16th November 1909
Reference Numbert19091116-83
VerdictsNot Guilty > unknown

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DUNCAN, Woolmer James Victor (38, engineer), ERNST, Louis (37, engineer), and PAMINGTON, Arthur (38, engineer) ; Duncan stealing six cell testers and other articles, the goods of the Foxcroft and Duncan Engineering Company, Limited, his masters, and feloniously receiving the same; Duncan embezzling and stealing the several sums of £10 12s. 4d., £5 15s. 10d., 9s. 6d., £20 9s. 6d., £7 14s. 10d., and £4 19s. 9d., received by him for and on account of the Foxcroft and Duncan Engineering Company, Limited, his masters; Ernst and Pamington stealing six cell testers and other articles, the goods of the Foxcroft and Duncan Engineering Company, Limited, and feloniously receiving the same.

Mr. Muir and Mr. A. de W. Mulligan prosecuted; Mr. Leycester defended Duncan; Mr. Hugo Marshall defended Ernst; Mr. G. St. J. McDonald defended Pamington.

WILLIAM PRESTON CAMPBELL-EVERDEN . I am a director of Kappa, Limited, and also of the Foxcroft and Duncan Engineering Company, Limited. On March 28 prisoner Ernst came to see me. He informed me that prisoner Duncan desired to convert his business into a limited liability company and asked would the Kappa Syndicate undertake it. Terms were discussed and he said he would require for himself one-third of any profit made upon the transaction. A day or two later he brought along Duncan and we had a long interview. In the result it was agreed that the Kappa Syndicate should purchase the business as it then stood as a going concern, so that a limited company might be formed by the Kappa Syndicate, and to that limited company the syndicate would sell all the assets of the business as a going concern in exactly the same form as they purchased it and take their remuneration in shares and debentures. Nothing was said about any commission being payable to Ernst. A draft contract was prepared and submitted to Duncan. He took it away because he said he had to consult his trustees before he signed it. The draft agreement provided that the syndicate was to form a company for the purpose of taking over the business; that the vendor, Duncan, was to sell and the syndicate was to purchase as a going concern and free from encumbrance all the plant, machinery, stock-in-trade, implements and utensils, outstanding credits and accounts, and all other assets of the business: that the consideration was to be £7,000, payable as to £3,000 in fully paid shares in the capital of the intended company and as to £4,000 in fully paid debentures; that the intended company should assume the liabilities of the vendors up to £550. Clause 6 provided that the syndicate was to re-sell the business, stock-in-trade, etc., to the intended company for £13,000 in shares and debentures, and the syndicate was to retain the difference between £13,000 and the £7,000 which Duncan was to get. In clause 7 there was an agreement for further assurance and clause 8 provided that the syndicate should retain possession up to completion and carry on the business in the meantime as a going concern. By clause 11 the vendor was to have the right to be elected a director of the intended company and to be manager, and to devote his whole time to the business for three years. That agreement was executed by both parties under seal. I then procured a company called the "Foxcroft and Duncan Engineering Company" to be formed. I produce the certificate of incorporation dated May 13. Between April 7 and the incorporation of the company Mr. Duncan purported to carry on the business and from time to time remitted certain moneys that he said he had received to the Kappa Syndicate.

On May 14 Mr. Duncan executed an agreement produced with the Foxcroft, Duncan Engineering Company (produced) in the terms of the previous agreement with the Kappa Syndicate. Ernst received shares and debentures for his commission. Duncan was appointed a director and also manager. When Ernst brought the business to us he was merely acting as commission agent and when the preliminary agreement of April 7 was signed he was asked to go down to the works, and look after things on behalf of the syndicate and the company to be formed at a salary of £2 per week. Duncan continued to act as manager until the middle of September, when, in consequence of certain matter which came to our knowledge, he was suspended from his; managership, but not formally displaced as a director. For the purposes of the company it was necessary that a balance-sheet should be prepared, and for that purpose that the stock should be taken and a valuation made of the assets. Duncan and Ernst certified certain stock and plant sheets on August 19, as follows: "We the undersigned hereby certify that we have made an inventory of the furniture, plant, and fittings of the above-named company, and, in our opinion, their value on April 13, 1899, was £1,458 11s. 6d. We hereby certify that the stock-in-trade of the above company as at April 30, 1909, was taken by us or under our supervision, that the value thereof in the stock sheets was at or under cost, depreciation having been allowed for all old or damaged stock, and we certify that to the best of our knowledge and belief the total value is not less than £2,477 10s. 3d., and we further certify that we have made a careful estimate of expenditure oil uncompleted contracts and that, in our opinion, the value of the work completed at April 30, 1909, was £400."

Cross-examined by Mr. Leycester. That was after the company had been carrying on business for three and a half months, during which time goods had been supplied to customers in the proper way, the details being in the invoice book. We were told that accurate stock sheets were in existence, but I never took the trouble to look at them. The accountants said they must have a certificate from the manager as to the amount of stock, but the stock sheets were not checked on our behalf by any independent person before the company was formed. At the time we took over the stock and the plant we had no documents showing what it was we were taking over. We accepted the representations of Duncan and Ernst. At the time Duncan was brought to us by Ernst he was a stranger to us. We had had talks with Ernst about business, but had never done anything. I have had considerable experience in promoting companies. Duncan's solicitor took no part in the promotion of the company. When Duncan first came to us he did not say he was in financial difficulties and was wanting money for the purposes of the business; on the contrary, he said there was a lot of money to come in. What he told us was that he was not able to manage the business as it ought to be managed, and he thought it would be better now he had lost his partner, who had gone out, that other persons should be interested in it. He did not complain when he saw the draft agreement that it contained no provision for finding capital for the working of the business. There was

no arrangement at the first interview that he was to have £2,000 in cash. He asked for some cash; I think it was £1,000. We told him we should not entertain the business on those lines. I did not tell him that he would be able to sell his shares or debentures for cash and that would do instead. There is nothing about Ernst's commission in the agreement. There is nothing in writing to which I can point showing that Duncan knew of Ernst's commission from me at the time the draft agreement was signed, but there is a letter of May 11 which shows that he knew of it. Four thousand of the ordinary shares were to be reserved for the provision of working capital. Of the 7,000 debentures Duncan was to have 4,000 and the Kappa Syndicate and Ernst 3,000. The Kappa Syndicate paid the expenses of registration. Of the 6,000 ordinary shares Duncan was to have half and the Kappa Syndicate and Ernst the other half. We were not liable to find any money; we were not contracting to find any, but intending to find it out of a desire to assist in the development of our joint business. We were not to find the money out of our own pockets, but we had several negotiations to find the money, which would, of course, be repaid out of the sale of the 4,000 shares. I think that is a paragraph in the agreement. Paragraph 14 of the agreement provided that if the company should not be registered within a month from April 7 either party might give to the other seven days' notice in writing sent by registered letter, and then the contract was to be null and void, each party to bear their own expenses. The vendor also covenanted that he would not be concerned or interested in the business of electrical or mechanical engineer or permit his name to be used in that way within 200 miles of London. I maintain that the stock-in-trade ceased to be the property of Duncan on April 7. That is the whole essence of the agreement. It then became the property of the Kappa Syndicate for the purpose of conveying it to the intended company. I am not aware that some of the charges against prisoners were dismissed by the magistrate. The magistrate merely said that with regard to things taken after May 13, in his judgment there should be no question, but there might be a question about the things taken in the interval between April 7 and May 13. The Kappa Syndicate is a limited company. It was formed for a purpose that was not carried out, and ultimately it drifted down to my office at Suffolk House. I was a chartered accountant for many years and ceased to be so on February 13 in consequence of a receiving order made against me. I was adjudicated bankrupt in March, 1907, my liabilities being nominally £17,000 and assets nil. My discharge was suspended for four years. There were 26 bankruptcy petitions against me; they pursued me with great vigour, but 90 per cent, of my creditors were represented by counsel and asked for my immediate discharge as being in their interests. I had no hostile creditor but one for £80. In April, 1903, I formed the Empyrean Trading Corporation, Limited. It was formed for the purpose of carrying on the business of traders' merchants, financiers, capitalists, and general promoters with the nominal capital of £10,000, in £1 shares. Of these 9,993 were allotted to myself and in February, 1904, all these shares except one were transferred to a company called the

London Banking Corporation, Limited. Seven shares had been allotted to the signatories. The office of the Empyrean is at Suffolk House. The Banking Corporation is in New Bridge Street. I am a director of both companies. Mr. Brown, who is one of the secretaries of the Empyrean and is also secretary of the Kappa Syndicate, was appointed secretary of Foxcroft and Duncan, Limited. I think the capital of the Kappa Syndicate is 1,000 shares of 1s. each, of which seven have been issued in the ordinary way to the seven signatories. That does not fairly represent the value of its assets; all this is mud. When the debentures of Foxcroft and Duncan, Limited, were issued the Empyrean was made trustee for the debenture holder and the whole of the debentures are under the control of the Empyrean. Mr. Jenkins was a director of Foxcroft and Co. and also of the Kappa Syndicate. We found out that towards the end of April the bailiffs were in at Duncan's premises for rent, and that there were several judgments against him. It may have been part of his original object in coming to us that money should be found for his liabilities, but he did not so tell us. I did not know that he had certain liabilities which he wanted to get cleared, but had not got the cash to do it with. Duncan told us, I think, that there were about £300 of ordinary trade liabilities and £250 bank overdraft. I think when we found the bailiffs were in we suggested that we would not go on with the business. When he found we were not going to form the company he said he would consult his aunt and get some assistance. She provided £150, which was repaid by giving her £200 worth of the debentures of the company. Part of that money was used to pay the landlord out. During the period from April 7 to the formation of the company on May 13 Duncan was supposed to send every penny of the takings to the bank of the Kappa Syndicate, the London Banking Corporation, Limited. The account in respect of the Foxcroft and Duncan Company was opened on April 7 or 8, immediately the first moneys came in. That arrangement was made when the contract with the Kappa Syndicate was signed. Disbursements were to be paid out of the bank. Wages ought to have been drawn out of the banking account, but there was not enough remitted to make the payment, and so the Kappa Syndicate supplemented what there was with its own moneys and the whole amount was fetched by Mr. Duncan or one of the employés. There were some weeks in which wages were not paid at all. Duncan was frequently summoned by his men. Duncan had not a private dwelling house, but was living with his aunt. The electric power at the works was cut off and a warrant was issued for the electric rate. I do not know that on May 20 the accountant was sent to fetch away the books and that after that time Duncan had to keep his accounts on slips of paper. About the time Duncan was suspended Miss Duncan's solicitor had been writing to the Empyrean about the interest on her debentures, the interest on which was to be payable quarterly. I know nothing of what was found at the works after Duncan was suspended.

