I was at the dock gate, and saw a great disturbance, bricks, stones, and pieces of ice were being thrown, and a brick passed my head and hit Coleman; I turned round and saw the prisoner running away, but I did not see him throw it.
SUPERINTENDENT PURDAY . I saw Thomas Collins in bed this morning, and saw the doctor write this certificate.—the man has been ill for several weeks. (MR. ROUTH submitted that this witness could not prove the illness of Collins, not being a medical man. The RECORDER overruled this objection, as the Act stated that the illness could be proved by any credible witness.)—I was present before the Magistrate, and heard Collins sworn—he gave his evidence in the prisoners presence—it was taken down by the clerk and signed by Collins. (Read: "Thomas Collins, K 439. On 5th January, 1891, about 11.20 p.m., I saw Lynch throw two or three pieces of brick, one of which struck Coleman. He was running away, and I caught him, he said, 'I have been to see some friends; when I saw them fighting I ran away. 'When charged at the Police-station he said, 'If the brick has marked you I should like to see it.'
Cross-examined. He was five or six yards from Coleman when the brick was thrown. The electric light was shining. ")
SAMUEL BLAND (K 93). On 5th January, about 11.30, I heard cries of "Murder" and "Police!" and saw twenty or thirty men using sticks, stones, and bricks—this stick (produced) was found in an adjoining field; Lynch, Richardson, and Hadley were taken in custody, and another man who was not identified; I am positive the prisoner is one of the men.
JOHN WILKIE . I am medical officer at the Seamen's Hospital—Coleman was brought there on 12th January, suffering from a sprain on his upper arm—there was nothing to indicate that it was caused by a blow from any hard missile—he complained of other injuries; he was ill.
Cross-examined. If he had been struck by a brick I should expect to find a bruise at the end of the week—it would go through the various stages of blue and black.
By the COURT. I account for the sprain by exertion; throwing a cricket ball too hard would do it—it diet not appear to have been caused by a blow, or I should have expected to see some signs of a bruise.
GUILTY . MR. ROUTH, on a subsequent day, before the Common Serjeant, again raised the question of the admissibility of Collins' deposition, and the argument was postponed to next Session.—Judgment respited.
Before Mr. Common Serjeant.
MR. WARBURTON Defended.
JAMES RUSSELL . I live at Raberly Street, Bow—I am a seaman—on 15th January, about eight a.m., I was coming with Elliott from the Central Station to go to work on the Jalunga, of the British India Company—she is a ship—non-Union men work on her—the prisoner came and said, "I want to speak to you"—I said, "What do you want?"—he took my arm; I walked on; he followed me along; then he said, "Are you going in that ship?"—we had only gone two or three paces—I said, "I don't know; I am only working by the day"—ha said, "You ought to come out of her and work like a man, and act as a man"—I said I would not come out of the ship; I had been a long time out of a ship, and "I don't know whether I am going in her or not, but I do not intend to come out of her"—I had not signed articles—he said, "If you come out of her I can get you a clean ticket, and take you to a boarding-house, where you will be able to live"—I said I would not do such a thing; I was not going to leave my wife and old friends and go to a boarding-house and get into debt—we were getting close to the ship—he said, "You won't come out of the ship?"—I said, "No, I will not; I won't have nothing to do with you or the Union"—he caught me by the right arm, and struck me by the right temple with his fist, saying at the same time, "You b—! I'll kill you"—then I struck him on the nose—he turned to Elliott, who was stooping to pick up my cap which the prisoner had knocked off, and struck him twice—he struck him on the mouth—another man was squaring up to me—they spoke to each other, and ran away, singing out, "When we get you outside we will kill you"—I went on board my ship—Elliott gave information to the police.
Cross-examined. I did not prosecute—Elliott prosecuted—the ship-owners prosecute, not the Federation—the Jalunga is boycotted—I don't know why—the sailors and firemen sign articles on board—they formerly, signed at the Board of Trade offices and elsewhere; there has been an alteration in the system—I get five shillings a day; no rations—I am married—I have no children—when I sign articles I get £4 a month, and when quartermaster £4 5s.—I hold a master's certificate—I am not a blackleg—I did not so thoroughly recognise the prisoner at the Police-court, but I did in the train—I never said, "Either this man or another struck me"—I said he was very like the man—I signed my deposition, and if I said it it would be true—I said I believed the prisoner was the man—he had a fresh mark on the nose—Elliott belonged to the Union—I know nothing about the prisoner.
Re-examined. The prisoner is the man—I was thoroughly convinced before the Magistrate he was the man, but as I did not know I was entitled to swear to him then; I said he was to the best of my belief.
WILLIAM HENRY ELLIOTT . I live at 3, Fields Terrace—about eight a.m. on 15th January I was leaving the Central Station with Russell to go to work on the Jalunga—the prisoner came and spoke to Russell—he said he could get Russell into a house and give him a clear card if he
would come out of the ship—I was then following them—my hands are crippled—I am an able seaman—the prisoner caught Russell by the arms—Russell said, "I don't want to come out of the ship, I have a wife and family to look after"—near the Jalunga the prisoner struck Russell in the head—Russell's cap fell off—Russell struck him back—I stooped to pick up the cap, when the prisoner struck me in the mouth—I told the prisoner, he was a cowardly hound to strike a cripple who could not strike him back—the prisoner said, "Well, I'll give you all the more," and he struck me two blows after that—the prisoner and another man ran away—I went on the ship and reported to the police—I went down the road with a plain clothes man who had been on night duty, and another policeman went another way—I pointed out the prisoner and the other man standing outside the Central Station—when they saw me they ran—the police gave chase, and captured the prisoner, the other got away—the prisoner was brought to me and I identified him—I have no doubt he is the man he was taken to North Woolwich Police-station and charged—he was bleeding from the nose when brought to me—Russell struck him in the face.
Cross-examined. I was coming from my home at Erith—I do not now belong to the Union—since I came out of hospital, nigh on three months, I had 5s. a day—I have a wife and family at home—I have a knowledge of the prisoner's face, but I would not swear to seeing him before.
WILLIAM PERCIVAL (K 243). I was doing duty at the Royal Albert Docks on 15th January—about 8 a.m., from information given me by Elliott, I went on the quay with another officer and Elliott—I saw the prisoner about twenty-five yards off with another man; they had a hurried conversation and ran away-Elliott had said something which caused me to look at the prisoner and the other man—I ran and captured the prisoner—he said, "I don't know what you want me for, sir"—I said, "You'll know when you see this man"—when Elliott came up he said, "That is the man that struck me"—I had overtaken the prisoner in about fifty to sixty yards' chase—he slipped, then I slipped, and he got away—I pursued and recaptured him; I ran about one hundred yards; I held him till Elliott came up—the side of the prisoner's nose was bleeding—he was taken to the station and charged with assault and intimidation—he said, "It is all false. "
Cross-examined. I have not inquired about the prisoner's character.
WILLIAM PARSONS (Inspector K). I took the charge against the prisoner on 15th January—he said, "It is false, it is all d—lies"—he gave his address as the Seamen and Firemen's Union Office, Victoria Dock Road—I was present on the remand; I heard the prisoner by his solicitor elect to go for trial.
Cross-examined. I was present on the first occasion—he was brought up, no evidence taken, he was committed on the second occasion.
Re-examined. The Magistrate said he was willing to deal with the assault.
MR. WARBURTON submitted that by the 38 and 39 Vic., c. 8, s. 7, in order to show a foundation for the intimidation counts, it must be proved that on appearing before the Magistrate, and before evidence was taken, the prisoner ought to have been given the choice where he would be dealt with; but as the evidence had been taken first, and a remand, those counts were lad. The COMMON SERJEANT held that the prisoner could not take advantage of his own laches, the words being: "The accused may, on appearing before a Court of
Summary Jurisdiction, declare that he objects to being tried by a Court of Summary Jurisdiction."
GUILTY — Four Months' Hard Labour, being Two Months on each Case.
