20th August 1838
Reference Numbert18380820-1855
VerdictGuilty > unknown

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1855. JOHN SHEPPARD was indicted for stealing, on the 2nd of August, 2 1/2 lbs. weight of tea, value 10s., the goods of the East and West India Dock Company, his masters.

MR. PAYNE conducted the Prosecution.

ALEXANDER LUKE . I am a Thames police-constable, stationed at the East and West India Docks. On the 2nd of August I saw the prisoner coming out of the Import-Dock—I saw his neck handkerchief was large—I took him into the office—he took it off, and in it was a quantity of tea—I took his hat off, and found it very heavy—I took out the lining, and found a quantity of tea between the two crowns—I then desired him to take off his boots, and found a quantity of tea there—there was 2 1/2 lbs. in all—I asked where he. got it—he said from a ship, the Duke of Sussex—I went on board the ship the next morning with Mr. Cater, and he pointed out a chest of tea, with a hole in one corner, large enough to admit a hand—I should think 3 or 4 lbs. had been taken from it—there was a sample taken from it, and I have the tea that was taken from the prisoner—the prisoner was employed by the Dock Company—the largest quantity of tea was found in his hat.

EDWARD CATER . I am foreman ship-worker in the East and West India Docks. The prisoner was at work under me, on board the Duke of Sussex—he was to break out the chests, and sling them, or any thing else—I found a chest had been broken in the stowage—I took a sample out of it, and have compared it with what was taken from the prisoner-to the best of my judgment it corresponds with this tea—it was in the custody of the Dock Company.

Prisoner. The hat was not my own, but I put it on my head, and did not know what was in it.

GUILTY . Aged 22.— Transported for Seven Years.

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