18th March 1907
Reference Numbert19070318-30
VerdictGuilty > with recommendation

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SAVORY, Arthur ; stealing 43 cocoanuts and other goods of R. S. Murray and Co., Limited, and feloniously receiving same.

Mr. Leycester prosecuted; Mr. Hardy defended.

MATTHEW WASHINGTON , foreman to C. Webster and Co., contractors, 65, Ewer Street, Blackfriars. Prisoner has been in our service a number of years and up to his arrest. We have a contract with R. S. Murray and Co., and prisoner was employed in carting for them for two years.

Cross-examined. He was in our firm for 18 years as carman and horse-keeper, and gave perfect satisfaction. He has borne a good character.

Police-constable ERNEST BERRIDGE, 596 W. On the evening of February 26 I went to 22, Defoe Road, where prisoner lives, at 1.45, and saw him standing at the back of the van, which contained two sacks of provender, one sack of sugar, one sack of maize, and 43 cocoanuts. I asked him what he had in the van, and he replied, "I have got some corn. "When I found the property I asked him where he had got it, and the said, "I decline to say. "I took him to the police station, and he declined to give any information. On the next day he was taken before the magistrate, and he said, "I stole the things. I am very sorry I stole the things. "

Cross-examined. He might have had some drink. My information was that he had stolen property. His brother-in-law said; "I want you to take the man into custody. "If he had given me any information as to where he got the goods I should not have taken him into custody. When the charge was read over to him he volunteered the statement I have mentioned. From the time he was taken into custody till he was charged at the police station I have not put any question to him as to where he got the things from.

Detective HENRY GODDARD, W Division. I was present when prisoner was brought before the magistrate, and when he was asked if he had anything to say he said, "I stole them myself. "After his remand I saw him in the passage of the police court, and he made a statement to me, which I did not invite him to make. I had spoken to him before he was taken before the magistrate and asked him who his employer was and the manager's name. All the questions I put to him were with reference to the charge. An hour intervened between the time I have mentioned and the statement he made to me in the police court passage, and in the meantime he had been before the court. He was not cautioned, as I did not know he was going to speak to me. He spoke to me as he passed me in the passage leading to the cells while the gaoler was conducting him. He said, "The provender and the maize I stole from Webster's yard; the cocoanuts I stole; the sugar I never saw till the constable called my attention to

it in the van. "At 5.15 I went to 22, Defoe Road and saw a van standing outside, and I saw a man put two cases up. They came from 22, Defoe Road. I found there were a number of cases of chocolates and a number of small boxes. I found some of them had the name of Murray on. I spoke to Taylor, who was the man I saw putting the cases in the van, and to Mrs. Goldsmith. I took the contents of the van to the police station. There were 22 4 lb. boxes of different kinds of sweets bearing the name of Murray (boxes produced), 13 7 lb. boxes with Murray's name, eight open cases of chocolates, caramels, and 'Varsity mixture, and one bag containing 50 lb. of sugar. I went back to 22, Defoe Road, at 9 p.m. Taylor still had in his possession one case of Yankeedoodle caramels, which were identified as Murray's, and I took it to the police station. It was not there in the afternoon.

Cross-examined. I was the officer in charge. Prisoner made the remark to which I have alluded when the assistant-gaoler opened the door leading to the cells and called out "Remanded." I did not take down the statement in writing, but I have a good memory. The warder was not present. At 5.15 on the day in question I saw the van outside the house and examined some of the cocoanuts. I saw a man put a case into the back of the van. I waited and saw him bring another case out. I stood 50 yards from the van. I saw two cases put into the van, and there were eight in the van altogether. For aught I know the other six might have been in the van when it drove up. Those that I saw put in were tied up in sacks; 22 of the small boxes were complete, and Murray's name was stamped on every one, and anyone dealing with the sweets would see Murray's name on them. The ticket contains the packer's name. The caramel sweets have not the name of Murray on them nor the 'Varsity mixture. I had not a search warrant. I found them in the street. I was in plain clothes. In the afternoon I did not go into the house because I did not want to lose sight of the van. If I had had someone with me I should have gone into the house. I did not want to cause a commotion by blowing a whistle. Although I was 50 yards off I could identify the two cases that came out of the house.

H. JOHN LAWTON , manager to R. 8. Murray and Co., 67, Turnmill Street. Prisoner was in the habit of coming to our premises every day. His work was to take out deliveries on some days and haul from the wharves and docks. He would bring raw material to our place, including cocoanuts and sugar. He would deliver manufactured sweets and collect the money. He had no authority to purchase goods, as we have a rule that no servant should purchase from the firm. At one time he did purchase from the firm, but that was stopped in January, 1906. After he was in custody I saw the goods seized by the police—among others the cocoanuts. On February 25 we had a delivery of cocoanuts, but prisoner was not engaged in cartin them. I can identify the sweets. There were some in boxes with our name on. The value of them was £35—our selling price. The

retail selling price would be 25 per cent, above that. Some were 2 ozfor a penny. The total weight was 12 1/2 cwt.