MR. LEONARD Prosecuted, and MR. LAWLESS Defended.
DAVID FOSTER repeated his former evidence, and added: Richardson said, "Where are you going?"—I said, "To the steamship Scotland "—he said, "I will give you Scotland, you b—!" and struck me a blow on my mouth with a stick—I was hustled by a number of other men, and knocked down and kicked—I had to go to the hospital—I had not provoked the prisoner in any way.
Cross-examined. Five of us spent the evening together—we did not drink at many public-houses—we went to the Royal Artillery canteen, Woolwich, and stayed there till closing-time—I was with Kelly the whole evening—I did not hear him say he could not count the number of public-houses he went to afterwards—we did not go to seven public-houses afterwards, it might have been one or two—he might have left me for half an hour—I swear it was the prisoner who said, "I will give you Scotland, you b—!"—Hadley did not say it to me, this occurred about 100 yards from the lamp; I had never seen the prisoner before—Kelly was in advance of me, and some dispute arose with him, and there was a general scrimmage, and I had to protect myself—I did not notice at the Police-station that the prisoner's head was injured he said, "I saw the row, and came up to see what was going on"—I was with the remainder of the men, and one or two of them were in advance of me—they had not all sticks; two sticks had been produced; I am not finding the money for the prosecution—I was away from work upwards of three weeks after this—I do not suffer from consumption; there was nothing wrong with my chest till after the scrimmage of that night.
Re-examined. I am sure it was the prisoner who spoke to me and referred to the ship Scotland, and struck me—two of my friends were in advance of me; we all came up the road straggling along, one a little in front of the other.
Cross-examined. I did not exactly see the commencement of the row—I do not know what may have happened before—I saw Kelly, but did not see a belt in his hand—I had been with Foster and Kelly the whole evening—I had not been to the canteen—I might have met them after they had been there—I was in one public-house—I went out with Kelly at 7.30 or 8 o'clock; I did not stay in his company till 11.30; we left him in North Woolwich for about two hours—after I met him again we only went to one public-house—there was an electric light 100 yards away—when he was kicking Foster there was a general row all round.
Re-examined. I am perfectly sure I saw the prisoner kick Foster.
Hadley said, "I will give you Scotland, you bastard I" the prisoner came up and struck Foster on his face with a stick, and he fell down.
Cross-examined. When the prisoner was fighting with Poster a general scrimmage was going on—Hadley commenced the row—we all went to help Foster—I had never seen the prisoner before—I was not with Kelly the whole evening—I saw Kelly with his belt in his hand.
Re-examined. It was not Kelly who struck me, I do not know who it was, about thirty attacked me; I saw the prisoner with Lynch and Hadley—I said before the Recorder, "Kelly, Hadley, and three or four more came up"—the prisoner was one of the four—Hadley commenced the row, and the prisoner was with him after that, and when he referred to the Scotland. (Mr. LEONARD proposed to put in the deposition of Thomas Collins, but upon Mr. LAWLESS raising the same objection as in Lynch's case (see page 511), he did not press for the reception of the evidence.)
JOHN WILKIE . I am medical officer at the Seamen's Hospital, Albert Docks—I examined Foster on 7th January—he was sent to me by a medical man—I found him suffering from severe pain and tenderness over the liver and ribs, and congestion of the lungs, with some pleurisy, and some bruises about his mouth—I came to the conclusion that he was suffering from disease in the right side of his chest, and that he had had a previous attack of illness—I saw him last about 16th January, he was then very much improved—he was discharged about that time—he spat blood—I cannot say the cause of that, it is one of the symptoms of disease in the chest, and it comes on through violence too—what I saw was consistent with his being kicked and knocked down—he was not able to attend at the Police-court on the first occasion.
Cross-examined. His principal symptom was congestion of the lungs—that might be produced by violence, not always from cold—there was the mark of a blow on his mouth—if a man is kicked violently on the side when on the ground I should expect to find a mark, but I found none—if I had not heard anything about the kick I should have thought that the congestion of the lungs came from cold.
GUILTY .— Three Months' Hard Labour.
MR. HUTTON and MR. ROUTH Prosecuted; MR. KEITH FRITH and MR. SANDS Defended the Prisoner.
NOT GUILTY .
MR. HUTTON Prosecuted, and MR. WARBURTON Defended.
FREDERICK ADAMS . I live at 46, Devon's Road, Bromley, and am a donkeyman on board a ship—on 3rd January I signed articles and commenced to work on the Aurangi, a ship stationed in the docks, belonging to the New Zealand Steamship Company—I worked on that ship till Thursday, 8th January; all my things were on board, she was going to sail on the 9th—on the 8th my wife sent to the ship to me about a calamity that had happened to my little girl—in consequence of that, about 10.30 p.m., I left the ship to go home—travelling from North
Woolwich to Canning Town station, a man spoke to me in the train, and in consequence of what he said I got out at the Tidal Basin—that was between twelve and one-inside the Seamen's Union office there I saw the prisoner—he accompanied me home in a cab, and remained in my kitchen all night, I sleeping in the bedroom with my wife—the cabman called for me between five and six the following morning—before starting I wound up my watch in the prisoner's presence, he saw me do it—I wear my chain at the back of my waistcoat, and it comes through the armhole to the watch pocket—the prisoner saw how it was attached—I had a top coat on, buttoned up, and another coat underneath, buttoned by the top button—I and the prisoner went by cab to Canning Town Station; I wanted to go to my ship; I was prevented from getting my ticket—I walked with the prisoner to Tidal Basin; he had prevented me getting a ticket—I was prevented again at Tidal Basin from getting a ticket by the men he called out of a public-house—I walked down Victoria Dock Road to Custom House Station, still followed by the prisoner and three or four more—at Custom House Station the prisoner called to a crowd of men standing round, "Here is one of the blacklegs on the Aurangi; I am going to keep him away from his ship"—I was hustled back by the prisoner arid others, and I returned on foot to Tidal Basin—there a tall man in the crowd came at the back of me, and lifted my arms, and the prisoner in front of me ripped open my coats, and ripped the waistcoat open, breaking the buttons and the Albert, and wrenching it from the waistcoat; I then had three stunning blows on the head, and I fell in the snow; I don't know who struck the blows—I was after that assisted to my own house—I subsequently came out with my wife in search of my ship, but found it had gone—I am positive the prisoner is the man who took my watch—he came to my house with my consent; he was sent by the Union to look after me, in consequence of what took place in the Union office; I was going to join the Union—I gave information to the New Zealand Shipping Company, and afterwards to the police—I gave a description of the prisoner—I pointed him out and saw him arrested—he said, "I have never seen him before. "
Cross-examined. A mistake was made at the Police-court in saying I said I first met the prisoner in the train; I did not say so, and I explained it to the Magistrate—I met a delegate in the train, who took me to the Union office and introduced me to the prisoner—there was a third man in the office; we had a conversation there—the prisoner was there all the time—I saw the prisoner at the Union office—then he went home with me and slept in my kitchen—my watch was passed through the armhole of my waistcoat so (describing)—you cannot get it unless you get the waistcoat open—I have not my torn clothes here—the buttons were torn from my coat—I went to the Union meeting in the evening—I was robbed at 9.10 or 9.12 a.m.—I did not complain to the police, because I was scared after being knocked about, and in danger of my life, I was glad to get home—the robbery was outside the Tidal Basin Station—that is a frequented thoroughfare—there is always a policeman or two on duty; there were no police that morning—I was picked up and led home—I did not know what I was doing—a young fellow led me home, and then I came with my wife—he did not offer to fetch the police—my home is about two miles from where I was robbed—I walked
the whole way—I could not speak, I could just remember my address—I had no money for a cab, and a good job, or I should have lost it—I stayed in till five o'clock—I did not go to any public-house the afternoon before—I went to Stratford Market Station—that is a mile and a quarter from my home—I had five minutes' walk to the train—I went to apprehend my man—my ship had gone to sea; I had been nearly kicked to death; I reported myself to the New Zealand Shipping Office the next morning, and they referred me to a solicitor—I reported myself to the Inspector—the Aurangi sailed at eleven a.m. on Friday—she was detained by the fog—I had everything on board—I was going to my ship when I was stopped by this man, who was sent from the Union office for my protection—I was pressed to join the Union—the Aurangi is a ship the Union men are not allowed to join—I paid" my entrance fee, £2 5s., to pacify the Union, and they stopped me getting my vessel—the Aurangi sailors sign articles on board—that is why she is boycotted—I am allowed to work for any firm in the United Kingdom—I was working at Rait and Gardner's when I was sent to the Aurangi, and as a non-Unionist I could go on any ship—I wanted to satisfy the Union by paying for my clearance card, besides holding my tickets for the Masters' Federation—a man is justified in holding as many tickets as he likes; the Union approves of it—300 or 400 men have gone away—my wife complained to the police—I did complain that evening to a policeman on duty at the Tidal Basin.