Cross-examined by Mr. Marshall. I certainly contend that the property in the goods of Foxcroft-Duncan had passed either to the Kappa Syndicate or to the new company on April 7 and the Kappa

Syndicate in turn transferred them to the company. The effect of the arrangement was that Ernst and the Kappa Syndicate were to take half of Duncan's business. I believe the goodwill was of value and there was besides the plant and considerable stock. We only got paper for it to represent our half; the company got it all; we did not get anything. As to the reason why Duncan should give to the Kappa Syndicate and Ernst half of his valuable business, he should have considered that when he made the bargain. I cannot tell you what was in his mind. I did not go down to the works until after the police court proceedings had started; it was not my duty. Duncan was trusted by us to carry on the buiness as he had done. I understood that Mr. Foxcroft, Duncan's partner, had gone out; I do not know under what circumstances. Mr. Duncan handed us a direction to allot the shares and debentures to himself and his nominees, which was done. The agreement by which Ernst was appointed to act as agent for the Kappa Syndicate at £2 per week was not in writing. He was asked to go down and look after things and promised to do it. The fact that Ernst signed as agent on the two certificates of valuation is, in my opinion, corroborative evidence that he was agent for the Kappa Syndicate to protect the goods of the Kappa Syndicate. If he thought that in August how much more must he have thought it in April. He was there to see that Mr. Duncan did carry on the business as a going concern pending the time when we could register the company and have the whole of the assets conveyed to it. Miss Duncan's money was paid in two cheques of £100 and £50, and every penny of it was applied for the purposes of the business of Foxcroft and Duncan, paying out the brokers' men and paying wages, and that is all duly accounted for. Part of it may have been spent in the formation of the new company, in stamp duties, and so on. At that time I had no interest in the Kappa Syndicate. When I acquired an interest in the Kappa Syndicate and what interest I acquired is a question I will not answer. Mr. Jenkins has not an office at Suffolk Lane, but I believe he sits there. There is no clause in the agreement defining Duncan's duties as manager, except that he was to devote the whole of his time to it for the term of three years.

Re-examined. Miss Duncan was to be repaid out of the first moneys available for the purpose, but it was subsequently agreed that she should take the debentures in satisfaction. No undertaking by the Kappa Syndicate with regard to these agreements remains unfulfilled. The syndicate did not agree to provide any money, but they have, in fact, provided about £475, which has been expended solely for the purposes of the business. The wages were left unpaid because the money did not come in. The cause of my bankruptcy was—well, spite. In the course of my business I received plenty of money from people to be applied for the purpose of advancing whatever business might be moving and I treat them as creditors because I have to give them some return for their money, and as I say by spite a man to whom I owed a very small sum forced me into bankruptcy. No sort of reflection was made upon me in the course of the proceedings. My discharge was suspended for four years because the Registrar said I

had been, indulging in speculation which as a chartered accountant I ought not to have done, and he rather severely penalised me for that. There was no other reason than my bankruptcy for my ceasing to be a chartered accountant; ipso facto, a receiving order takes you off the list of chartered accountants. I was also a member of the Institute of Directors and I think I may say I was highly respected and that helped me in my trouble. I have receipts in my office for over £14,000 and I am paying off my indebtedness almost every day. The Foxcroft Duncan Engineering Company was principally concerned in manufacturing and, of course, selling. Prisoner Duncan would do what buying had to be done. The selling, I suppose, was done by correspondence; there were no travellers. I consider the goods at the works were the property of the company. If he had sold the things prisoners are charged with stealing and receiving the invoices in the ordinary course, of business would have been copied in the invoice book. There are no entries in the books with regard to these particular goods and the things were found on costermongers' barrows. Duncan made out invoices to Ernst for about £60 worth of things and gave them to him as commission.

WILLIAM BURKETT LISLE , electrician, in the employment of the Foxcroft Duncan Engineering Company. I was in Duncan's employment for some four years previously to the turning of this business into a company. On July 15 I received written instructions to make six cell testers, which are used for testing accumulators. Each instrument is identified with a number. The entry in my order book is "Six cell testing volt meters, gravity type, reading 8 to 10 volts. Agent's stock. "I made the instruments, which were finished on July 28, and numbered consecutively 7,038 to 7,043. They are identical. The numbers are at the bottom of the card dial. (Witness identified the instruments produced.) I wrapped the instruments up when I had finished them and took them to Duncan's private office. In the ordinary course instruments would be left in my room where Duncan would look at them and pass them on to the shop. Goods sent out would be entered in the parcels book (produced), which is kept in the office. The clerk makes the entries, or Duncan might; I have on occasion made entries. There is no entry in this book, or in the invoice book, of the six cell testers going out. The next I saw of them after putting them in Duncan's office was at prisoner Pamington's warehouse in Newcastle Row, Clerkenwell. On July 15 I also received an order from Duncan to make up six motor-car volt meters. These were finished on July 29 and numbered 7,532 to 7,537. I packed them and took them to Duncan's office by his instructions. Some weeks later I saw two of them, Nos. 7,534 and 7,537, on Pamington's stall in the Farringdon Road. There is no entry in the parcels book of these instruments going out, or in the invoice book. On July 15 there was a further order to make two ampere meters and a volt meter. The ampere meters were numbered 7,530 and 7,531 and were taken into Duncan's office by his instructions on July 17 and the volt meter on July 21, as appears by the instrument order book. There is no record of the sale or disposal of the articles in the invoice

or parcels book showing how they left the premises. Some weeks afterwards, accompanied by Mr. Chinn, the present manager of the company, I saw one of the ampere meters at Pamington's stall in Farringdon Road. Mrs. Pamington was there and introduced prisoner Pamington as her manager in the name of White. Mr. Chinn asked Pamington where he had bought the articles, and he said at Stephenson's auction, in Covent Garden. The list price of the cell testers is 25s., subject to a discount of 25 per cent, to the trade; that of the volt meters 16s., with a 10 per cent, discount; and of the ampere meters, £2, with 35 per cent, discount. The letter produced addressed to Pamington is in Duncan's handwriting, "Dear Sir,—We find that we have the following ironclad switches in stock for 15 to 25 amps, and 50 amps. We want 3s. each for the 15 to 25 amps, and for the 50 amps. 5s. each. We shall be glad to hear if you can do with these"; signed by Duncan for the Foxcroft Engineering Company, Limited; 18s. is the proper list price for the 15 to 25 amp. switches and 25s. for the 50 ampere switches, with a discount of 25 per cent. A letter in pencil (produced) addressed to Mr. L. Ernst, April 29, 1909, is in Duncan's handwriting. It gives a number of articles forwarded to Ernst by way of commission, amounting to £57 5s. 6d., and there is a further list amounting to £32 12s.

(Wednesday, December 1.)

WILLIAM BURKETT LISLE , further examined. In the list produced yesterday the first item is "One polarised 'Bell' line tester, £3 10s. "

Mr. Leycester objected that this item did not refer to any count in the indictment.

Witness. In the stock sheet the polarised Bell tester is priced at £20. "Bell" is the name of the inventor of the telephone. The instrument is used in connection with the field telephone service and the name "polarized 'Bell' line tester" is the name given to it by the War Office. I saw it upon Pamington's stall. The next item, "One leakage indicator for mine testing work, £3 5s.," was in the testing room as stock on April 28. I have not seen it since. The next item, "One combined galvo (galvonometer) and battery, £1 12s. 6d.," I saw in stock before April 28 and have not seen since. The fourth item, "One portable volt meter, 0 to 150 volts, £2 7s. 6d.," was in stock before April 28 and was found on Pamington's stall. The fifth item, "One ditto ditto moving coil, 0 to 500 volts, £5 10s.," in stock before April 28, was found on Pamington's stall. The sixth item, "One ditto a meter, centre, 0 to 150 volts, £4 17s. 6d.," in stock before April 28, was found on Pamington's stall. The instrument is for measuring amperes. As to item 7, "Two portable gravity volt meters, 150 volts, 50s. each equal £5," in stock before April 28, one was found on Pamington's stall. As to item 8, "Two 3 in. dial brass case volt meters, £3 19s.," in stock before April 28, I have not seen those since, and the same as to item 9, "Two ditto ditto, not complete, 30s. each." As to item 10, "Twenty motor meters at 12s. 6d.," in stock before April 28, I have seen some of them since. Those 20

were out of a batch of 50 sent to Ernst at Camberwell New Road; some have been returned at various dates and made up. They were in stock previously to April 28. I saw two on Pamington's stall that I had previously received to put into working order; 14 were found at his warehouse, unfinished, as they were sent. Item 11, "One double pole circuit breaker, net £7 10s.," in stock previous to April 28, I saw at Pamington's warehouse. The last item, "One single pole ditto, net £5," in stock before April 28, I saw on Pamington's stall. The articles are correctly priced. The second list includes two 6 in. iron case instruments, £3 6s.; two 6 in. brass case instruments, £2 17s. 3d.; nine 3 in. brass case meters, 20s. each, £9; two "Bell" testing volt meters of the gravity type, £2 10s., and 25 2 in. motor meters, 12s. 6d. each, £15 18s. 9d. The 25 motor meters would be part of the 50 that went away on April 28 and were in stock before that date. I have been through the books without discovering entries relating to the articles enumerated. After the batch of 50 2 in. motor meters had been sent away we had several orders for these instruments and as we had none in stock, Mr. Duncan got some back from Mr. Ernst. The first one was returned on May 5. On May 21 one dozen was ordered by United Motor Industries. I asked him about those and he said he would get them; 13 were returned on May 22 and 11 more on May 27. The value of the goods seized at Pamington's stall and warehouse was £70, and the average discount on them would be 25 per cent. I have seen Pamington at the company's works on two occasions since May 14. I can fix the date by the instrument order book, which shows the date when I finished the instruments. The first time would be a day or two either side of June 15 and the second about a week later. On the first occasion he took instruments away on a barrow and on the second occasion a dynamo. I can find no entries of the things he took away in the books. I cannot say whether the books were taken away by the accountant or some other person, so that no entries could be made. My wages were from time to time overdue. I have seen Ernst at the works since the company has been in possession; he was invariably there from May 14 right Up till August. I could not say what he was doing; I never saw him do any work. He would generally be in Duncan's office.

Cross-examined by Mr. Leycester. I am employed in the works and the office does not concern me at all. The only books I had to do with were the instrument order book, and the parcels book occasionally. No particular person kept the parcels book. I imagine the clerk would look after it. Mr. Duncan would make most of the entries in it and when he did not the person responsible for sending out the parcels would make them. In every case the parcel is signed for by the carrier who takes it away. There would be an entry if a parcel was delivered by hand instead of by the carrier. Where a parcel has been taken away by a boy I have seen him given a slip to sign instead of the parcels book. If a customer took away a parcel himself that would not appear in the parcels book. In every case in the book the parcels are entered as taken away by the London Parcels Delivery Company, Carter, Paterson or by one or other of the railway com-panics.