To the Court. It would not be possible for a man to escape detection if he took this quantity all at once, but if he took it from six or seven deliveries he might, because we (have 600 bands and we carry from 40 to 50 tons.

Cross-examined. I was manager in 1905. Prisoner did buy some goods from us. Invoices produced have the name of Savory and mage from April 20 to December 13, and the total amount is £3 4s. Then Mr. Murray refused to sell to him on the ground that he was a carman. He thought it was not the right kind of thing for a carman to be buying his goods. The invoices produced range from May 25 and they are debited to the Meymoud Company.

WILLIAM RAYNER , secretary to R. S. Murray and Co. The two accounts produced are copies of our books showing goods supplied to the Meymoud Company.

Cross-examined. I find that goods were supplied to prisoner. I bow the customers of the firm. (A list of same of the customers to whom goods were sold was handed to witness, and it was arranged that he should take it to the office of the company and check it by their books.)

Mrs. HIBBERD. I aim an ironer. Up to the end of February I was living at 22, Defoe Road, where prisoner lived with Mrs. Goldsmith. I was charwoman there and was paid 3s. a week by prisoner. Sometimes Mrs. Goldsmith would take the van out. I heard prisoner tell her to meet him at Bleckfriars in the evening. This happened sometimes once and sometimes twice a week. I sometimes saw the van come home about nine o'clock and I saw what was taken out. It was a sack with a few boxes of sweets in it with the name of Murray. There used to be a few brought home each time—about half a dozen. The last time was eight days before he was arrested. I could not sty what came; I was in bed at the time, but in the morning I saw two cases. I did not see what was in them. Some of the things were kept in the back bedroom in the original boxes. They were only taken out on Friday night. Mrs. Goldsmith kept a stall at Brixton, which was opened on Friday and Saturday nights. On the evening before the sweets used to be taken out of the boxes and put into small bags. I have been to the stall myself. Mrs. Goldsmith owned it. She sold at 3 oz. for a penny, or 4 oz. of nut rock. I have seen some of the boxes at the courthouse and I recognise some of them as being those that Game in. I remember the day on which prisoner was arrested. Mrs. Goldsmith went to the police court, but I did not go. When prisoner was arrested I took the sweets out of the boxes; in that I was helped by Jessie and Willie and the boxes were burned.

Cross-examined. Detective Goddard came to see me last Thursday and took my statement, which I signed the next day at the solicitor's. I was living at 22, Defoe Road with prisoner's father and received an

allowance of 3s. a week; his father receives 10s. a week. Prisoner is not living with his wife. I saw her on Boxing Day. I know that Mrs. Goldsmith does have a stall, and I have been there when she was getting up the stall. On Friday and Saturday nights the stall is held; there is not much doing the other days. Mrs. Goldsmith told me to burn the boxes to which I have alluded. I deny that I was drunk upstairs. There is a bad feeling between prisoner and his wife's relations, but I do not suggest that they would like to do prisoner a bad turn. I saw the boxes arrive, but I had no suspicion that they were come by dishonestly. They were dealt with in an open way, but I used to think it was strange that they should come in at the time they did.

WILLIAM RAYNER , recalled. I find on examining the books that the following people and firms were customers of ours: Bond, Harper, Jackson, Skyer, Avard, Austin, Simmons, Stevens, Small, Page. Croydon Goodie Shop, Petty, Arthur, Hudson, Rogers, Allen, Nixon, Harrison. They are all small c. o. d. customers, generally 2 oz. and penny lines. The accounts vary from 9s. 11d. to £2 or £3.


ARTHUR SAVORY (prisoner, on oath). I lived at 22, Defoe Road, and before this charge was made there was no suggestion of any kind against me. I have been employed by Webster and Co. for 18 years, and from April 20 to December 13 I bought goods from Murray and Co I have the invoices for these purchases. Then Mr. Murray objected to serve me. I was going out with a stall then on Saturday evenings along with a friend in the confectionery trade. I used to buy from the Meymoud Confectionery Company toffee, nut rock, stick-jaw, and candy. Murray's sold them the stuff, and the invoices produced are made out to those people. I used to buy of them. When they, gave the traveller the order he knew that I had them. The last invoice to the Meymoud Company was September 12. They got into bad straits and wanted to get out of it, and from that time I was unable to get goods from them. I used to report myself at nine o'clock to Murray's and wait two or three hours, and by two o'clock the goods would be handed to Mr. Phillips or Wilmore were with me when I delivered the goods. Sometimes a customer did not require all the goods I took to him, and if he sent two back I would have them with the discount. I paid for those two. I have broken bulk to Bond, Harper, Skyer, of Hoxton; Austin, of Stroud Green Road; Simmons, Stevens, of Hoxton Road; and Page. We had 400 customers on the round, and I have broken bulk and kept a lot of their goods. I admit that when I was brought before the magistrate I said that I stole them myself, but the night before I was intoxicated, and a fellow-prisoner at the police-station to whom I applied for advice told me that if I would plead guilty I should get off with a fine of 10s. I deny that I made the statement to Detective Goddard which he says I did. When the Meymoud Confectionery Company

