27th February 1843
Reference Numbert18430227-873
VerdictNot Guilty > unknown

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873. FRANCIS GIZZARD was indicted for feloniously and knowingly uttering, on the 18th of Feb., a forged order for the payment of 41l., with intent to defraud Martha Capel.

MARTHA CAPEL . I am a widow, and keep a lodging-house in Fox's-lane, Shadwell—the prisoner came to lodge at my house, and remained about a month—he said he had got a berth, on board the ship Euphrates, and on the 18th of Feb. he produced a paper, which he said was a letter of advance, for 4l.—I cashed it for him—he offered me 14s. to board him from Saturday morning till Monday morning, and 5s. for cashing it—I paid him 17s. on account, believing it was a good order—he was anxious to have more, but I had not got it—he paid me for his lodging weekly. (The order being read, purposed to be an advance note of the ship Euphrates, hound to Bombay and China, signed, "John Robinson, Commander.")

SAMUEL DUDLEY . I am a shoemaker, and lodge with the prosecutrix, who is my sister—the prisoner lodged at her house—he told me on the Friday that he had got a ship, and was going to Bombay and China—he called it the Euphrates—my sister showed me this note on Satuiday night, the 18th, and on the Sunday I met the carpenter of the Euphrates, and mentioned it to him—the prisoner had told me that he had left his advance note with my sister, and he asked her for 18d. more in my presence—she did not give it to him—he came home tipsy—I questioned him next day about the ship, as I learnt it was not a genuine note—I saw him on Monday, and told him the ship was not going to Bombay as he represented—he said it was, and that she laid against the jetty, in the London Docks.

GEORGE SMITH (police-constable K 38.) I went with Dudley to Fox's-lane, Shadwell, and took the prisoner into custody, with the note—in going along he said he would give Capel the 17s. when he got a ship if she would let him go.

JOHN HENDERSON . I am clerk to Marshall and Co., ship brokers, in Fen-church-street—they are brokers for the Euphrates, which laid against the jetty, in the London Docks—she was bound for Sidney and New South Wales—John Christmas was the commander—there is no John Robinson authorised to issue advance notes—this note purports to be drawn on us—we should not pay it—nobody had authority to draw it—we do not know John Robinson.

Prisoner's Defence. I met a man last Friday, between eleven and twelve, close to Shadwell church, who asked if I wanted a ship, and said he would ship me immediately if 1 would give him 2s. I said, "Yes;" he produced this note, and said they were made out, he had nothing to do but to put the name in it; I gave him my name and he put it in the note; I asked him about signing the articles; he mentioned the name of the ship, and where it laid; he told me the ship was to sail on Tuesday; he appeared a respectable man; I went to my lodging, told the prosecutrix I had shipped, and gave her the note, intending to go in the ship; I did not know it was a forged note or I would not have given it her.

JOHN HENDERSON re-examined. At the time seamen sign articles there is generally an advance note given—I never knew it to be done until they sign the articles—men go about seeking sailors for vessels, but they have not advance notes—some notes have come to our office of the same kind, wrong notes of ships, which we know nothing about, but they were addressed to Leadenhall-street—I know nothing of the prisoner—there are persons who go about to get hands for ships—a day is appointed for the men to sign articles, they all go down then, and the master takes all he likes, and rejects those be does not like—then they have advance notes—I never knew an instance of a seaman taking a note without going on board to ascertain about the voyage.

Prisoner. The landlady knows I have been to sea; I have been on board a ship which her own son has gone out in; he took me to lodge there; I paid her for my lodging honestly.

MARTHA CAPEL re-examined. He had not left my house when he was taken—it was owing to what my brother learnt that I had him taken up—he paid me regularly for a month 3s. a-week—I know he was at sea before—he had the appearance of a sailor when he came—I do not know what voyage he had been.

GEORGE SMITH re-examined. He told the same story at the station—he did not describe the man he met, or put me in the way to apprehend any one that had imposed on him—he was asked if he should know the man again, and he said he did not think he should, that it was given to him in a hurry, at the corner of Fox-lane.

Prisoner. I have my discharge from my last Captain; the ship is now in the London Docks, it is the Rookers, Captain Barnes; my brother knows the time of my going to sea; I have been at sea for the last fourteen years; on the Monday morning I was accosted in the street by a man in the same way, who asked if I would go to Liverpool; I said no, I had a ship; it is a customary thing in Ratcliff-highway, the Jews have bills in their windows, soliciting men, and by paying 2s. or 3s. they ship you, and give an advance note there.

JOHN HENDERSON re-examined. There is a vessel called the Rookers, and it sails, I think, from Calcutta.

WILLIAM GIZZARD . I am the prisoner's brother—he has been at sea for the last fourteen years—he was on board the Rookers about eleven months and a half, and sailed to Calcutta; he has been to China, America, and a great many voyages.


Before Lord Chief Justice Tindal.

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