The two lots of goods sent to Ernst were taken by the London Parcels Delivery Company. I was present when they were despatched. I did not see the carman sign for them. Where the word "pass. "occurs the goods have gone by passenger train. The writing in the invoice book is that of Mr. Barber, who left in June. If some of these meters had been brought in to be callibrated and finished, if anything was charged for doing the work, it would appear in the invoice book. The invoice to Pamington is in the name of "White." "Testing and repairing small dynamo, 3s.," is not entered. That was the dynamo he took away about June 15. If he took it away himself he should have signed for it in the parcels book. That was not the occasion when he took away the dynamo in a barrow. I did not see him take away any "scrap." The instruments he took away were good instruments and had only just been made. There were some telephone receivers found at Pamington's. He might have taken those when he took the other things. I priced the receivers at the police court at 5s. I said in cross-examination, "I did nothing to the telephone receivers. They were not scrap; they were stock. If anybody was silly enough they would buy them. There is no sale for them to a sensible person. I saw them put on a barrow. There might have been old metal on the barrow. It might all have been sold as scrap." The polarised "Bell" line tester was in good condition. It was worth more than £1. I do not think the list entry, "Polarised 'Bell' line tester, £20," is intended to represent 20 secondhand instruments. We had no other polarised "Bell." I do not suggest that it was worth £20, and the price of £3 10s. put down for it was a proper price, and that it would be subject to discount. It is not a stock thing; we have no sale for it and it does not appear in any of our catalogues. The other articles sent to Ernst are catalogued. The price of the ironclad switches referred to in Duncan's letter to Pamington would be 13s. 6d. and 18s. 9d., with the discount off. A switch (produced) was found on Pamington's stall. It is not an old pattern and unable to bear a high voltage. It is the only pattern we make and you can break 500 volts with that at a current of 50 amperes. We last sold one like this a few weeks back for the same current. The meters said to have been stolen on July 17 are capable when incomplete of being turned either into volt meters or into ameters. The brass cases are made in the shop and brought into the testing-room, where they are put into stock and when an instrument is ordered it is completed, an inside is put to it, the wire is put on, the pointer adjusted, and the scale made out. The scales upon the one produced is a cardboard scale; we have never had an engraved scale on this type of instrument. In converting volt meter into an ameter a portion of the inside has to be taken away and different wire and terminals substituted; half an hour's work would turn it from one to the other. With regard to the cell testers, all I had to do was to complete them. The cases had been in existence not more than 12 months. The price of the cell testers would be about £7 10s. I do not know that the cell testers were sent to Ernst in exchange for the things he returned. Between June 5 and June 10 a 2 in. motor meter, returned by Ernst,

was completed and supplied to Messrs. Rawlings Brothers, Limited, and also an ameter. That entry appears both in the instrument order book and in the invoice book. On June 19 one 2 in. brass-case motor meter was completed and invoiced to Heap and Johnson, being one of the same lot returned by Ernst. As it was sent by parcel post, that would not appear in the parcels book. We should have a receipt from the post-office if we wanted one. Another meter of the same kind was invoiced to Heap and Johnson on June 25. That one was returned, the reading being too high, and they had a lower reading meter. On June 29 a similar meter was supplied to Rawlings, and on June 30 two more. Messrs. Walker and Hut ton, United Motor Industries, Limited, Messrs. Wright and Sons, Dover, and Mr. Fowler, Windsor, are other customers who were supplied with meters returned from Ernst, and some are still in stock. I have been in the service of the company over five years, and until it was turned into a company I looked upon Duncan as being my master. After the company was formed, he continued to perform the same duties as before, until he was suspended. I took my orders from him and got my wages from him—sometimes. I had a telephone message from Jenkins to take my orders from Duncan. The works were shut up about a fortnight ago. None of the plant of the firm has been taken away. A gas engine was taken away in September, but that was not part of the plant of the firm; it was used when we were in a different place, and has been lying there idle for a year or two. There have also been taken away an alternating current generator, a number of large circuit breakers, a stock of arc lamps and carbons, a number of arc lamp covers, about one dozen instruments, all the old stock of pulleys, telephone magnetos, all on or about September 22. Nothing was taken away that would stop the works. None of the articles enumerated appear in the parcels book, nor, so far as I know, in the copy invoice book.

Cross-examined by Mr. Marshall. I am in what is called the callibrating room. I received all the instruments returned from Ernst to calibrate, but there was other work to be done. Calibrating is marking on the instrument the exact point to which the pointer swings. I had nothing to do with where the instruments came from. There would be a book in the office which would show whether the instruments were handed over by someone from outside the works. We do not receive incomplete machines from other manufacturers. Our machines are made entirely inside our own works. The meaning of the entry, "Agent's stock," is that instruments would be made up and sent to an agent for him to sell. I disagree with your suggestion that the reference to agents' stock means that they did not pass out of our stock into my hands to callibrate. Of the 50 2 in. motor meters that went to Ernst, I think you will find that 25 were returned. If Duncan gave these 50 to Ernst I should not expect Ernst to give them back without something in exchange. I could not say whether it was the 26th or 27th, and not April 28 that the goods were sent to Ernst. It did not come within my duty at the moment to see that the carrier who took the things gave a receipt in the parcels book. The responsible person was a man named Storer. The things were sent

away quite openly. We took our orders from Duncan, and if he had said the goods were to be sent to some other place, they would have been so sent. I did not see Mr. Everden at the works at all. I do not see people who come to the works unless I happen to be in the office. I never saw Ernst do any work, but he used to come into the calibrating room sometimes. I have seen Jenkins at the works three times. I cannot recall anything to show when this new company took possession of the works, but Duncan told me the new company was taking the business over. My wages were not always paid to date; five weeks is unpaid now. I was paid 7d. per hour, or an average of 30s. per week.

Cross-examined by Mr. McDonald. I said in my evidence at the police court, "About June 15 I saw Pamington's assistant take some telephone receivers and six 3 in. brass case roll meters. Duncan told me to wrap them up. They were taken to the shop, and Pamington's assistant took them. I saw the telephone receivers at Pamington's store. "Pamington did not himself take them, but they were taken by his directions. I first knew of the formation of the company some time in May. One week our wages were not forthcoming, and when we asked Mr. Duncan about it he said he would get the money during the week. We waited during the week, but it did not come off, and later on he said there had been some little "fluke" in matters, and the company had not definitely taken the concern over, but we should have our wages on the following Saturday. On the following Saturday they did not come down. A board was put up changing the name from "Foxcroft and Duncan" to "Foxcroft and Duncan Engineering Co., Ltd.," but I could not say the date. One cell tester was found on the stall and six at Pamington's warehouse.

Re-examined. The telephone receivers are what are called spoon receivers: they are not modern. I remember using the expression that people might buy them if they were silly enough. I meant by that that they are rather old-fashioned and could not be used on up-to-date instruments. I am in a position to say that one of the 3 in. brass case ampere metres which has been recovered was never in the possession of Ernst. I keep the incomplete instruments in my own department in a box and, as nobody else goes to it, I know exactly how things always stand. When this one was ordered I took it from the original wrappings in which it came from the shop and made it up. I am able to say that this cell tester never went to Ernst, because I took it from the stock in the shop in its original wrapping and made it up. The same observation applies to the other six. With regard to those which did come back from Ernst I made a rough note in the old instrument book. Thirty-one were returned in all, not 25, though I have no record of six of them. The one dozen motor metres which were sent to the United Motor Industries were completed from those that came back from Ernst. With regard to the plant which was taken away in September, the gas engine and the pulleys, none of it was in use nor had been for years. I do not know what was done with it after it was taken away. The company has agents for the sale of their goods, about half a dozen. None of the things entered as

"agents' stock" went to any of those agents. I should say the board outside the works with the name of the concern on was changed in June.

HENRY ARTHUR CHINN , Southcote Road, South Norwood. I have been the manager of the Foxcroft and Duncan Engineering Company, Limited, since September 9. On September 24, in consequence of information I had received, I went with Lisle to Pamington's stores. Mrs. Pamington was present first of all and Lisle identified certain articles. Pamington subsequently came up and Mrs. Pamington introduced him as her manager and buyer in the name of White, and gave me a card with that name on. I asked Pamington where he had got the articles which Lisle had identified. He said from Stevens in Covent Garden. After that he told me I could know nothing further. I was present when Ernst was arrested by Sergeant Smith at 82, Camber well New Road. Ernst said that these goods were given to him by Duncan, in payment of moneys due to him, and produced an invoice. Ernst was asked if he had had goods since the business was turned into a limited company and said "Yes." He also said he was hard up at the time and was ill. As to the disposition of the goods he said he was walking about the streets and saw Pamington and asked him if he bought this class of goods. Pamington said Yes, and he sold them to Pamington for £4 and some odd shillings. I gave him in charge. I was also present when Sergeant Wright arrested Pamington in his warehouse in Clerkenwell. Sergeant Wright first spoke to him in Farringdon Road at his stall. Pamington said, "I will tell you the truth. I bought the goods from a man named Ernst, who lives in Camberwell New Road. "I remarked to the officer in the hearing of Pamington, "That man was in the employ of the firm." We then went to the warehouse, where Pamington produced a lot of other instruments, the six cell testers being amongst them. He said that he bought them from Ernst; he had one deal with him and bought all the instruments, which he pointed out. He produced a receipt for £4 signed by Ernst. He also produced the letter from Duncan to Ernst referring to the iron clad switches. Sergeant Wright pointed out that this letter was on the company's notepaper and told Pamington he must have known that Ernst was in the employ of the firm. Pamington denied that he knew it. Asked as to pencil marks upon the letter, "Bennett, 316, Kennington Road, and Clarke, 298, Brixton Road," Pamington said they were the names and addresses of pawnbrokers and that he purchased the tickets for electrical instruments pledged with them with the other goods from Ernst. He also said he had redeemed the goods. Pointing out the telephone number, "Dal. 1744," Sergeant Wright said it was the telephone number of the firm and Pamington must have known that Ernst was employed there. The sergeant added, "The price you paid was quite inadequate, and I shall take you into custody." He was then arrested. The price of a secondhand polarised Bell line tester would be somewhere about a sovereign. The works have been closed since I have been in attendance here because having so many of my men in attendance here there would have been no supervision. They will be reopened at the con-elusion

of this trial. Since I have been manager there have been sales of some old stock and new stock has been sold in the ordinary course of business.

Cross-examined by Mr. Marshall. My salary of £3 per week has always been paid up to the present. There is a balance due to Lisle. I have satisfied myself that all the goods invoiced to Ernst left the premises on April 26 and 27. I have heard that the company was not actually formed until May 13.

(Thursday, December 2.)

THOMAS CHARLES WATERS , 13, Boston Road, Walthamstow. I am in the employment of the Duncan Engineering Company, Limited, as an instrument maker and I was in Duncan's employ before the business was turned into a company. I was employed on piecework in the manufacture of certain goods supplied to the War Office. I drew a certain amount as weekly wages and when the job is accepted by the War Office we draw the balance. On Saturday, September 11, I had conversation with Duncan with regard to wages in connection with the War Office business. Referring to the items in the stock sheet, "20 single duplex switches, £8 10s., they were in stock three or four years ago; it may be five or six years ago.

Mr. Leycester objected that this matter had no bearing upon the indictment.

Mr. Mulligan said his object was to show that articles were included in the stock sheets which had long since been disposed of.