failed I bought their stock for £30, and at the same time my sister died, and I bought the stock of her shop in Green Lanes. I have a list of the stock I bought from the Meymoud Company. I bought cocoauuts and kernels from Phillips, as appears from the bill now produced.

Cross-examined. I was drunk when I was arrested, and was hardly sober when brough before the magistrate; I was slightly inebriated. I pleaded guilty because I thought of getting out of the trouble quickly. I will swear I did not say to Goddard, "I stole the provender and maize from Webster's yard. "I do not even recollect speaking to him. I should recollect it if I had said it. I started the stall about two months after I started at Murray's a couple of years ago. In January Mr. Murray refused to supply me with sweets, but I still continued to get them from him, only under another name, the Meymoud Confectionery Company, and when they failed in August I broke bulk. I knew it was against the rules, but it was not dishonest. I have always been in the habit of getting a living, and Murray's are not the only manufacturers.

A. PHILLIPS, 22, Murphy Street, Lambeth. I was employed by R 8. Webster and Co. as vanboy between a year and six months. I drove with prisoner to Messrs. Murray's and loaded up. I never saw (prisoner steal oases at Murray's premises. Sometimes when we went to a customer prisoner would take a dozen, boxes into the shop and bring half a dozen out and say," He does not want more, we can put them up in front. "This occurred with Austin (122, Stroud Green Road), with Bond on several occasions, with Jackson, Skyer, Stevens, and Award.

Cross-examined. I was discharged by Webster's for insolence and carelessness. We used to take goods back from customers five or six times a week—four or five a week of caramels and the other time 'Varsity mixture. I know the boxes of Yankeedoodle mixture weighing 1 1/4; cwt. I remember Lawrence (of Church Street, Croydon) returning some two or three months ago. We only went there twice, When we got to the shop I remained with the van; I did not hear what took place in the shop.

FREDERICK WILMORE . I was employed by R. S. Webster and Co. as vanboy for 18 months. I drove with prisoner to Murray's and remained with him till he received his load, and I never saw him steal anything there. When we arrived at the various customers I regained with the van, and sometimes prisoner would bring back some cases. I remember Avard, of High Street, Walworth; Simmons, Hodson, of Mitcham Road.

Cross-examined. I left Webster's in November. I was not discharged. I left to better myself. I have been with other carmen, but they did not break bulk; if the customer did not want the goods they took them back to the firm. Prisoner took the goods to his place in Tooting. We would go there with Webster's van when we were round that way.

Mrs. GOLDSMITH, 22, Defoe Road. Before I lived with prisoner I kept a general shop; I sold all kinds of sweets and tobacco. Then I sold my business, but continued to carry on trade as a sweetstuff maker. I gave prisoner money to pay for some of Murray's sweets. When I went to the stall I did not take the sweets in the original boxes; I used to throw them out loosely. I used to empty them out into cases so as to mix them. It is not the fact that I asked Mrs. Hibberd to burn some boxes. I made no attempt to destroy boxes, nor did prisoner ask me to do so.

Cross-examined. The stall belonged to me; I only had it open once a week in Atlantic Road. I used to sell chocolates at 2 oz. for 1 1/2 d., the rest at 3 oz. a penny, and some 4 oz. a penny. I did not tell prisoner what I wanted; he brought what he pleased. I expected he would get them wholesale. When Mr. Murray refused to serve prisoner, then he went to the Meymoud Company; I knew he got the goods by breaking bulk. If any customer only wanted a few they brought me the rest. I know Mrs. Hibberd, but we were not on good terms; she was always the worse for liquor. I remember the police coming the day alter prisoner was arrested and finding some things in the van. That is what I always did; I took them to the stall loosely. It is not true, as stated by Mrs. Hibberd, that she and the two children sat up all night. The girl got up and asked what was the matter, (and I said, "Jessie, your father has been taken to prison." I did not burn the boxes.

(Friday, March 22.)

Verdict, Guilty, the jury desiring the court to pass as lenient a sentence as possible on the ground of the prisoner's former good character.

Sentence, Nine months' imprisonment in the second division.


(Friday, March 22.)

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