Re-examined. I am sure the prisoner stole my watch—the Federation employ Union and non-Union men—I attended the Union on 8th January, because the delegate in the train at the Custom House asked me if I was "a man"—"a man" means one who submits to the rules of the Union—when I read the mistake in my evidence before the Magistrate I corrected it—the solicitor did not ask me to produce my clothes—I have them—they are not here.
ELIZABETH ADAMS . I am the wife of the last witness—between twelve and one on 8th and 9th January my husband came home with the prisoner—they left together between five and six—I did not see the prisoner again—I can swear to him—I wished him good morning.
Cross-examined. I went in the afternoon to the Unionist meeting about five with my husband—I was with him all the evening; we did not speak to a policeman—I was with my husband when he complained to a policeman in the great yard of the school of the beating he had received—he did not say anything of the watch being stolen—he bought his present watch in the Colonies—he had two.
Re-examined. I was excited and very much terrified—my husband was in search of his ship when he was pushed in to the meeting—he was very much knocked about—we went home—he did not go out again that evening—I took no part in the conversation—I heard it—he started out that morning with the cabman—he did not come back with him.
FREDERICK SWEETINGHAM . I am a cab proprietor and driver, of 21, Hallsville Road, Canning Town—early on 9th January I drove Adams and the prisoner to 146, Devon's Road, Bromley—I left them, and called for them about six—I drove them to Canning Town Station—Ihad good opportunity of seeing the prisoner—I have no doubt about him.
Cross-examined. I have driven numbers since—my cab is a hansom—the prisoner is a stranger—it was dark, and about one o'clock when I
took them—I daresay I could identify the fares I took that evening—I gave evidence when they fetched me—I don't know whether it was 22nd January.
Re-examined. I don't often take the same people at night and in the morning—we drank together—I had rum and coffee opposite Canning Town Station between six and seven.
WILLIAM GURD (K 449). On 22nd January, about 11.30, Adams made a communication to me in the Tidal Basin Road, Victoria Docks—I followed him on to the quay and on to the ship Mentmore—Adams pointed to the prisoner and said, "This is the man who stole my watch from me on Tuesday at the Tidal Basin Station, on the 9th inst., and I will charge him"—the prisoner said, "I have never seen you before"—I said to the prisoner, "I shall take you into custody on this charge, and you will have to come with me to the station"—he said, "Certainly," and went quietly—at the station he was charged—he gave this address: 2, Foxlow Street, Bermondsey—I made inquiries.
Cross-examined. I did not hear him say, "That is where I was born"—whatever was found on him was handed to the inspector—his address is 2, Fulton Street, Canning Town—that is some miles away.
Re-examined. He was asked his address; not where he was born.
THOMAS MARNER (Inspector K). I was on duty when the prisoner was brought into Canning Town Station—he was charged with stealing a watch—he was asked his address—he gave some address to the constable—nothing was said about his being born there—prisoners are asked where they reside—the prisoner's address is six or seven miles from the one he gave—the papers we found on him were handed to him back; they did not relate to the charge—they are discharges and a Union card.
Cross-examined. The discharges are in his name, and give him an excellent character—he has not been in trouble that I am aware—I got his address from the mistress of the sailors' boarding-house where he had been lodging, when she came to inquire about him.
Re-examined. She had cashed a bank note for him, and met me in the street.
GUILTY — Six Months' Hard Labour.
MR. GRUBBE Prosecuted; MR. BLACKWELL Defended Burdett, and MR. PURCELL Defended Saunders.
HARRY CLARKE YOUNG . I keep the Dun Cow, at Chingford—I occupy a field at Hale End, Walthamstow, about a mile and a quarter from my house, and adjoining Chingford Hatch—I had five horses in that field on 8th December, about eight in the evening; one belonged to Mr. Hempstead—we missed three on the 9th about nine a.m.; two were young colts without shoes, belonging to me, and the third one was Mr. Hempstead's pony—I know Burdett by sight, I have several times seen him in the
neighbourhood of Chingford—I saw him pass lay house before the horses were lost—I gave information to the police, and I received from them information which led me to go to Hitchin on 1st January—I saw there my colts, still without shoes—there wag a frost on the night of 8th December, and I could see the tracks the horses had made, leaving the field, frozen in hard.
Cross-examined by MR. BLACKWELL. A good many people go to Chingford in the summer; it is a popular place.
GEORGE BURGESS (Sergeant N 208). I was stationed at Chingford in December—I saw Burdett once at Chingford in December, before the 8th—lie was coming from the direction of Oakhill, about a quarter of a mile from the field where the horses were; he was coming from the direction of the field.
Cross-examined by MR. BLACKWELL. It was a few days previous to the 8th—this neighbourhood is very popular; a good many people go about there.
WILLIAM PRINCE (N 195). lama plain clothes constable at Stoke Newington—on the morning of 1st January I had received certain instructions, and got to the Great Northern "Railway Station, King's Gross, at six—about 6.45 I saw Saunders riding a pony and leading two other horses; Burdett was following in the road behind, urging the horses forward, with a stick—they entered the station-yard; Burdett went to the horses' heads—I next saw the horses being put into horse-box No. 1212—Burdett was standing by; he moved his arms as if making motions to someone inside the box—a short time before the train started the box was attached to the train, and Burdett entered a carriage of the train—I saw the train leave the station—Saunders rode away on the pony after the Horses had been put into the box—I; ascertained where the horses were booked to, and sent a telegram to Hitchin—I did not go to Hitchin—I next saw Burdett at 12.33, at Finsbury Park; he was in custody then—I have since seen Mr. Young's horses; I believe they are the horses I saw put into the horse-box—about 2 p.m. I went to Jacob Street, Shoreditch; Sergeant Brockwell went in first—I was called in and I saw Saunders there—I said in his presence he was the man who had been at King's Cross that morning—when Brockwell spoke to him I heard him say he had not been at King's Cross that morning.
Cross-examined by MR. BLACKWELL. I first saw the prisoners at the bottom of Pentonville Road—I saw no one else with them; only they and the horses were in the road; a great number of other persons were about—I might have lost sight of the prisoners for a second—I did not see the horses taken to the horse-box; I went round the further way to the station, so that I could keep observation on the horse-box; if I had followed them they might have seen me, and I could not have watched them—I did not see the tickets taken—there were three or four men in the carriage into which Burdett got.