Detective-sergeant GEORGE WRIGHT. In consequence of certain instructions on December 24, about 3.30, I went to Farringdon Road and there saw Pamington at a stall. I said to him, "I am a police officer. Certain articles which have been pointed out on this stall have been identified as stolen from the Foxcroft and Duncan Engineering Company, of Hackney. How did you become possessed of them?" He said, "I can prove how I got them, but it will take me three days to do so." I said, "Who did you buy them from?" He said, "I do not know the man's name." I said, "Where does he live?" He said, "I do not know. I have a receipt." I said, "Where is it?" He said, "That is my business; you can know nothing." I said, "The onus lies upon you to give a reasonable explanation of how you became possessed of this property. If you do not give me any particulars I shall be bound to take you into custody." He then said, "I have the receipt at home, but it will want finding." I said, "All right, I will come and assist you. "We then went to his address in Newcastle Row. On the way there he said, "I bought the things of a man named Ernst, of Camberwell New Road." The witness Chinn was present and said, "That man worked for the firm." At prisoner's address in Newcastle Row the witness Lisle identified six cell testers and other articles. I asked Pamington where he got these. He said, "From the same man. I had one deal with him. I have a receipt if I can find it. "I then assisted to search among the papers and I found the letter from the

Foxcroft and Duncan Engineering Company which has been produced. I then asked him, "Have you been to this firm and had dealings with them?" He said, "No, I have not been there. Ernst came here and said could I do with certain things. I received that letter. I did not know that Ernst was agent for the firm." We continued to search the premises and found a receipt signed "Ernst. "After looking at it he said, "There you are. There is my receipt. That is what I paid for the goods." I asked him what the writing in pencil referred to. He said he bought two pawntickets from Ernst relating to some volt metres pledged. I also pointed out the firm's telephone number and said, "It is clear you must have known Ernst was employed there. The price you have paid is inadequate and I shall take you into custody for receiving these goods. "I conveyed him to the police station, where he was detained until the arrest of the other two prisoners. I arrested Duncan at one a.m. on the early morning of the 25th, as he was about entering his address in Pembury Road, Hackney. I was with Sergeant Smith. I said, "We are police officers. We have arrested two men named Pamington and Ernst for stealing and receiving certain volt metres, etc., from the firm of the Foxcroft and Duncan Engineering Company, Limited. I shall now arrest you for being concerned with them." He said, "Oh! oh! All right." I found the postcard produced addressed "Mr. L. Ernst," dated May 4. Pamington said he found it amongst the pledges which he took out of pawn. I also found an invoice relating to a small dynamo at Pamington's address made out in the name of Mr. White.

Detective-sergeant SMITH gave corroborative evidence as to the arrests.

Mr. Leycester, for Duncan, submitted that there was no evidence to go to the Jury in support of the indictment. The evidence of what occurred at the time of the finding of the goods in Duncan's absence was, of course, not evidence against him. Also the evidence as to the price, possibly inadequate, at which the goods were transferred from Ernst to Pamington was no evidence at all that they were stolen by Duncan. One had exactly the same evidence, for instance, in bankruptcy cases where men obtained goods on credit and disposed of them. The prosecution had proved no act amounting to larceny. The mere fact that the things were returned to the premises of the prosecutors to be made up would not make them the property of the limited company. The finding of certain of the articles on Pamington's stall was no evidence of larceny.

The Common Serjeant held that there was evidence for the Jury.

Mr. Marshall made a similar submission on behalf of Ernst, stating that he had endeavoured all through this case to find in what way the prosecution sought to show that Ernst had taken these goods away or had received them, or that they had at any time been in Ernst's possession.

The Common Serjeant said that with regard to Ernst, he would like to hear what, counsel for the prosecution had to say.

Mr. Mulligan said there was primary evidence that Ernst was constantly about the works and, for the most part, was in Duncan's office; that was the evidence of Lisle. There was also a postcard dated May 4 in Duncan's handwriting, "Dear sir,—Do not forget to bring along the 2 in. brass case meter to-morrow. "That showed he was in possession of some of these 2 in. brass case meters and that Duncan was getting them from him. It showed the connection up to that date. Then there was the admission to the detective-sergeant, "The goods were given to me by Mr. Duncan, the manager, as commission for services rendered before the company was formed. "He further said, in answer to the question, "Have you had goods from Duncan since it has been a company?" "Yes, I was hard up at the time and ill and wanted money." That was clearly an admission that he had two lots of goods, the goods in April before the company took over the business, and the other goods in July. There was also the receipt signed by Ernst on May 25, after the company was formed, which showed that he was parting with goods to Pamington at a ridiculously low price.

Mr. Marshall asked the Common Serjeant to find as a point of law that under the two agreements until completion, which was fixed at the earliest at May 11, all these goods belonged to Duncan.

The Common Serjeant. Assuming that they were in point of law Duncan's goods, of course, he was in such a position then that he had no right to be disposing of them for his own benefit without the company got the benefit of it, but they were not the goods of the company until the company came into existence.

Mr. Marshall. That would be impossible. If on April 28 the property in those goods belonged to Duncan alone, it did not matter twopence what became of the proceeds; he had a right to dispose of these goods, although it might be that as between himself and the Kappa Syndicate, or as between himself and the company, he might have to account, but he would have a perfect right to give a title to them to Ernst either as a gift or as commission. If Duncan was in a position to give Ernst a good title to them, it did not matter to the prosecutors or anybody else in this world what he did with them, and their being found on Pamington's stall did not affect the matter.

The Common Serjeant held that there was evidence that Ernst took part in stealing them, or, if Duncan had stolen them, receiving them knowing them to have been stolen. He was there to watch the company's interests, and he said, "After I was there to watch the company's interests—really to watch the manager—the manager gave me the things because I was hard up, and I went out and found a costermonger to buy them. "The point was that he knew the position of Duncan.

Mr. McDonald submitted there was no case against Pamington, inasmuch as he was charged with stealing. With regard to the charge of receiving the goods knowing them to have been feloniously stolen, he submitted that the transaction between Pamington and Ernst was an absolutely bona-fide one. The fact that Ernst sold these goods to

Pamington for £4 did not affect the question that Pamington knew that they were stolen property.

The Common Serjeant declined to with draw the case from the Jury.


WOOLMER JAMES VICTOR DUNCAN (prisoner, on oath). Four years ago Mr. Foxcroft left the business, and since that time it has been my own. Till these matters arose no charge of any kind was made against me. In the spring of this year I was in financial difficulties, and could not complete one or two big contracts I had, and I had one or two county court summonses in as well. I had a substantial amount of plant and stock upon my premises of the value of £2,000 or £3,000. I had book debts owing to me to the amount of about £50 or £60, and for these reasons I was desirous of getting more capital put into the business. I consulted a Mr. Murphy about it, and he introduced me to Ernst about the middle of March. Subsequently Ernst introduced me to Mr. Campbell-Everden at Suffolk House. I told him I was desirous of turning the business into a company as I wanted more capital. Everden said he was open to do it. I asked for 2,000 debentures and £2,000 cash for my debts amounting to about £250 to be covered. Everden said he could not entertain the proposition as to cash. A few days afterwards I came to an arrangement with him that the debentures should be increased to £3,000, and that the debts should be taken over at £550, that including £300 overdraft at the bank. It was Everden's proposition, and I did not close with it at once. The offer was afterwards increased to 4,000 debentures and 3,000 shares, and the debts up to £550 as appears in the written agreement of the 7th of April. I said I wanted working capital because I had at the time a War Office contract for about £600 that I could not carry on. I was tied up for want of cash. Everden said there would be no difficulty in selling shares to provide working capital. I do not know in what capacity Ernst came down to the works. I believe Mr. Jenkins was the instigator of this. I did not pay Ernst any salary at all. I sent the takings to Jenkins. He said the debts had got to be covered, and I was to put in all the cash I could to cover them. The syndicate sent down a certain amount for wages, but nothing else was paid. I provided the petty cash and things went on in that way up to the signing of the agreement and the formation of the company. In the meantime I had provided £150 by borrowing from my aunt. At that time there was a man in possession for rent, the amount being, I think, about £70, and there were some judgments against me amounting to £20 or £30. The suggestion that I should borrow the money from my aunt came from Jenkins, as he said they could not form a company without the title was free. My aunt handed me a cheque in the first place for £100, which was payable to the Kappa Syndicate. I gave it to Mr. Jenkins, who paid out £20, I believe, to the landlord's man the same day for the brokers to go out. He also paid the expenses of one or two judgments, and I believe the wages were paid for that week now

I come to think of it, about £8 I think it would be. On April 26 I got this letter from the secretary of the Kappa Syndicate: "Dear Sir,—The £50 balance of the £150 must be forthcoming to-morrow in order to settle pressing creditors, so as to remove the present obstacles to the transfer of the business to the company. Immediately on this being done the company shall be registered as all the papers are ready for lodging with the Registrar. Miss Duncan may be assured that she shall be paid out of the first moneys available after the formation of the company. Please give this attention at once, as otherwise we fear the whole idea will collapse as far as you are concerned." Accordingly on April 27 I obtained another cheque of £50 from my aunt, payable to the Kappa Syndicate. As to what was done with the money I only know that it was got out of the bank by Mr. Jenkins and put into his pocket. The cash book of the company shows these cheques from Miss Duncan to be entered under date of August 31. An entry on the other side accounts for the expenditure of the £150, including £39 2s. 9d., the expenses of registering the company, wages £19, and so on. On May 14 I signed an agreement with the new company, to which, so far as I know, the Kappa Syndicate was no party at all. On May 15 a debenture trust deed was executed by which the debentures were invested in the Empyrean Trading Corporation, Limited, as trustees for the debenture holders, the Empyrean Company to get £50 a year for acting as trustees. On May 17 there was a further agreement by which the Empyrean were to provide offices and secretaries for £100 a year—at least, so I have ascertained since, but as I was never advised of any directors meeting I do not know. I never received any official intimation of being appointed a director. I never had notice of board meetings and never attended any, and it is a deliberate mis-statement of the witness Ever den when he states that I did. They kept me out of it as much as they possibly could. I was told that the salary of a director was to be £100 a year. I had a telephone message from Mr. Jenkins that I was to receive £3 a week. The other directors besides myself were Everden, Reynolds, and Jenkins. I could not say who was chairman. I believe it was provided by the memorandum and articles of association that each director was to have a salary of £100 a year and the chairman £150. I kept books in connection with my business in addition to the instrument order book and the invoice book. They were taken away by the accountants somewhere towards the end of May. I was not asked for a balance-sheet of the business before the company was formed nor for any stock sheet. The stock sheets which have been produced were made out, I believe, during the period from May 14 to August 19. Before the latter date nobody saw them but myself and Ernst. After the books were taken away I had to keep my accounts in the best way I could, partly in a memorandum book, partly in the copy invoice book, and on slips of paper. When I was suspended these materials were left in the drawer in my office. Up till the time of the agreement of April 28 I believed that the stock belonged to myself and not to the Kappa Syndicate; the purchase had not

