F - P.
4th May 1698
Reference Numbert16980504-53

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F - P of St. Giles's in the fields , was Indicted for washing and diminishing two pieces of Gold call'd Guineas, on the 28th of February , with a sort of poisonous Liquor, intending to defraud his Majesty's Subjects . One of the Evidence deposed, that the Prisoner and he meeting accidentally at a Coffee-house in Pallmal, they had some Discourse relating to the Mathematicks: He told the Prisoner he had an excellent Receipt to make good Vineger, which he offered to sell to the Prisoner for the Benefit of his Servant, which the Prisoner refused; and after more Discourse the Prisoner desired him to visit him, which he did; and the Prisoner told him, he knew of an excellent Liquor that would diminish Guineas 15 or 20 d. each, without defacing the Characters; and that if they had a Banker to furnish them with Guineas, he could wash 500 a day: All which the Evidence declared to his Grace the Duke of Schomberg, who advised him to get a Banker, and accordingly he bespoke one; who seemingly engaged; and a Meeting being appointed in St. James's Park, the Matter was again discoursed, and agreed upon, and the Banker gave the Prisoner two Guineas to make an Experiment, which he did in presence of the Evidence, and took off each Guinea to the value of 4 s. and the Prisoner giving him the Guineas diminished, he delivered them to the Duke of Schomberg, and his Grace ordered him to bring them next day to Kensington, where his Majesty viewed them, and the Guineas were delivered to Mr. Secretary Vernon, upon which Order was given to secure the Prisoner. As to the Experiment, he deposed, that the Prisoner put the Guineas into Water on the Fire, and stirr'd them a pretty while; having weighed them both before the washing and after in the Evidence's Room in Deanstreet; and further deposed, that he bought the Druggs, &c. which were put into the Water by the Prisoners Order. Another deposed, that being acquainted with the Matter, and the Secret being enough to ruin the Nation, he was appointed to be at a Meeting with the Prisoner in St. James's Park, (where he told him of the Secret) and was chosen Banker, to supply him with Guineas; who told the Evidence, that if he could not furnish him with 400 Guineas a day. It would not be worth his while; and a little after he saw the two diminished Guineas, which he did not like, being too much diminished, on which the Prisoner condescended they should only be diminished to the value of 18 d. each, for the more easy covering the Cheat, and told the Evidence, that one of the Guineas he had washed might be exposed, but not the other. The Evidence further deposed, that he told them, he designed suddenly to go to France, when he would leave'em the Secret for their pains, they allowing him 30 l. per Month, which they were to remit thither; but in the mean time all the Profit while he staid here should be his own. The 2 Guineas were produced in Court, and swore to be the same the Prisoner diminished; one of them was 4 s. too light, and the other 3 s. 6 d. The Prisoner denied the Fact, and said, it was one of the Evidence that tried the Experiment: He call'd several to his Reputation, and some Witnesses to lessen the Credit of one of the Evidence, who said he had been guilty of endeavouring to suborn Witnesses to swear falsly against one Camelle. But the Evidence against the Prisoner being plain, and withal the Names of the Druggs to be used being writ in one of the Evidences Pocket books by the Prisoner's own Hand, which he owned in Court, the Jury brought him in Guilty of High Treason.

[Death. See summary.]

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