Cross-examined by MR. PURCELL. I was not present when Brockwell said to Saunders, "I shall arrest you on a charge of stealing these horses"—all I heard was Saunders say, "I was not at King's Cross this morning"—he appeared a little agitated—I suppose they were talking about arresting him when I went in.
o'clock we secreted ourselves—we saw the 8.45 train come in; a horse-box was attached to it—I saw Burdett and another man come out of the station and go up the main road—about ten o'clock they returned to the station—shortly afterwards Burdett came out of the station leading two horses, followed by the other man and Detective Sergeant Smith, who was some distance behind—we then came out from the place we were concealed in, and found Burdett detained by Smith, who was also holding the two horses—I secured Burdett, and Brock well came and helped me, Smith holding the horses—we took them towards the station—on the way Burdett said to me, "I met a man at six o'clock this morning by Shoreditch Church, as we were going to Billingsgate Market, and he asked me to bring the horses down here"—he was taken to the station—he was asked his name—he said, "I refuse to give it"—afterwards I and Brock well brought him to London—he gave his name and address at Stoke Newington Station as Charles Burdett, 18, Boundary Street, Shoreditch—he gave no other address, but I had received some information, in consequence of which I went with other officers to 8, Jacob Street, Shoreditch, which is another place occupied by Burdett—we found Saunders there and two ponies, a grey and a bay—the bay was cut and hacked about—it had been recently clipped, and the tail had been docked, and the dock was bleeding—the two prisoners were afterwards taken to Walthamstow and charged—I went with Brock well to the Butler's Arms—Burdett gave me no information as to the third stable that he had there.
Cross-examined by MR. BLACKWELL. Another man came from the train and out of the station with Burdett; they were talking and laughing together—the other man was not there when I came there—Burdett passed within 120 yards of where I was concealed, followed by Smith—Burdett was arrested about 150 yards from the station—I was outside the station in a coffee tavern—I did not see Burdett and the other man get out of the train, I saw them leave the station—Burdett I found did live at 18, Boundary Road; he carries on a fish-curer's business at 8, Globe Street—I did not hear what Burdett said to Smith when he was arrested.
Cross-examined by MR. PURCELL. Saunders was not the other man at Hitchin—we found Saunders at work curing haddocks—there were a good many of us—Brockwell and Glass are biggish men—when he saw me come in he got rather agitated.
Re-examined. When the prisoners were charged at Walthamstow they made no reply.
By MR. BLACKWELL. Burdett had said to me that a man asked him to take the horses to Hitchin.
JAMES SMITH (Detective Sergeant N). On the morning of 1st January I went to Hitchin with Sergeants Hearn and Brock well, in consequence of a telegram we received—we there kept observation on the station—at 8.45 I saw Burdett and another man come out of the station and go down into Hitchin town—I went to the station and saw a horse-box No. 1212—I concealed myself in a shed, and kept observation on the box, and about ten or a little after Burdett and the other man came back into the station with a railway official, who let down the lid of box J212—Burdett entered the box and brought out one horse, and gave the halter to the man; then he went in and fetched out the other horse—he took hold of both halters and walked out of the station—I followed into the main road
—some little distance from the station I stopped Burdett, and said, "Where are you going to with those horses?"—he said, "Down here "—I said, "They are very young things; where have you brought them from?"—they were colts without shoes; one had had a shoe on—the prisoner said, "I have brought them from the station for that man," pointing to a man on the path, who was going away as fast as he could—Sergeant Hearn came up after a minute and took charge of Burdett—I took charge of the horses, and kept them under my care till seven p.m.—the other man ran away and is not here—shortly after seven p.m. Mr. Young came to Hitchin and identified the horses—their legs were matted with horse manure as though they had been shut up for some considerable time—they bad cloths and halters on.
Cross-examined by MR. BLACKWELL. Burdett did not say to me when I arrested him, "Why did not you go after the other man?"—I was about five yards off when Brockwell came up—Hearn took Burdett from me, and afterwards Brockwell came up.
THOMAS BROCKWELL (Detective Sergeant). On 1st January I went, with the other witnesses, to Hitchin, and concealed myself, and waited for the train to come in—I saw a horse-box attached to the train—I saw Burdett come out of the railway station—Smith detained him, Hearn took hold of him, and then I came up—he said, "What is this for?"—I said, "You will be charged with stealing those two horses from Chingford "—he said, "Why don't you go after that other man?"—I did not see any other man; he was by himself when I arrived—we took him into Hitchin railway station, where Hearn asked him his name—he said, "I refuse to tell you"—I searched, and found this padlock key in his right-hand trousers pocket—I said, "What is this the key of?"—he said, "I refuse to tell you "—I also found a small pocket-book in his coat pocket, in it was written, "Prince Albert, Prince of Wales, Chingford Hatch, Essex;" the page was folded down—that afternoon I went with other officers to 8, Globe Street—Burdett had not given me that address, and I had no suspicion he had anything to do with it, but I had received information—we found there in a stable at the back of the house two ponies, one of them had been clipped and recently docked—you have to take horses through the house to the stable—Saunders came out of the smoke-hole, it is a place where haddocks and herrings are cured—I asked his name, he said "Saunders,"—I said, "You answer the description of a man who was seen taking two horses to King's Cross Station this morning, and I shall arrest you on suspicion for being concerned with Charles Burdett in stealing those horses "—he became very much agitated, and said, "I was not at King's Cross "—Prince came in just after that, and pointed Saunders out as the man he had seen with the horses that morning; he said so—after that I went to 18, Boundary Street, the address Burdett had given; he lives there—I there found in a chest of drawers in the back parlour five head collar ropes and three new halters, which appear to be the same as these others—that evening I went to Hitchin with Mr. Young, and I was with him when he saw the horses—on the afternoon of 2nd January I went with another officer to the Butlers' Arms, Butler Street, Bethnal Green—I had not received information from Burdett as to his occupying a stable there—It is a low part of London—I went into the yard at the back of the public-house—I found this key opened the padlock of the second stable on the right in
the yard—I went in; the stable was very filthy; there was a great deal of recent horse-dung there, no straw—the state the horses were in when they were taken to Hitchin was consistent with them having been some time in this stable—the long hair on their legs was matted with it, pretty well up to their knees—no horse was in the stable, only manure and A horse-cloth—I saw the landlord, John Foxhall—I was present when the prisoners were charged with stealing two horses, the property of Mr. Young, and with receiving them—they made no reply.
Cross-examined by MR. BLACKWELL. Subsequently Burdett said he lived at 18, Boundary Street; he did not at first—he told us that when Inspector Glass was there—you would probably find a great many dirty stables in a low part of London, and dirty horses too—there are public-houses named the Prince of Wales and Prince Albert in Chingford.
JOHN FOXHALL . I keep the Butlers' Arms, Butler Street, Bethnal Green—Burdett rented a stable from me from August last to the time the constables came in January—he paid half a crown a week—the constables called my attention to the condition of the stable when they came—this key is not mine; I know nothing of it—I had nothing to do with the padlock.
THOMAS BROCKWELL (Re-examined by MR. PURCELL). I know nothing against Saunders; so far as I know he is a respectable man—he works at the haddock-curing business—he had worked at that place for some time—I did not know if he was a servant, or what he was.
ARTHUR WILLIAM HEMPSTEAD . I live at Green Leaf Lane, Walthamstow, and am a butcher—in December I had a bay pony with a white star on its forehead, a long tail, and all its hair on, in Mr. Young's field—on 8th December I saw it at 3 o'clock p.m., when I caught it in the field, and coaxed it, and then left it there with four others—I next saw my pony on 1st January at the Police-station, Stoke Newington—it had been clipped, and the tail had been docked and was bleeding—I had been looking for it in the interval, and had given information to the police about it—it had a peculiar tooth, and had a half-shoe on.
The Prisoners' statements before the Magistrate: Burdett said he was Not Guilty. Saunders said that on 1st January, at 5.30 a. m., a man came along with two horses, and asked him to help take them to King's Cross Station; that on Burdett coming up he (Saunders) asked him to come, and that they both went; that at King's Cross the gentleman asked Burdett to go with him for the day, and he would pay him for his trouble, and gave him (Saunders) £1 5s., and told him to go to market.
Saunders received a good character from one witness.
GUILTY of Receiving. — Saunders was strongly recommended to mercy by the JURY, as they believed he was influenced by Burdett.
BURDETT— Five Years' Penal Servitude.
SAUNDERS— Four Months' Hard Labour.
MR. E. BEARD Prosecuted, and MR. KEITH FRITH Defended.