taken place and I had received no consideration whatever for parting with it. Previous to April 7 I had a verbal arrangement with Ernst that I was to pay him £100 for his introduction if the deal came through. As I did not get any cash from the company, as I had expected, I gave him goods to level the amount. He wanted a settlement of the amount because the company had gone on the way and he was hard up, so I told him I had a lot of surplus goods, and if I could get rid of them I should be pleased to let him have them. None of the goods I handed to him were included in the stock sheets. The invoices of the two lots of goods were left on the premises when I was suspended. They included some goods found at Pamington's, as to which I am not now charged. I supplied to Ernst 11 ft. 3 in. brass case metres at 20s. each, incomplete. In that state they are not saleable except as old metal. That applies also to the 20 motor metres appearing in the invoice of April 28, and the 25 2 in. motor metres appearing in the invoice of April 29. On July 15 Lisle had an order to make up three ampere metres and six motor-car metres. The ampere metres were returned by Pamington to be completed. I knew at that time that Ernst had disposed of some of the goods to Pamington. The 3 in. ampere metre produced, No. 7,531, had a card scale. It is usual to have a card scale on the 3 in. dial, but not on the 2 in. The cost of finishing was very small, about 2s. each. I did, in fact, charge Pamington that sum for finishing it, and the money was paid on the spot. I put it into petty cash, and entered it in one of the memorandum books, which were left in my desk when I was suspended. The six motor metres which Lisle completed came from Ernst. I do not know the exact date, but they are among the lot that he brought back at different times, and they were finished for Pamington, who paid 1s. each for them and took them away. At this time Ernst was still about the works, and was getting no salary payment, which had ceased about the beginning of July. He was supposed to be an agent going about trying to sell things. Everden had stated that he was an agent, and I entered it as an agent's order to distinguish it from the orders that went out to other people. If I had wanted to cover up these deliveries I should not have entered it myself. I could easily have given instructions to have these finished without entering them in the book. When the motor metres had gone to Ernst—there were in all 45—there were none left in stock, with the exception of one that had been returned. When on May 21 I received the order from the United Motor Industries for one dozen motor-car metres I got one dozen from Ernst and gave them to the witness Lisle to complete, as appears in the instrument order book of that date, one of them being the one in stock. On the 24th there was an order from Messrs. Walker and Hutton, of Scarborough, for two 3 in. brass case gravity metres. We had none of the instruments in stock, so I communicated with Ernst and asked him to let me have two. In exchange for the things he returned I let him have the six cell testers. I afterwards obtained orders from other people for motorcar meters, which were supplied out of the meters I got Back from Ernst, and in each case I let Ernst have other goods in exchange for

the motor metres that he brought back. Pamington came to the works on two occasions, about the middle of June and about the middle of July. The telephone receivers he took away I bought at a sale when I started business ten years ago, and I had had them ever since; I could not get rid of them. Speaking from memory there were six or eight. They were absolutely unsaleable, and Pamington gave 6d. each for them, and £1 for some old metal. I put the money into petty cash, and I was not receiving any, and entered it in my memorandum book. On Pamington's first visit he asked if we had any switches in stock, as he thought he might be able to place an order for about 50 of them, but he could not place an order without having a sample. I gave him instructions for the iron-clad switch to be finished off, and he took the sample away with him on his barrow. I wrote to him giving him a quotation for about 50, but when he took it away he said he did not think that under present regulations they would pass the corporation requirements. Such switches are used for switching off the electric supply in buildings. The case was an old design, which I designed myself some three or four years ago: in fact, I designed all the instruments which are produced here. The corporation engineers require something more now than they used to, and the consequence is that the working parts of the switch are much too near the case. The corporation engineer has the passing of all installations in his district, and sends down a man before they put on the supply. We have consequently had to cut away the partitions in the top of these cases to get the switches sold at all lately—you might say they have had to be more or less faked up to get rid of them. This is one of the switches I offered to Pamington for 5s., and that is a fair price for it as it stands now. I have a lot of them in stock, perhaps 30, speaking from memory. The whole of these transactions with the other prisoners were carried out quite openly, without any concealment, and the prices at which I invoiced the things to Ernst were the full list prices. I got as much out of it as I could. He had no goods which are not in the invoices unless he had other things in exchange. I could not have expected to get them back without giving him something in exchange for them. The cheque for £7 14s. 10d. which I received from United Motor Industries, I used for paying accounts in connection with two switch contracts I had in hand at the time, which I could not finish otherwise. All the money was expended on things at the works. I did not appropriate any of it for my own pocket. I was paying out petty cash right away from April 7 and never got a penny from Suffolk House. Money is still due me on account of petty cash and wages, something like £70. I had to pay for materials more quickly than I used to because when the company was formed the people who used to supply me on credit made inquiries as to the Suffolk House people, and they would supply me no longer. As to the cheques for £10 12s. 4d. and £5 15s. 10d. from the War Office, which I paid into my aunt's accounts, at that time the rating department of the Corporation had already summoned me, and the electricity department had put in a distraint at the private house, where I was living with my aunt, for power supplied for running the works, which was the com-pany's

debt, the company having taken over my liabilities. I had no cash of my own to pay it with at that time. The supply had been cut off some fortnight or three weeks previously, and the works consequently stopped. I wrote to Suffolk House every two or three days about it, but they took no notice of it. I expect I communicated with Mr. Jenkins, as he was to the fore in all these matters. The Town Clerk was informed that I was responsible for it. A distress was also put in at my aunt's house for rates at the works. There was due for the electric light £12 5s., less the deposit of £5. I sacrificed the deposit, and paid £7 5s. by cheque of my aunt, and there was also a payment of £4 1s. in respect of the general rate. I never endeavoured to conceal the fact that I had received postal orders for £20 19s. 6d. and 9s. 6d., and I accounted for payments for wages and other things in respect of them amounting to £20 14s. 8d. I paid the wages because the men were threatening summonses, and, in fact, they did go up to the police court. I had discharged some of the wages before I got the postal orders, borrowing money for the purpose. The statement that I said that the book debts amounted to £600 is a gross misstatement. Why should I want a company to be formed if I had got £600 coming in a few days? Speaking from memory I do not think I mentioned any figure for the book debts; there was possibly £50 or £60 outstanding.

(Friday, December 3.)

WOOLMER JAMES VICTOR DUNCAN (prisoner, on oath), further examined. The £550 liabilities which were to be taken over by the company more than included the whole amount of my liabilities. Those liabilities have not been discharged. A judgment was obtained against me on November 16 in the High Court at the suit of a Mr. Dixon for a debt incurred before the company was formed. The writ is endorsed for £53 8s. 10d. and £7 10s. costs. Claims are being made against me in respect of other liabilities. The bank overdraft is still unpaid and about three weeks ago I had a letter from the bank manager wanting to know when it was going to be cleared off.

Cross-examined by Mr. Mulligan. I had carried on the business before April of this year for about 10 years, for the greater part of the time in conjunction with a gentleman named Foxcroft, who retired about four years ago. His son was afterwards assistant in the business and ceased to be so at the latter end of last year. I cannot tell the date when Murphy introduced me to Ernst. At the interviews before the signing of the agreement Everden did not tell me that Ernst was getting one-third of whatever profit the Kappa Syndicate was making as commission. I certainly did not understand all the agreement with the Kappa Syndicate. I did not understand about the debentures which I understand have now been increased to £10,000. I understood that the syndicate was purchasing my business for £10,000, but as my plant and stock were only worth about £4,000 I did not want £10,000. I am not up to all the company promoting terms. I understood I was to have £3,000 in shares and £4,000 in

debentures. I understood that the business was to remain my property until it was taken over by a company, and I did just the same as I did before. Jenkins told me the company had been registered at a certain date. I made inquiries and found it was not so. I certainly suggest that the company agreed to supply me with cash as manager, not for the purchase of the business, but they undertook to clear off the liabilities. Mr. Everden said with regard to working capital there would be no difficulty in selling 4,000 shares. I never suggested that those shares should be subscribed for by the public; I was not a company promoter. I never suggested that advertisements should be put in the public newspapers for the purpose of getting subscription for these shares. I was works manager; that was all. The draft advertisement produced is not an advertisement for subscriptions; it is an advertisement for two premium pupils they wanted to get. I do not know that Ernst was at the works representing the Kappa Syndicate. I do not know who paid his salary between April 27 and May 14. When the second agreement was executed on May 13 I became manager for the company. There was another draft advertisement in my handwriting, stating that the prosperous business of the Foxcroft Engineering Company had recently been formed into a limited company with the object of extending its already widespread business. Mr. Jenkins suggested that something like that should be done. After I signed the agreement of April 7 I purported to account to the Kappa Syndicate for sums of money I received. I did not, in fact, account for all the sums. I cannot at this date say whether I accounted for everything except what was necessary for petty cash. The Kappa Syndicate did, in fact, send down sums from time to time to pay wages, but only to the amount I sent up to them. The Kappa Syndicate paid a judgment summons of £11 odd out of the £150 lent by my aunt. They also paid the rent out of the money. They only paid what we gave them the money to pay. As to whether I suggest that the £100 was expended in any way except in paying off judgment and other debts of the company, I do not know where it went to when Jenkins got hold of it. I do not know that £200 debentures of the company were allotted to Miss Duncan in satisfaction of her advance of £200; she is holding them as security. I wrote on May 12 to the Kappa Syndicate: "Dear Sirs,—Mr. Ernst tells me you are arranging with him for his commission, and as I have agreed to give him £500 of my debentures out of my £2,000 he had requested me to inform you of the fact, so that there will be no misunderstanding, and you can then arrange among yourselves as to the disposition of these debentures." I knew at that date that Ernst was getting commission from the Kappa Syndicate, but I cannot now remember all these details. I certainly did not disclose to the Kappa Syndicate or to the Foxcroft and Duncan Engineering Company that I had already given Ernst goods representing £100 for commission. At that time (May 12) I was in sole charge of the works; I had not handed it over. Under my control I had to carry on the business as a going concern properly. On April 26 and 27 I gave Ernst, approximately, £100 worth of the stock in trade, which I had a perfect right to do. As to whether I

had a perfect right to give away the whole lot, if I had not a debt to that amount, it is not likely I should have done so. I could not have said to Ernst, "I will give you £3,000 commission. Take the whole of the stock for it. "I seriously suggest that I gave the £100 of stock to Ernst for commission for inducing the syndicate, or whoever they were, at Suffolk House, to form the company. If a company was not formed Ernst was not to get a penny. I only paid Ernst for one fortnight in August. That was because I wanted somebody to take charge of the works while I was away. He had been about there a little bit and knew something about it. I was not paying him on behalf of the company, but I paid him out of the company's money, because I was not getting any money myself. I think he was paid by the company occasionally down to July or August. The £500 debentures to Ernst was not commission but a presentation for assisting me in the works and in various ways. I had a perfect right to deal with my debentures as I liked. I did not understand that he was representing the company at all; he came there really as a friend of mine. I had no suspicion that he was representing the Kappa Syndicate. I did not know he was in touch with them. Of the £475 said to have been advanced by the syndicate I only recognise one or two items as being liabilities of mine. The syndicate, of course, had to pay the expenses of the flotation. I say I never attended any board meetings, I was not at a meeting on July 3. (Minute book, with prisoner's name entered as present, produced.) I admit that between May, 1908, and May, 1909, I practically kept no books. The books were there, but had not been made up. After April 7 till the tune I left in September the invoice book was at my disposal except for a period of, perhaps, two or three weeks, when the accountants took it away. No one but myself and Ernst saw the stock sheets before August. I got the information contained in the stock sheets from the works and from previous stock sheets. It is not a fact that the plant and stock sheets are in the handwriting of Foxcroft, jun. The telephone receivers are priced in the stock sheet at £5 3s. 6d. I cannot say whether they are the same as I sold to Pamington for 6d. each. There was any amount of old stock there, a room full. Three double pole merged contacts in iron cases are priced at £1 17s. 6d., which I suppose is the list price. In the certificate we stated that depreciation had been allowed for old and damaged stock. The 50 ampere iron clad switches are put down at 12s. 6d. apiece. The polarised "Bell" line tester is priced at £3 108: in the invoice to Ernst. In the stock sheet it stands at £20. I think the figure 20 is intended to indicate that there were 20 of them. They were a lot of old ones that I bought from the War-Office about five years ago when they came from South Africa and they have been on the shelf ever since. With 10s. or 15s. of work. upon them they would be worth £3 10s. Of course, when I buy things from the War Office I do not give inflated prices for them. The certificate states that they are at cost price, but I do not accept the suggestion that this was not an honest valuation according to the certificate. There may be other items in the stock sheet which are inaccurate. In a stock of this amount it is impossible to certify every