THOMAS CREAGH . I am a dock constable, attached to the Royal Victoria Docks—on Monday, January 12th, about 7.20, I was in the docks with Jeffers, a dock constable—we saw a van belonging to Pickford standing outside their office, inside the docks; the van-guard Branch appeared to be fumbling among the frozen sheep, with which, and four
cases of kidneys, the van was loaded—it was rather dark, and I could not see what he was doing—I spoke to Branch, and he said something to me, in consequence of which I searched the van and found this cloth, which had been taken off a sheep, with six pounds of kidneys—I also found this handkerchief, with two pounds of kidneys concealed between two sheep—the sheep were placed lengthways in the van—I asked Branch if the handkerchief was his, and he said, "Yes"—while I was examining the contents of the van the prisoner came up—I said, "Do you know anything about these kidneys?"—he said, "Yes, that is all right, the case fell off the van and got broken; the kidneys got scattered about the road; I picked them up, and I put them in this bag"—he said he took the bag off one of the sheep—the carman came up then—when he came up he said he had been to the office to borrow a hammer to nail up the case—that was his excuse for being away from the van—that was all the conversation I remember—kidneys are generally placed in square boxes with the battens one or two inches apart to let air in, as they are kept in refrigerators—the centre batten was removed from the one which was deficient in kidneys—I should think it would be quite easy to raise one of these battens; it had the appearance of having been nailed down again, the nail was bent—if it had fallen off the van it would have fallen two to three feet; I examined the case—I found no other damage to it than that of the batten having been raised—the case is not here, it has been delivered—the general state of the roads on that night was very slushy and dirty; it had been thawing all day, and the roads were completely cut up—there were no marks of mud on the case; it was quite clean, and the kidneys in the. cloth and handkerchief had no marks of mud on them, they were almost frozen together—if the case and the kidneys had fallen on the ground, and the kidneys been scattered, the kidneys would have been covered with mud—the prisoner accompanied us to the Police-station, where he was handed over to the Metropolitan Police.
Cross-examined. He told me the case fell off the van in the docks; I could not say at what place—there are railway metals in the docks—I am positive all the dock roads were dirty that day—if the case did fall off and break, it was possible for the kidneys to come out—I should say that they and the box had not been wiped; I should not believe they had been—I saw no hammer—I only had his statement as to his going and asking Mr. May for a hammer; I do not know it is true—I nave great doubt as to his asking for a hammer—I heard May say at the Policecourt, "Cutts came to me and asked for a hammer "—Branch was charged and discharged; he is here.
Re-examined. If the kidneys had been wiped they would not have had the appearance they had; they were crystallised with the frost.
By the JURY. The bag had been taken off a sheep—the prisoner said he made it into a bag such as it is now—I noticed no other damage to the box except the raising of this batten—I thoroughly examined it.
By the COURT. The prisoner's van was loaded at 29 shed, and then he came to Messrs. Pickford's office, all inside the dock—it is 600 to 700 yards from where the van was loaded to where this discovery was made—the prisoner was then in Messrs. Pickford's employment.
Dock Committee—on Monday, January 12th, I was with Creagh at the Victoria Docks, about 7.20 p.m., and I saw one of Pickford's pair-horse vans standing within a few yards of Messrs. Pickford's office inside the docks—it was loaded with fifty-five carcases of mutton and four cases of sheep's kidneys—I saw the boy Branch handling the carcases in the body of the van—Creagh got into the van and discovered the kidneys; some in this white cloth were between the boy's feet in the body of the van, and others in this red handkerchief were between the carcases in the van—the cases were on the floor of the van, one on the left and three on the right-hand side—the tail-board was up—I saw the prisoner come from Pickford's office when Creagh was in the van—I said, "What is the matter?"—Creagh said, "Do you know anything about these kidneys?"—the prisoner replied, "Yes, they were part of the contents of one of the cases that fell off the van into the road. way"—he said he picked them up the best way he could, and intended to put them back in the case—he said he had been to the office to borrow a hammer to cooper the package up—one case had apparently been tampered with; a batten had been moved and the nail was driven in crookedly—it would not be a difficult matter to lever a batten up—externally the case was clean—the kidneys were thoroughly clean, frozen, there was not the slightest particle of dirt on them—the roadways, from the refrigerator to where the prisoner pulled up that night, were very muddy—I do not think the kidneys had been wiped—it was never suggested before that they were wiped—Kitching, the dock sergeant, came up and said, "What is the matter?" and the prisoner said, "It is me," and Creagh told him what was the matter; and the prisoner was taken to the Police-office with the kidneys and the case; and then I got a lantern and searched round the office—then the prisoner was given into the custody of a Metropolitan constable and charged—I have not seen the case since—I did not give evidence before the Magistrate.
Cross-examined. The roads all through the docks were very muddy that day—Branch was asked if the handkerchief belonged to him, and said, "Yes"—he said nothing about using it to take up dropped kidneys in—Creagh was present; I won't be positive if Creagh said that at the Policecourt.
By the JURY. Bound plain nails are used for these cases—the kidneys were loose in the case, not wrapped in anything—if kidneys were taken out you could see through the battens that some were gone—they could not fall through the battens—he should have taken them into the office—I don't know if he would have to weigh again before finally delivering—it is our duty to examine these vans.
Re-examined. I examined the case in consequence of the prisoner having said it had fallen off.
FREDERICK KITCHING . I am sergeant of the dock police at the Royal Victoria Docks—on 12th January, about twenty minutes past seven, I was on duty, and my attention was drawn to Creagh and Jeffers by one of Pickford's vans—I went up to it and saw the prisoner, who told me a case had fallen off the van—I said, "What is the matter?"—the prisoner said, "It is all right, Mr. Kitching; it is me; a case has fallen off my van into the road, broken open, and a quantity of the kidneys shook out; I took this cloth off one of the sheep, tied it up at the bottom, and put the kidneys in"—I examined all the cases, and found them all securely
nailed up, and there were no signs of their having been in the road; the middle batten of one of the cases, about three inches wide, had been prised up. and in nailing it down again the nail had turned over instead of going into the wood—he did not say at what part of the roadway it fell off—he would be inside the docks all the way from the refrigerator to Pickford's office—the roads were in a very bad state of slush that night, in consequence of the thaw—the case and the kidneys were perfectly clean, the kidneys were quite crystallised with frost—if they had been in the mud, and the mud had been wiped off, they must have shown it—I saw no hammer—the prisoner would receive a pass to go out of the gate; I asked him for it at the police office; he said he had lost it—I believe he should also receive a waybill—when the case was weighed after this it weighed 2 cwt. 1 qr.—I do not know what it had weighed before.
Cross-examined. It was not freezing on the night of 12th January—the case is not here; the goods were perishable, and Pickford's people wanted to deliver them—I think the prisoner said he had bent the nail in nailing it down.
WILLIAM JOHN MAY . I live at 6, Orient Terrace, Brunswick Street, Poplar, and am a clerk in Pickford and Co.'s service at the Victoria Docks office—about twenty minutes past seven on 12th January the prisoner came to the office for his waybill, the permission to take goods out—he also took a hammer, but I did not hear him ask for it, because I was busy then; the first I knew of it was when he afterwards brought it back, and said he had taken it, as he had had an accident with a case, a case had fallen off, and he wanted the hammer to mend the case up with—he would keep the ticket, it is his pass out of the docks—I made out this waybill: "Fifty-five sheep and four cases of kidneys. "
Cross-examined. I don't know if the goods would be weighed again when he got to his destination; we put no weight on the waybill—I saw Moss weigh it again—he said the kidneys had fallen out, and that he had picked them up.
WILLIAM MOSS . I live at Chanelsea Street, Stratford, and am a foreman in the employment of the London and India Joint Dock Committee—on 12th January I was on duty at the refrigerator at Victoria Docks—about a quarter-past six the prisoner came to me with one of Pickford's vans, and took fifty-five sheep and four boxes of kidneys—I had them weighed; they weighed 2 cwt. 1 qr. 6 lb.—I gave him a pass—the roadways in the docks were very muddy and dirty on this night; there had been a very sharp thaw during the day—about half-past seven Mr. Kitching sent for me—the prisoner was there, and could hear the conversation—Kitching asked me if I had delivered the sheep and kidneys to Messrs. Pickford's van—I said, "Yes"—he asked me if I knew the weights of them—I said, "Yes"—he said, "We have found some kidneys in the van with the man"; and I said, "We had better re-weigh the cases"; so we re-weighed them, and they weighed 2 cwt. 1 qr.—it was 6 lb. deficient—I noticed the cases; all appeared pretty clean and in good condition—the kidneys were all clean—the prisoner said nothing to me about a case having fallen off.
Cross-examined. I cannot say if there is any man at the gates to search vans going out—two constables are there for the purpose of searching men, not for searching vans—the vans are always liable to be searched
—the prisoner's load was not covered up when he left my place—the cases were actually delivered to the prisoner by the checker while I was some yards off making out the pass.
Re-examined. I did not see them weighed—I saw the condition of the cases—I have the checker's book in my pocket, with the weights—the checker called out the weights to me; the prisoner was not there, but he was there when the cases were weighed—the checker is not here.
HENRY SUMMERS "WELLS I live at 15, Birchwood Street, East India Road, and am an agent in Pickford's employment—on 12th January I was called to the Victoria Docks, and got there about 8.45—certain information was given to me about these four cases of kidneys, which I examined—this case was the same as the others, it had no appearance of any dirt—I found one batten had been sprung, and had been nailed down with a French nail, which had been bent over—the kidneys alleged to have fallen out were quite clean—I did not see the roadway at the part this happened, but, judging from every other portion of the road, it must have been in a very bad condition—it was a skeleton case, and you could see between the battens that some kidneys were missing—the value of the kidneys was about 8s.—the police-officers at the dock gates are supposed to examine our vans as they come out, to see that the packages correspond with the pass.
Cross-examined. Kidneys were evidently missing from one of the cases; there was not the slightest difficulty in seeing that—I don't suppose the officers would have gone so far as to have looked through the battens; it would be sufficient for them to see that the number of the packages was right—they would not know how the cases came from the refrigerator.
HERBERT DUBERRY (K 114). On January 12th I was called to the Victoria Docks, and the prisoner was given into my custody for stealing kidneys—on the way to the station he said, "How can they charge me with stealing the kidneys? they did not find them on me; they found them on the van"—when charged at the station he made no reply.
Witnesses for the Defence.
WILLIAM BRANCH . I am fifteen—I was in Messrs. Pickford's employment on 12th January, and had been with them for three months—I am not with them now—I was van-boy to the prisoner—on the night of 12th January, as we were coming from the meat-stores, our van skidded along the railway metals, and a case of kidneys fell off, and one of the battens flew open, and a lot of the kidneys fell out of the case—they and the case fell on to some frozen snow between the railway metals—there was no mud where the kidneys fell, only frozen snow—I kicked them together, and a man holloaed out to my mate, "Do you want any help?"—he said, "No; I think I can manage"—my mate gave me an order to get this sheep's cloth off a sheep and gather them up, and I did so—then I took my pocket-handkerchief for some other kidneys—I never counted how many I put into it—I heard the weight in the handkerchief was two pounds—I was subpoenaed to come here—we threw the kidneys on to the van, with the intention of getting a hammer at the office and putting them back again—we picked up a stone and tapped the case together—the prisoner told me he went for a hammer, but temporarily he just bent the nail over with a stone—we drove down to the office to get a hammer and nails to put them back and nail the case up, to prevent them coming out again—I put the clothful and handkerchief full of kidneys on a sheep nil
we got to the office—they were not concealed in any way—I was charged before the Magistrate, and discharged.
Cross-examined. Mr. Willis appeared for the prisoner at the Policecourt—I was discharged there before the case was finished—Mr. Willis called me into the witness-box, but I gave no evidence—the prisoner has been out on bail—I have seen him several times since he was sent for trial—I have never said a word to him about this case—we had gone a distance equal to about the width of this Court from the refrigerator when the case dropped off—we were quite close to where Mr. Moss was—we did not go back to him, we thought we would get back to Pickford's clerk—that office is a good distance off—these cases were packed behind on the tail-board, which was up—I told nobody that night that the case had fallen off on frozen snow; my mate told Creagh, Moss, and Kitching that he had had an accident—this was not a heap of frozen snow; it was level—the road was not slushy; it was frozen snow—the kidneys rolled about a little distance—they were perfectly clean when I picked them up—I did not wipe them; I have not heard any suggestion of the kidneys being wiped before—it was impossible to put them back; it was dark; we wanted to fix them properly, because they are weighed when we get to the market—my mate threw my handkerchief out, and said, "If you find any there, put them in that"—the man who asked if he should help us was one of rickford's men—he is here—I did not accept his offer of help—I made a statement to Mr. Millett; I do not know what I said to him, I was so threatened and bullied—I did not tell him the case fell off on frozen snow; I do not know what I did say.
ALBERT BECKLEY . I live at 12, Market Place, Wandsworth Road, and am a carman in Pickford's employment—on 12th January I was coming from the meat-shed to our office, and saw a van standing alongside the road—when I got to it, I saw it was one of our vans, and a man, who was the prisoner, I believe, was standing at the tail-board stooping down and picking something up—I called out "Do you want any help?" and he replied, "No, I think I can manage now—I went on, it was very dark and slippery; I had all my attention to pay to the horses; the ground was very hard indeed that night—there are metals on each side of the road, and between the metals it is a hard black road, which was frozen very hard—I don't believe there was snow where the case fell, it was a hard black road, clean ground—the prisoner drove up to the office just after me and said, "I have had an accident"—he recognised me by my holloaing out—he said, "Thad a case fall off, and I am going to ask for the loan of a hammer "—I went on with my load, and that is all I know—that was the first time I ever spoke to him, I believe—there are thousands of carmen in Pickford's employment; I don't know them all—I have been subpoenaed to come here—I have lost six days' work through coming here—I have not been discharged by Messrs. Pickford, I believe I am with them still—I did not go to the Police-court.
Cross-examined. I passed right by the van, it was very dark—I saw a man picking up something, I don't know what it was; I was on my dickey—there might be difficulty in finding all the kidneys in the dark—I did not know a case had fallen off till I got to the office—I saw no case on the ground—all I can say about the case is what he told me—I knew that the prisoner was in custody the same night, because some more carts
were behind me, and the carmen said, "Did you hear about that carman getting into trouble just now?"—I said, "Who is that?"—they said, "The man that had the case fall off his van to-night"—I did not go to the Police-court—the road from the refrigerator to the office was not in a very slushy condition; I cannot swear it, but it was very hard indeed, I had a job to get along with my horses; it was a hard frosty road—it is not very often I am down there; I go through there about once a week—I have not had any conversation with the prisoner about this case.
NOT GUILTY .
Before Mr. Justice Charles.
MESSRS. HORACE AVORY and MUIR Prosecuted.
FREDERICK JOHN NISBIT . On December 26th I was house surgeon a Guy's Hospital—Mrs. Clark was brought there between 9 and 10 that night—she was under the influence of drink—she had a large cut on the right side of the neck, about four or five inches long; it had cut through the vessels of the neck, and four or five muscular branches of the artery were bleeding and exposing the jugular vein; she had lost a great deal of blood—this knife (produced) is the sort of knife that would have inflicted the wound—I thought it had been done from behind; if done in front, most probably it would have been done left-handed, and then I think the jugular vein would have been divided—we had to tie some of the arteries, and stitch the wound up—she was about a month in the hospital—she was very weak from loss of blood—it was a deep wound, but as it was it had not done any serious damage.