item. I cannot say whether there are not items which are undervalued. With regard to the item 20 single and duplex switches, £8 10s., I cannot say whether it is a fact that they had been supplied to the War Office months before. In 1906 I had an order for 20 or 25 and I made up the number to 50 for stock. It is impossible for me to say whether these 20 are identical with those. It is not true that they were never in stock at all. "Agents' stock" or "agents' order" is a phrase constantly used throughout the instrument order book, and it is used to distinguish agents' orders from the orders of customers. When goods go out to agents it is for the purpose of their selling them. In the case of the six cell testers given to Ernst in exchange for the volt meters he returned it was not necessary to put Ernst's name against the entry. The words "agents' stock" opposite the entry does not necessarily mean that the cell testers were still the property of the company. If I had wanted to cover up this deal I should not have made the entry at all. I had not to account to Lisle for them leaving the premises. With regard to the volt meters that went to Ernst when I got the order from United Motor Industries, I had only one in stock. I received the cheque produced for £7 14s. 10d. dated July 20, 1909, from Motor Industries, Limited, and returned it with a request for a fresh cheque not marked "a/c payees only," as the amount was not to go through the company's books, they not taking over until June. They struck out "a/c payees only" and returned the cheque, which I gave to Ernst, who cashed it. With regard to the statement that the company did not take over until June, my view was that the company did not purchase the business till they gave me the debentures, which was not till June 16. I believe the amount is marked off in the invoice book and it is entered in the small memorandum book I used as a cash book after the accountant had taken the proper books away. The expenditure was on slips of paper. The iron clad switch I gave to Pamington on June 15 was a sample. The switches I wrote to him about on June 24 offering them at 3s. and 5s. each are presumably those entered in the stock sheets at 10s. 6d. and 12s. 6d. each. I cannot swear whether since the company was formed I have represented to customers that the value of the iron clad switches was the figure given in the stock sheet. I might have done so if a voltage installation was in contemplation. I did not tell the company of the receipt of the War Office cheques until the matter of this prosecution came up. I did not think the receipt of the cheques was a matter that ought to be brought to the notice of the company employing me under the circumstances, but I thought it right a few days later to inform the company of the receipt of the postal orders for £20 9s. 6d. and 9s. 6d. and to enclose an account showing how I had dealt with those moneys. One was expenditure for the company and the other was not. If the company had paid out those distraints it would not have been necessary to use their cheques.

(Monday, December 6.)

WOOLMER JAMES VICTOR DUNCAN (prisoner, on oath), further cross-examined by Mr. Mulligan. There were originally 50 single duplex

switches. Thirty of them are referred to in the invoice to the War Office of July 7, 1904. By July, 1906, there was only one left in stock. There were other switches of this type made—lots; I have made these duplex switches for years, ever since I have, been in business. We made practically all of them for the Ordnance Stores. At the time when Ernst was looking after the business for me in August I was away with the Territorials on Salisbury Plain. I have belonged to the Volunteer force for twenty years and am brigade artificer. I did not consult with Ernst as to the disposal of the postal orders. Directly after I came back I received instructions to kick him out. In the account I rendered to the company is an item, "Self, £4." The explanation is that the company deducted £2 from, my salary on July 17, £1 on July 24, and £2 on July 31. I was simply taking it back; their own sheets show it. The average weekly wages at the works were between £13 and £15. That did not include Ernst. Except on the one occasion when I was away I had nothing to do with the payment of Ernst. The company crossed out the £4 in red ink and put £3. I did not give a receipt for wages; the money was sent down to me in cash from Suffolk House by the typist. I did not at the time of the signing of the agreement of April 7 tell Mr. Everden that the War Office owed me £600. I should not have gone to the syndicate to form a company if I had had £500 coming in in a few days from the War Office. I said the contract for £600 was half finished and I wanted another £60 or £70 to carry it through. The syndicate said they were going to give me the money in a week or so; they kept on saying so every week. I complain that my liabilities of £550 have not been discharged. The syndicate say now they were under no obligation to discharge my liabilities; that is where they did me. They did, in fact, discharge a liability to Messrs. Alabaster, Gatehouse, and Co., but they got £150 to pay it with. They would not have done it if I had not found the money. The judgment of Dixon against me was in respect of brass, copper, and gun mountings. I did not supply a list of liabilities to the accountants; they took them off the file. They asked me to give them the books and files and receipts. From April 8 to September 6 I accounted to the directors for receipts amounting to £42 6s. 4d., according to their cash book, for which I do not vouch. I did not account for Walker and Hutton's cheque for £3, which I received on July 28, nor for a cheque for £4 19s. 9d. drawn by Emmanuel and Sons.

Mr. Leycester objected that Emmanuel's cheque was entirely fresh matter. A large number of issues had been introduced which in point of law were absolutely irrelevant and the time had come when his lordship, in the exercise of his discretion, should prevent the introduction of any new issues. He had already to defend Duncan in respect of six different items of larceny, five different items of embezzlement, allegations with regard to the stock sheets, and matters of that kind, and if issues were to be multiplied in that way it necessarily embarrassed the defence.

The Common Serjeant observed that it embarrassed everybody, but that was not a reason for leaving this matter out.

Further cross-examined. I passed the cheque through my aunt's bank, and did not account for it to the company. I received the cheque on September 3. I made no reference to it when I wrote to the company on September 7 with reference to the postal orders. The cheque from Motor Industries was in payment of 12 2 in motor meters, 11 of which I had received from Ernst. I did not give him the cheque from Motor Industries to cash and keep the proceeds because I was selling his property, but because I had not received a penny for petty cash right away from May 14, and I was all that out of pocket and more. Walker and Hutton's cheque was in payment for four of the instruments which Ernst had returned. I think I first met Pamington on June 13. He was brought to the works by Ernst. I did not know that under the alias of White he acted as manager for his wife. The invoice to "White" does not appear in the invoice book so far as I can remember. We had our money's worth out of the dynamo we repaired for him; we used it for nearly a month for charging accumulators. I am confident that I have not got value for transferring my business to the company, and that the Kappa Syndicate have not carried out their part of the bargain; I have not got any working capital and I have not got my liabilities paid. I still say that the valuation contained in these stock sheets as at April 30 is approximately correct I cannot go over every item, and they have absolutely nothing to do with the formation of the company. As to whether the plant sheets are exactly identical with those of 1903, with the exception of a 23 ft. bench, 2 ft. 6 in. wide, there is hardly likely to be any material alteration of plant during six years. Three Cushman's chucks charged at £1 17s. 6d. in 1903 are charged at £1 17s. in 1909—six years afterwards. In the 1903 sheet there is an item of 9s. for a pair of couplings, in 1909 the figure is £1 2s., but I do not know that the article is the same. The item of £1 0s. 3d. charged in 1903 in respect of 13 ft. 6 in. 1/2 in. shafting is advanced in 1909 to £1 9s. 3d., after six years' wear and tear. Other items altered are: One 9 in. pulley, 4 guineas in the old sheet, £5 8s. in the new; and 12 1 in. slip. pulleys, £1 8s. in the old sheet, £1 17s. 6d. in the new. I did not get this sheet out; it was done by various people; one room was done by one man and the shop was done by another. The figures are put in by the clerk we had in the office at the time. In the old sheet there are two 4 1/2 in. lathes put at £9; in the new sheet they are £15. The lathe shaft is put at £1 in 1903 and at £2 in 1909. According to the new stock sheet there should be 11 lathes, but I do not know how many lathes there are I take the figures from the stock sheets. I did not go round and count them.

The Common Serjeant. I do not understand what your certificate was worth if you do not know things were there, and did not look into values.

Witness. I cannot look into the value of every article in £3,000 or £4,000 worth of plant and stock, besides. The matter was rushed through by Mr. Jenkins. We sold one lathe in December of last year for £2 and one in January for £3. Of course, the man we ought to have had here is Jenkins. He advised us to do all this. He has been

at the back of everything; he pulls the strings, and he deliberately told us to make the valuation as high as we possibly could. I have not, in fact, transferred to the company all outstanding credits and accounts as provided by the agreement of May 14, because their part of the agreement has not been fulfilled. A three months' bill for £100 given me in respect of goods supplied was disclosed to the company, but I did not assign it to the company because it was in respect of a personal obligation. The drawer simply used the premises and it was a matter that had nothing to do with the company. I made complaint that the Kappa Syndicate had not carried out their part of the agreement before I was dismissed. I was making complaints every week. They supplied me with no petty cash and they would not carry out the War Office contract which I wanted £60 or £70 to finish. They kept telling me week after week that it was going to be done and they never did it. It is not the fact that the Kappa Syndicate could not get the working capital because I had misrepresented the value of the business. They did not have the stock sheets until August 14. The £100 worth of goods to Ernst was in satisfaction of a debt. There is a record of the exchanges of goods in the instrument order book. I did not represent to the promoters that the business was a prosperous business. It is so described in a draft advertisement I drew up at the suggestion of Mr. Jenkins, "Foxcroft and Duncan Engineering Company, Limited, manufacturers of all kinds of high-class electrical instruments, ace lamps, search lamps, etc. This prosperous business has recently been formed into a limited company with the object of extending their already widespread business. "The letter of September 8 from the secretary of the Foxcroft and Duncan Engineering Company with reference to the post-office orders of £20 9s. 6d. and 9s. 6d. asked me to attend a meeting at Suffolk House on the following day to give a personal explanation of ray conduct. I did not attend to "face the music." It was the first intimation I had received that there had been directors' meetings. It is true that I had not accounted for four or five cheques. I applied some of the money I received from Motor Industries in completing two switchboards I had in hand. I made a record of that expenditure. It is not true that no such records can be found, because I did not keep them. If the syndicate had wanted a balance-sheet when they proceeded to form a company they could have had one. They formed the company without a balance-sheet and without wanting to see the stock sheet or anything at all; that shows what it was. I was only informed over the telephone that I had been appointed a director.

Re-examined. Of all the cheques that have been mentioned I put no part of the proceeds in my pocket. I can show by the total amount of my petty cash that every penny of them was used for the purposes of the company. I last saw Jenkins somewhere about the end of August. He has appeared neither at the police court nor here in the course of this prosecution. Though copies of the invoices of the things given to Ernst are not in the copy invoice book, the draft invoices were found in my drawer in the office and they show that the things were given to him.

ALEXANDER FERGUSSON , from the Accountant's Department of the Hackney Borough Council, gave evidence of the issue of a summons in June for electric light and power supplied to Foxcroft and Duncan. The summons had reference to the March quarter. After the summons there was distraint in the first instance at the works and afterwards at the house where prisoner Duncan was living.

The following witnesses were called to character: JAMES CRAIG, engineer, HENRY FREDERICK STANLEY, accountant and auditor, and THOMPSON BLYTHE, coal merchant.

Louis ERNST (prisoner, on oath). I first met Duncan some time in March. It was put to me by him that his business was short of capital, and could I do anything to assist him. I made efforts to obtain fresh capital, going first to the Brown Engineering Company and afterwards to Mr. Jenkins at Suffolk House. I had known Jenkins for about six months in connection with a motor business. I explained the position to him and to Mr. Everden. I told them in the first instance the liabilities of the business were £200. I do not remember whether the bank overdraft was mentioned at the time. At the subsequent interview, at which Mr. Duncan was present, Jenkins said that he had a man who was prepared to put £2,000 into the business at once. The actual amount required to run the business I do not think was mentioned, but various points were discussed. It was said either by Jenkins or Everden that there would be no trouble in finding the necessary working capital. Duncan first of all asked for £2,000 cash and a share consideration of 3,000 fully-paid £1 shares. Everden said he would not consider the question of cash at all, and that he was prepared to draft an agreement for Duncan's consideration. Duncan had previously agreed to give me £100 for the introduction. As regards Jenkins and Everden I stipulated for one-third of the promotion profits and Jenkins and Everden were also to have a third each. There is no truth in the statement that after the agreement of April 7 I was to go down to the works to look after the interests of the Kappa Syndicate. Why I signed the certificates concerning the stock and plant as "Agent" was because I arranged with Jenkins to be agent for the Foxcroft and Duncan Engineering Company when registered. By "agent" I understood representing them and selling goods, and in August I was employed in that position. With regard to Duncan giving me goods instead of cash for my commission, Duncan, of course, did not get any cash in the promotion, and at the time he sent me the goods there was a doubt whether the new company would be formed at all, but when Duncan's aunt advanced £150 for the discharge of the pressing liabilities I felt sure the business would go through. I probably would let the matter stand over, but at that time I was very short of money myself, and I rather pressed Duncan for my commission. He said he could not get any cash consideration at all, but would not mind letting me have some of his surplus goods if I thought I could do anything with them as an equivalent. I believed that the goods still belonged to Duncan, notwithstanding the agreement of April 7 with the Kappa Syndicate: they could not, in my opinion, possibly belong to anyone else. The goods were sent to me quite

openly; there was no question of any concealment. He selected a number of goods, put them on the floor, and took a memorandum of them, and the same with the goods contained in the second invoice. In the early part of May I made an effort to dispose of the goods contained in the first lot. I pawned two of the cell testers for 7s. 6d., and later I pawned the portable volt meter, put down at £3 7s. 6d., for 2s. 6d. At various times I went about London trying to find a purchaser for some of these goods. I called at a number of engineering places and people having the handling of electrical instruments. They all said the goods were worth practically nothing to them, as if they received an order for an instrument that instrument would have to read from a given figure to a given figure.

(Tuesday, December 7.)

LOUIS ERNST (prisoner, on oath), further examined. On May 3 or 4 I heard from Duncan that he had an order for some of the 2 in. meters and he asked me to return some of them, which I did, he saying that anything he got from me he would exchange for something equivalent. The company had then been formed. I also returned several 3 in. brass case instruments at different times. I first met Pamington at his stall, I think, on May 23 and on May 29 sold to him for £4 5s. certain of the goods I had received from Duncan. Pamington asked me how much I wanted for them. I said, "I should think at least £20" He laughed at me and said it was too much and he could not think of it; I should have to come down. I told him it was absolutely necessary I should sell the goods. They were occupying a room in the house and did not belong to us. I said I must have some money and would take £10 for them. He said it was impossible and gave reasons. For one thing, he said, a lot of the stuff was worth nothing, except to scrap, as they were only empty cases or unfinished instruments. Pointing to the circuit breakers he said they were worth just what copper there was in them, as he might have them for years before he could dispose of them. I asked him to make me an offer. He said, "Well, I am ashamed to make you an offer. The goods are not worth a penny more than £4 to me. "I accepted the offer and included the pawntickets for the instruments I had pawned for the extra 5s. I also sold to him the instruments I received from Duncan in exchange for what I had returned. For the two 6 in. iron case and two 6 in. brass case meters I got 5s. a piece; for the 3 in. brass case instruments 24s., and for the cell testers 30s. At the time the exchanges were made Duncan apparently was in authority at the works. I took no part in making the valuation of the stock. I took part in the preparation of the lists of stock and plant. The preparation of those valuation lists in no way affected the price that was to be given to Duncan for his business.

Cross-examined by Mr. Mulligan. Duncan told me the stock was worth about £2,000 and the plant and fixtures between £1,200 and £2,000. I do not remember whether any figure for goodwill was mentioned. "Uncompleted contract, £600"—that was the War

Office contract, and there were a few small orders. Duncan explained afterwards that £60 or £70 was required for the War Office contract. I told Duncan I was to get one-third of the profits of promotion just before the registration of the company. I was constantly at the works from April 15 or 16. I did not, in fact, receive £2 a week from Suffolk House. Mr. Everden loaned me £1 at one time and 10s. at another as a matter between ourselves. I never disclosed to anybody at Suffolk House that I was receiving £100 commission from Duncan. After April 7 I was asked by Jenkins to go down to the works and see Duncan, ask him for the keys, take charge of everything in the place and look after the business. I absolutely refused. I believed that the business belonged to Duncan until such time as he should sell it to the company and that so long as it belonged to him he could naturally do what he liked with it, but the question is put rather too broadly; there was no occasion for him to give me the whole business. When I sold the things I considered I was selling my own goods. I was, of course, not agent to sell the company's goods for a twentieth part of their value. All the people I went to explained that their orders were always for specific readings and it was of no use for them to buy promiscuously instruments which they might have in stock for years. I did not check the stock sheets. Jenkins telephoned that he wanted the stock sheets signed for the purpose of the balance-sheet. I rang up Mr. Jenkins and told him I could not swear to the accuracy of the sheets and therefore I did not want to sign them. He replied, "It is only a matter of form; sign them. "In the stock sheet of 1907 a Jandus lamp and a Pilsen lamp are put down at 10s. for the two; in 1909 they are valued at 10s. each. I think many of the discrepancies between the two periods can be explained. In 1909 the stock sheet was written by a clerk whose handwriting, as appears by the invoice book, is practically unintelligible. Mr. Duncan asked me if I could get the stock sheet copied; I took it home and my wife copied it. With regard to the plant sheet I certified, I did not check it, nor could I have done so; it would have taken me months and months. I do not know that there are numerous articles in the stock and plant sheets upon which from 20 to 100 per cent, more value has been put since they were taken in 1903. If I had been selling the goods I sold to Pamington on behalf of the company I should have expected to get the list price less discount. I should not have had the power to sell them for less. I do not remember whether, when I was arrested by Sergeant Smith, he told me Pamington had been found in possession of instruments the property of the Foxcroft and Duncan Engineering Company, Limited, of Hackney, amongst them being instruments which the firm alleged were not made until June or July last. I handed him the invoice, as has been stated. The officer then asked whether I had had goods from Duncan since the business had been turned into a company and I said I had. When I sold the things to Pamington I certainly did not expect to get the full market value or the list price, less 25 per cent, or 33 £ per cent. A lot of the things were invoiced to me at the full list price, although they were secondhand goods and a lot of them merely empty cases. I suppose Duncau

put in those things to bring up the amount to £100 as quickly as possible. I was not familiar with the goods and therefore could not judge. As to the preparation of the plant and stock sheets, Duncan had them prepared in rough and asked me if I would get them copied as he was busy looking after the other work. I accordingly took them home and had them copied. That is all that I have had to do with their preparation. I took no part in taking the stock. When the lists were copied I added up the columns. With regard to the two circuit breakers included in the invoice of April 28, I do not know whether they were new instruments or secondhand. I naturally looked at the articles I was getting at the time, but I am a mechanical not an electrical engineer, and that is where I got "left. "I only know the value of these articles from the lists. I do not know that the double one is worth £7 and the single one £5. They were invoiced at that price to me; that is all I know. With regard to Miss Duncan's advance, I have heard that she was to have £200 Debentures to hold as security until the money was returned. With regard to the cheques that came in after April 7, I only know of the one for £7 14s. 10d., which Duncan asked me to get cashed. I do not remember the endorsement, but it must have been correct, otherwise it would not have gone through. I cashed it with Mrs. Maiden, a butcher's wife, and gave the proceeds to Duncan. Duncan wanted the money to get material for the completion of some switch boards. I know nothing pf the real value of the goods I had from Duncan. I had considerably more than one deal with Pamington. I know from Pamington's own explanation that he went by the name of White. As nearly as I can remember he told me that he and his brothers carried on business under the name of White Bros, at one time, and the name had stuck to him ever since, but that his right name was Pamington and his wife is now doing business under the name of "E. Pamington," as I understand. It can hardly he said that I introduced Pamington to Duncan as a dealer in scrap metal. After I had sold Pamington the first lot of goods I said to Duncan, "I have got nicely left on these goods." He asked me whom I had taken them to. I said a dealer in Farringdon Road, and he said, "Humph. "Sometime after that Duncan asked me if that dealer of mine sometimes bought scrap metal. I said I did not know, but I would see. I went to Pamington and asked him if he dealt in scrap metal. He said he did, and wanted to know where it was. I told him, and he said he would come down and look at it. He came down to the works and I introduced him to Duncan. I believe he bought some scrap. I know nothing about iron-clad switches beyond what I have heard in Court. I am aware that the 20 motor meters, given by me to Duncan, were sent to be callibrated. As to whether it ever struck me that if I had taken these goods to the Kappa Syndicate I might have got a better price for them, it is very questionable whether I would have sot anything from the Kappa Syndicate.

Re-examined. I did not know at that time that the Kappa Syndicate had not got a shilling, but I knew they were financially strong. I was not at that time aware that the subscribed capital was 7s. When I had the circuit breakers they were not polished up as they are now.

They were quite rough looking and had verdigris on them. Pamington told me when he came to look at them that they were practically worth nothing except for the copper that was in them, as he might have them in stock for years and years before he could sell them; they were not a saleable article. I did not retain a shilling for myself out of the cheque for £7 14s. 10d. which I cashed for Duncan. As regards the dealings between Duncan and Pamington, I had no part of the scrap metal sold to Pamington or any of the proceeds. I simply introduced Pamington to Duncan. After the company was formed I had nothing belonging to the company except what I took in exchange for the articles which were returned at Duncan's request. Although the motor meters came from me I received none of the money which the company charged their customers for them.