EMMA CLARK . I am a widow, and live at 4, Turner's Retreat, Bermondsey—I have children living with me, one named James—I have known the prisoner three months; it may have been a little more—on Boxing Day I was out drinking with him—I went home about 7 o'clock with Mrs. Kirby, leaving the prisoner outside the Cow public-house—we went upstairs, and about 9 I went down and found the prisoner there asleep—I woke him up and asked if he would have a bit of supper before he went home—he made no answer—I went to the cupboard and got a knife to cut a piece of meat on the table—he took the knife into his hand and made some remark about my being out—I gave him a saucy answer, and he made a hit at me with the knife in his hand—I put up my shoulder, and as I shoved the knife I felt it get in my throat—he was sitting in a chair at the time; he got off the chair and made the hit; he was behind me—I called up to Mrs. Kirby, and she came down, and I went to the hospital with her—I was there three weeks—I left the prisoner in the room; he was very drunk—I had been in the Cow with him that evening; there was no wrangling there, only the drop of drink made him disagreeable; nothing out of the way—we were disagreeable with each other.
Cross-examined by the Prisoner. I don't think you had any intent to harm me.
MARGARET KIRBY . I am the wife of James Kirby, a labourer, of 17, Marigold Court, Bermondsey—on Boxing Day I was out with Mrs. Kirby and the prisoner—we were in the Cow public-house at three in the afternoon—they had a few cross words—we had had a good drop to drink, all three of us—about seven we left the prisoner, and I went home with Mrs. Clark—about nine Mrs. Clark went downstairs; I heard her call to me that her throat was cut—I went down and took her to the hospital—she bled a lot.
JAMES CLARK . I am the son of Mrs. Clark, and live with her—on Boxing Night, about a quarter past ten, I saw the prisoner in the Grange public-house—I asked him where my mother was—he said he did not know—he afterwards said, "Jimmy, my son, I cut her throat; how I done it I don't know, or what made me do it"—he was drunk—he told me she had gone to the hospital—I went there and saw her—I then went home with Smith, and saw him find this knife just behind the cupboard door in the kitchen, lying on the floor; there was blood on it.
WILLIAM BRADFORD (Police Sergeant M). On 27th December, about 5 a.m., I went with Inspector Moss to the prisoner's house at Deptford—I knocked at the door; we found it open, and went in—the prisoner pushed up the first floor window, and "asked, "Who's there?"—I said, "We want to speak to you"—I heard a female say, "What is the matter?"—the prisoner said, "I know what they want; I have cut Mrs. Clark's throat"—he then pushed the window down, and we went upstairs—I said to him, "You will be charged with cutting Mrs. dark's throat"—I said, "I saw her son last night, and he tells me you admitted to him you had cut his mother's throat"—he said, "Yes, it's quite true; I did it with one of her black-handled knives "—I told him I had the knife at the station—I took him there and showed him the knife, and he said, "Yes, that is the knife"—he said he intended to give himself up at Stone's End Station last night, but he had been advised not to do so—he appeared to be recovering from the effects of drink.
Prisoner's Defence. I had been drinking; there was no ill-feeling between me and Mrs. Clark—I never had cause to hit her with a knife unless it was being in drink; I had been drinking very heavily for about two months.
GUILTY of unlawfully wounding. — One Month's Hard Labour.
MESSRS. FORREST FULTON and HORACE AVORY Prosecuted, and MR. TICKELL Defended.
The prisoner was a nurse, and had been attending a woman who was suffering from puerperal fever, and while, subsequently attending the deceased it was alleged that she had carelessly been the means of communicating that disease, from which death resulted. After hearing several witnesses, the JURY expressed an opinion that they could not convict, and found the prisoner
NOT GUILTY .
Before Mr. Recorder.
MR. ST. AUBYN Prosecuted.
JAMES CHARLES KEARNEY . I am porter to Charles Lynes, a tailor, of 192, Westminster Bridge Road—on the evening of 8th January I locked up at five o'clock and put the shutters up—I returned at half-past eleven, and saw that there had been an attempt to break in at the back window—I saw some little square. marks all down the window—it was seven feet from the ground—I live there, and an old lady and her husband live at the top of the house.
ALFRED NICHOLS (Detective L). On the night of 8th January I was on duty in Westminster Bridge Road with Detectives Walsh and Cox—about twenty minutes past six I saw a crowd outside Gatti's Music Hall, and noticed the prisoners among the crowd—I watched them—after the crowd dispersed they went towards the railway arch in Westminster Bridge Road, where we lost sight of them for a few minutes—I afterwards saw. Carney and Redman standing on the window-sill of Mr. Lynes' premises, about seven feet from the ground; they were supporting Taylor, who was on the top of a plank, evidently trying to force the sashes of the first floor back window—on catching sight of us one of the prisoners said, "Look out, slits!"—that is a byword among thieves for detectives—on that Taylor slid down the plank and threw something away in the snow—he became violent and endeavoured to throw me; I said if he was not quiet I would knock him down—we then took them to the station and returned to the premises—on searching the back yard I found this jemmy among the snow, and on the windowsill I found a piece of candle and a box of matches—I examined the window in company with Inspector Martin, and found six marks, apparently as from a jemmy—the inspector compared the marks with the jemmy, and they exactly fitted—the other two prisoners were taken by the other officers—they were all charged at the station—they made no
JAMES WALSH (Detective). I was with Nichols on this night—I have heard his evidence, it is quite correct—I took Redman; he attempted to get away; I took hold of his collar—he said, "If you don't strangle me I will go quietly. "
The prisoners in their defence denied the charge.
GUILTY . Previous convictions were proved against the prisoners.
CARNEY and REDMAN— Fifteen Months' Hard Labour.
TAYLOR— Twelve Months Hard Labour.
Before Mr. Common Serjeant
MR. BROMBY Prosecuted, and MR. GEOGHEGAN Defended.
Cross-examined. The bow has been broken, and a new one put—it was at 8.50 p.m.
PHILIP MARCUS . I am a tailor, of the Old Kent Road—on Wednesday, December 9th, the prisoner, whom I knew, came and ordered a coat—he said he had a gold watch which he had taken in change, and should I like to buy it?—I said, "I do not mind if you will let me tee it"—he brought it the next day, and I took it to a watchmaker, who valued it at from £5 to £6—the prisoner asked £6 15s. for it—I said I would allow him £6 10s. for it—he said he got it in exchange for a pony and cart and harness—I kept it till the detective came and asked for it.
Cross-examined. I had known him four or five months, and had made clothes for him before—he did not say where the deal was—he was locked up before the clothes were ready.
ALFRED BOLTON (Detective M). I took the prisoner on the 8th December in Old Kent Road, and said, "I am going to take you in custody for stealing and receiving a gold watch"—he said, "Do you mean that one I sold to Marcus?"—I said, "Yes"—I took him to the station, where he said, "I got it in exchange for a pony, cart, and harness and £4 10s., at the Elephant and Castle, from a man named Johnson or Thompson last Thursday week"—I took him to Camberwell Police-station—on the 28th January I went to Westminster Police-court and identified the prisoner as George Allen, who had absconded from his bail—he said he did not know the man from whom he got the watch, but he thought he could find him at the Cattle Market—I went there with him, but we did not find him—the prisoner was brought up at the Policecourt on the 9th December, and bailed, and the hearing adjourned to the 16th, when he did not appear; but a solicitor appeared for him, and the hearing was adjourned to the 23rd, and the bail estreated—I was present at the sale—the prisoner was not there; it was where he used to have his horses and traps, a turning out of the Old Kent Road-other people's horses and traps were in the room, but they were not sold—there was a catalogue, a bill—I saw his wife in an adjoining public-house, she was not at the sale—horses and traps were in the sale—I next saw the prisoner on January 28th at Westminster Police-court—when I took him he told me I should find the receipt at his house, but his wife brought it to the station—this is it—it is dated 26th October—that was Sunday.
Cross-examined. A market goes on in Walworth Road from eight till ten on Sundays, but it is for oranges, not for horses and carts—the Repository by the Elephant and Castle is not open on Sunday—I have never seen a deal take place outside on Sunday, nor outside Aldridge's—the bill has not been altered since I received it. (MR. BROMBY stated that he had written "Sunday" upon it)—that was on it when I received it—
the prisoner was admitted to bail to enable him to find Thompson—he could not tell me what sort of man Thompson was.