ARTHUR PAMINGTON (prisoner, on oath). I am not a costermonger, but an electrician, and have been in business on my own account. In the first place I was at 114, Oakley Street, Westminster Bridge Road. When those premises had to be pulled down I moved to 117, Oakley Street, and whilst there I had also a shop in Kennington Road. Finally I went to Westminster Bridge Road, where I failed. At that time I went by the name of White Bros. I did not become a bankrupt when I broke up the business, because I could not pay my rent, or the business broke me up. The business in Farringdon Road is my wife's; I am her manager and buyer. She gives me £1 a week pocket money. I remember when Chinn and Lisle visited my wife's stall. We have all sorts of people stop and look at the stalls, and a lot of people ask impertinent questions about where we got this and where we got that, and so on. I do not tell everybody where I got my goods from. The business would not last long if I did that, as people would know as much as I did. I was in business in Westminster in all between 14 and 15 years. At the last place but one I paid £42 a year, and I moved out of that into a place of £120 a year, and that is where I got broke. On the occasion of Chinn and Lisle's visit my wife called me and said I was wanted. Chinn said to me, "Where did you get them articles?" pointing on the stall. I said, "What business is that of your's? If you want to know anything they come from Stevens's. Then Chinn said, "What is your name? Do these stalls belong to you?" I said, "No, they belong to my wife. I am manager and buyer," so I handed him a card. He said, "Is this your name at the bottom?" referring to the name "Wright. "I said, "Yes." He said, "lam interested in these goods that you have got on the stall here. I am Foxcroft and Duncan's manager," and then he walked away before I had time to answer him. Lisle did not say a word. I had seen him before at the works. As a matter of fact there were goods I have bought at Stevens's on my wife's stall, including some goods manufactured by Messrs. Foxcroft and Duncan, engraved with their name and address. I bought these on February 5, 1909. There were also other articles of Foxcroft and Duncan's manufacture on the stall which I had got from Ernst. Chinn and Lisle afterwards came back with the detectives. The detectives were in plain clothes, and I did not know who they were. Wright spoke to me. I do not recollect him

saying that he and Smith were police officers, and at the time I had no reason to believe they were. I began to think they might be police officers when Wright said to me, "You have got certain articles on that stall which are the property of Foxcroft and Duncan and have been stolen," or something to that effect. I said I had a receipt for them, and I think it was Chinn who asked were it was. I said, "It is round home. It might possibly take me a day to find it. "Then he said, "We will go and see if we can find it." I believe something was said about taking me into custody. We then proceeded towards my house. It occurred to me as we were going along that Ernst was the man I had bought them of, and I explained to the officer that I bought them of a man named Ernst, at Camber well New Road. I did not use the words "I will tell you the truth. "I do not remember saying anything like it. I believe the account given by the officer is right, but I do not remember everything, my memory is so bad. I do not recollect saying when asked where I got the things from "That is my business; you can know nothing." I had no reason to say it. At that time it had not dawned on me that Wright was a police officer. I may have told him at first that I did not know where the man lived that I bought the things of. It was when the detective said, "The onus lies upon you to give a reasonable explanation how you got these goods. If you do not give me any explanation I shall be bound to take you into custody," I realised that he was a police officer. It was then I said I had a receipt. We went to the warehouse. As soon as I opened the door Chinn said, "This is one of our instruments" referring to the double pole circuit breaker which was lying on the floor. I said, "I got it from the same man that I got the other things from. "We then searched for the receipt, and finally found it, and he drew attention to the pencil writing on it. The volt meters found were in the same condition as they now are, that is to say, not complete. I took the telephone number of Foxcroft and Duncan because Ernst said he could get the instruments calibrated for me.

(Wednesday, December 8.)

ARTHUR PAMINGTON , recalled, further examined. I did not tell the detectives I had had no previous dealings with Foxcroft and Duncan. How could I say such a thing when I was known to the witness Lisle? I produced to them the invoice of the repairs to the dynamo and I was there when Lisle was testing it. The statement must have been taken down wrongly in the depositions. The first time I went to the firm was after Ernst came to the stall and asked me if I bought scrap metal. I told him I did and he told me Duncan had some to dispose of. I told him I would go and see it and did so. Before that I asked Ernst if Duncan could test my dynamo as it had no plate and I did not know the output of it. I went to the works and saw Ernst. He introduced me to Mr. Duncan, who showed me the old metal and I bought it there and then. At the same time Duncan offered me the old telephone receivers and I made him an offer of 4s. for them, which he accepted. I should think there was a dozen of them, a job lot.

They were of several different patterns and right out of date, and you would never see them in use. I agree with Lisle that nobody but an idiot would buy such things. When I went after the old metal Ernst asked me if I could do with six 3 in. volt meters and ammeters, and as he did not know the value of them he asked me to make a price and I offered him 4s. for them, which he accepted. There was no secret about the transaction. I was not doing it like a burglar. I would have had nothing to do with it had I thought there was anything suspicious about it. I went to the works a second time in July about some more scrap metal and saw Ernst there. Ernst in the meantime had been to the stall and informed me there was another lot. I believe that I sent my man for the dynamo. The iron-clad switch was in the first lot. I noticed the switch and asked Duncan if he had got a quantity of them. He said "Yes," and I asked him to let me have one as a sample, with the lowest quotation for cash, as I thought I might be able to find customers for them. It was in connection with this matter that I got the letter of June 27 from Foxcroft and Duncan. I certainly did not tell the detective that Ernst was working for the firm. I did not know what he was. He certainly appeared to have something to do with the firm. When Ernst came to me on the first occasion on May 23 or 24 he asked me if I bought electrical instruments. I said, "Yes, anything appertaining to electricity." After I had seen the goods I told him that £20 was a ridiculous price and that only a few weeks ago I had bought some of the same sort of instruments at Stevens's auction rooms and told him the low price I paid for them. I told him most of the things were only fit for scrap and asked him, did he know anyone who could callibrate them for me. He mentioned the name of Duncan and gave me the telephone number of the firm, which I wrote upon the receipt. I asked Ernst if the things were his property, seeing the name on the instruments, and he produced a receipt dated April 28, which convinced me the things belonged to him, and I never bothered my head any more about it. I did not think I was getting a bargain when I bought the things. I have learned since that the first lot of instruments was invoiced at £57, but I did not have all the instruments mentioned in the first invoice. These portable volt meters are never used now. I have had 20 years' experience of this kind of business and put my own valuation upon the goods. In the parcel I received from the pawnbroker I found a long envelope containing a price list and also a postcard from Duncan to Ernst. I keep a lot of stuff in the warehouse. Your valuation and mine might differ, but I put the value of it at £200 or £300. I cannot, of course, keep everything on the stall. If customers ask me for anything I run across to the ware-house and fetch it. That occurs three or four times a day. We have in stock motors weighing 3 cwt. or 4 cwt., and engines and boilers weighing half a ton. We cannot expose those on a stall in the street. I shall have been working in Farringdon Road two years next January and I am there every day except Sundays. The goods in the warehouse can be seen when the warehouse door is open. I have never attempted to hide anything. With regard to many of

the instruments, if the police had been two or three days later they would have been scrap metal. I was just making up my mind to break them up. I buy lots of goods to break them up for metal; the turnover is quicker than waiting for the sale of the instruments. Metal is always ready money. I break up a number of General Post Office instruments and Gower-Bell telephones. I realise more by breaking them up than by keeping them for sale. I have broken upthousands of new lamps for the sake of the platinum. Buying such things is all chance work as regards sale. We cannot realise the fancy prices Lisle has spoken of for them and experience guided me in offering the figure of £4. The figure sounds small, but I have bought far more valuable things than these instruments for less money. In fact, we have an apparatus in our stores that cost £62; I gave 3s. for it; it is an electric light bath. We are asking £20 for it. I do not buy things unless they are at absolutely bottom price, because I have to make a living out of them. Pocket volt meters have taken the place of the portable meters carried with a strap; you would sell 100 pocket meters to one portable. As I have said, the circuit breakers I bought are now practically useless, as there are so very few private installations of electricity, whereas years ago all the biggish firms had their own installations. As to the polarised "Bell" line tester which Lisle spoke of I think 5s. would be a lot for it. I have bought at auctions instruments similar to those I bought of Ernst for the same price as I gave him. I believed Duncan to be the owner of the business. I knew nothing of the formation of the company. I say that Detective Wright did not caution me and say that he was a police officer. If he had said who he was in a proper manner I would have explained everything to him. I bought these things perfectly honestly and would not have touched them if I had had the slightest suspicion of them. The things had the name of the manufacturing firm on them and I should not have been such a fool as to expose them for sale if I had thought them suspicious.

Cross-examined. I repudiate the suggestion that I am a costermonger; I am an expert electrician with over 20 years' experience. The things I bought were not new things; some of them were not even made up. Pamington is my proper name. I used to trade as Wright Brothers. My brother assisted me, but the business was mine and he never had anything to do with it. I am known now as "Arthur Wright, manager to Mrs. Pamington." I have been known as Arthur Wright for years and years. I have never been known as "White." I do not know how it comes about that the invoice for the dynamo is made out in the name of "White"; I suppose it is a mistake in the spelling. I may possibly have told Duncan that I had a market for the iron-clad switches. I say all sorts of things to do business. I had had a customer inquiring at the stall for some high voltage ironclad switches; these of Mr. Duncan's are low voltage, which are not much used. I have disposed of some of the articles I bought of Ernst at a profit of a few shillings.

FRANCIS M. GORTON , representative of Messrs. Stevens, 38, King Street, Covent Garden, produced the firm's books and proved the

purchase at auction by prisoner Pamington on February 5, 1909, of ampere and volt meters, manufactured by Foxcroft and Duncan. The prices he gave for the instruments were similar to the prices paid by him to prisoner Ernst. Pamington had been a buyer at the auction rooms for years. Witness considered that the prices at which Pamington bought were reasonable, but as there was no reserve the things were, of course, disposed of to the highest bidder. Witness was not in a position to judge of the value of the cell testers, but in his opinion it would not be more than a few shillings each. The buyers attending such sales were mostly dealers, but when amateurs put in an appearance prices might be a little better. Pamington never bought very expensive goods.

WILLIAM EVERETT GLBSON , representing Percy Huddlestone, spoke to electrical instruments being purchased at auction by Pamington on April 6 at prices corresponding to those paid by Pamington to Ernst. The cell testers, he thought, might realise at auction 5s. or 6s. A fair price for the 3 in. brass case motor meters at a sale would be 2s. 6d. or 3s. The smaller ones would probably find no sale.

(Thursday, December 9.)

Verdict. All prisoners, Not guilty.

Mr. Mulligan stated that the prosecution would not proceed upon the other indictments and a formal verdict of "Not guilty" was returned.

The Common Serjeant, addressing Pamington, said the jury had been satisfied with his explanation in this case, but he would advise him to be careful in future about buying bargains from people actually engaged at a manufactory. Buying bargains at a low price at a sale was a different thing from buying bargains from a place where business is being carried on.

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