NOT GUILTY .
MR. LEONARD Prosecuted, and Mr. WARBURTON Defended.
LOUIS VEDY (Police Inspector). I was present at Woolwich Police-court when Kluth was before the Magistrate—the prisoner objected, through his solicitor, to be tried summarily, and elected to go to trial—he was not represented on the first occasion, when formal evidence was taken, and he was remanded—the prisoner was charged with being drunk and disorderly—he was afterwards identified and charged with intimidation—when he appeared before the Magistrate the charge of intimidation was mentioned, and the prisoner was remanded in order that when evidence was given he should be properly represented; and, by the advice of Mr. Sharman, his solicitor, he elected to go to trial.
WILLIAM PHILLIPS . I am a labourer, of 8, Morley's Road, Kent—on 4th January I was employed by the Shipping Federation—I was one of the non-Union men boarded and lodged on the Scotland, and employed in the Albert Docks—I was going to my work about eleven p.m.—I was in Stanley Road, North Woolwich—I saw the prisoner and seven or eight others—the prisoner said, "Where are you going?"—I said, "To my work on board the Scotland "—he said, "Have you got any money?"—I said I had got thirteen shillings—another man, Hart, and the prisoner said, "Give it to us and we will let you go"—I had three shillings in my pocket, and a half-sovereign in my hand—they were close on each side of me—they held me—I struggled and got across to a lamp—Kluth kept pushing me about—a little fellow not in custody took my half-sovereign out of my hand—Kluth struck me with a stick at the back of the neck; I fell, and Hart kicked me hard, in the right side; Kluth kicked me on my side, back, and shin—I cannot remember much till I was in the watchman's house—I next saw Kluth at North Woolwich Police-station—I said he was one of the men—I told the constable—I suffered from my right leg most, I could not go to work for a week—I was at the hospital—I saw a doctor.
Cross-examined. I do not know the neighbourhood—it is near the Free Ferry—the night was dark—I charged Hart—I know Hart was there—I identified Hart from twelve others—I said at the Police-court that Hart asked me if I had any money, and gave more detailed evidence—I was sure it was Hart as much as Kluth—the Magistrate dismissed Hart, but that was over another job; it was all through another man that Hart got dismissed—the case was gone into against Hart—the Magistrate said there was not sufficient evidence against Hart; although I swore to his identity and to things Hart had done—I went for a policeman to go on board the Scotland when I saw Kluth—ho was in custody for being drunk—I said he had a longish brown overcoat on, and a red and black scarf, and a cap with flaps over the ears—I was very much frightened—I was taken to the station by a policeman to see whether I knew anybody—I remember Hapton asking them to save me—Hapton kept me there all
Re-examined. I was clear-headed before I was knocked down, and had
perfect possession of my senses—Hart was discharged by the Magistrate who committed Kluth.
WILLIAM HAPTON . I live at Silvertown—I am a watchman employed by Messrs. Fowler, Waring, and Co—the office I watch is at the corner of Stanley Road—about 11.5 p.m. on 4th January I was sitting in my office; I heard a disturbance; I came to the gate; I saw Phillips followed at great speed by twelve or fifteen men; he turned down Henley Lane, and then back and into my gate—I let him in and shut my gate—he remained all night—he showed me where he was kicked.
WILLIAM VANCE , M. D. I live at North Woolwich—about 5 a.m. on 5th January two policemen brought Phillips to my surgery—he was scarcely able to stand—his principal contusion was on the right leg—I could find nothing of a serious character—he had a slight contused wound on the left leg—I ordered an ambulance, and sent him to the hospital—he also suffered from contusions down the spine, on the right side of the head, and at the back—I dressed his right leg before I sent him to the hospital—his injuries were produced by kicks or blows.
JOHN DAY . I am a labourer, of 84, Watergate Street, Deptford—on Sunday, 4th January, about 10.40 p.m., I was crossing the Free Ferry from North to South Woolwich—I saw the prisoner on the pier—Phillips was with me and Lee—we were going to work at the Albert Dock—we landed and walked down the street—two men took hold of Phillips, and took him round the corner—I was knocked down and lost my senses—I got kicked by the side of the ear—I am employed by the Federation—I saw Kluth coming towards me as I got up.
Cross-examined. Kluth was a stranger—the night was dark—there was no moon.
Re-examined. There are half a dozen lamps.
Cross-examined. Phillips identified Hart, but not in my presence—Hart was discharged—he was tried with Kluth—I do not know anything of Kluth—Kluth was locked up for being drunk—he gave a right address, 20, Queen's Road, Tidal Basin, more than a mile and a half from the Ferry.
The prisoner's statement before the Magistrate: " I do not know the man, he has made a mistake."
Witnesses for the Defence.
THOMAS MCCARTHY . I am a labourer, of 20, Queen's Road, Tidal Basin—Kluth lodges in the same house—on Sunday, 4th January, he came in between 10.40 and 10.45 p.m.—I know that by the rubbing of his feet on the door-mat very heavily, and his shutting and bolting the door and going upstairs—the only persons living upstairs besides him are his Wife and stepson—4t is more like a scrub on the door-mat—his stepson is a lad of twenty—Stanley Road is two or three miles from the Free Ferry-lam a native of Dock Street, Poplar.
Cross-examined. I was in bed smoking my pipe; I had been there since ten—I had a paraffin light—my wife was up in the back room—Kluth did not speak—I had not seen him since three or four p.m.—I did not hear the step-son move about—Mrs. Kluth was in and out all day for errands—a widow occupies the lower part—she serves at a
lodging-house—she did not come home—when late beds are made up she does not come home—I did not come out of my bedroom after six o'clock—I am a dock labourer—I am a Unionist, but one is not required now to show his ticket—I knocked off work at four p.m. on Saturday—I went to work at eight the following Monday.
JOHN TRAVERS . I live at 20, Queen's Road—I am Kluth's step-son—my age is twenty—I saw Kluth out at 7.30; I left him at 8.30 at the Tidal Basin—I next saw him between 10.30 and 11 p.m. indoors—I was in bed—I saw him in the kitchen—I sleep in the back room—I was called up to see who had come in—my mother called me—I spoke to him—he had a reefer coat on, and a round hat—McCarthy is wearing the coat; it is my father's coat, he lends it to McCarthy—Kluth's hat has no flaps—I never saw him wear one yet; I should see it if he did—he wears a round hat and a peak cap—our house is about two miles from the Free Ferry.
Cross-examined. McCarthy is not Kluth's friend—Kluth lends his coat because McCarthy has not got one—mother was in bed in the front room—I came in at 9.55—I went to bed just after ten—I don't let Kluth in—there is a string in the door, and the boys pull it—I went to see who was coming in—the widow was out—there are two kitchens—there are three rooms—McCarthy lives downstairs in the back room—the string is the only fastening to the door—my father went straight upstairs to our kitchen—I saw him there—I said, "Who's that?"—he said, "That's me, Joe"—he went to his bedroom—I went to mine—I told you at the Police-court I sat up twenty minutes with my father—I did sit up twenty minutes, I pulled his boots off—I know the hour by going to bed—I guessed we sat up twenty minutes—I looked at the clock when I went to bed, and it was 10.5—he was in before eleven—I looked at the clock just as we were going to bed—it was 11.5—the clock was on the mantelpiece in the kitchen.
FRANCES McCARTHY . I am the wife of Thomas McCarthy—I am hard of hearing—Kluth came in on 4th January about 10.30 or 11 p.m., shut the door, and wiped his feet on the mat—by the way he wipes his feet I could swear to him.
Cross-examined. I did not see him—I heard his footsteps—I did not hear him speak.
GUILTY .— Four Months' Hard Labour on the whole indictment
NOT GUILTY .
MR. FOSTER Prosecuted.
GUILTY .— Eight strokes with a birch-rod.
Eight Months' Hard Labour.
ADJOURNED TO MONDAY, MARCH 9TH, 1891.