Offence: Deception > forgery
Verdict: Not Guilty
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London, 21 Oct. 1765.
No. 6945 R.
2 d. Count for uttering the same, on the said day and year, with intent to defraud the said Governor and Company.
Owen Gething . I am a clerk in the bank; I am in the drawing office; that is the office where the running cash of the merchants is kept; this draught was presented for payment on the 21st of October, 1765; I believe in the forenoon.
Q. Do you remember the person who presented it; should you know the man if you saw him?
Gething. He was a middle sized man; I cannot be positive to his person; I gave a ticket to the person for particular bank notes, according to his request, to the amount of the bill; I have here a memorandum of the bills.
Council for the prisoner. What did you take the memorandum from?
Gething. From another memorandum taken by another clerk.
Q. Where was the ticket put that you gave for the particular notes?
Gething. It was put on the file of course.
The draught read.
London, 21 Oct. 1765.
No. 6945 R.
Q. How do you know this is the draught that was presented for payment?
Gething. It has my mark upon it.
Q. What way is the account kept between gentlemen who keep cash at the bank?
Gething. There is an office called the drawing office; every gentleman that keeps cash at the bank, has a book of debtor and creditor, when he pays any money, it is of course entered by a proper officer. It is common to draw drafts upon printed checks which we give them.
Q. How are the checks delivered out?
Gething. We have them in books, a thousand in a book, which runs alphabetically; when one book is out, of course we begin the next letter; the checks are so cut out, that they tally with what is left; when any person wants checks they send their book to the discount office, and the proper officer delivers the checks, as they have occasion for them.
Gething. I do; the Bank had at the time of presenting the forged draught 25000 l. in cash on their account.
Q. What name is wrote upon it?
William Hodgkin . I am a teller at the Bank; (I paid these six bank-notes, producing them,) one for 1000 l. I paid, I think, on the 29th, four for 500 l. each, and one for 600 l. that I paid on the 30th; it was before one o'clock.
Q. To what sort of a person?
Hodgkin. He seemed to be an outlandish man. He did not seem to be very quick at telling money, he told one parcel of it which he took away, and said he should come again for the other; I told him we had a porter that could take it home for him; he said I am only going to the compting-house, and shall be back before you go to dinner; he came back again in about a quarter of an hour for the other money, which he took up without telling. I said, do not you tell it? he said, no; it is right enough, you are generally right.
Q. How much had he the first time?
Hodgkin. Sixteen hundred, and came again for the thousand.
Q. Do you think you should know the man again that you paid the money to?
Hodgkin. It is a long time ago; he wore his own hair, and spoke broken English.
Solomon Jones . I am in the discount office at the Bank - that is the office in which checks are delivered out; (takes the forged draught in his hand) this check, upon which this is drawn, was, with 29 more, delivered by me, on the 5th of October 1765, the numbers I delivered out were 6920 to 6950, both numbers inclusive.
Q. Was the bank-book produced at that time?
Q. Did you see any part of the inside of it?
Q. Do you believe that to be the Book? (shewing the witness a Bank book.)
Jones. I believe that to be the book.
Council. The word Messrs. is not upon the back.
Q. What sort of man was it that received the Checks?
Jones. A tall gentleman.
Q. What was the account you gave in the year 1765.
Jones. That as the person went out of the office, I said, there goes a genteel clerk.
Q. Did you ever go so far as to say you knew who the person was?
Jones. I said, at that time, that I thought it was the prisoner.
Court. Do you think so now?
Jones. I have no satisfactory reason to the contrary.
Q. After your information Mr. Vestenburgh was discharged?
Jones. He was so.
Q. Of whom did the partnership consist in the year 1765.
Q. What was the form of the house in their transactions with the bank?
Discour. It is the most like that of Mr. Olivier, but I do not believe it is his writing. I do not know whose it is.
Q. Who was the person that was usually sent from your house to the bank for checks?
Q. You say you think the signature is most like Mr. Olivier's. What reason have you to think it is not his draught?
Discour. Because the body of the draught is filled up with a hand-writing that I am a stranger to; and they never sign a draught, without the body hath been filled up by one of us.
Q. Do any of the clerks ever put the names of the form of the house?
Discour. No never.
Discour. I should have thought then that it was Mr. Olivier's hand-writing.
Q. What do you do with them, when you receive them?
Russia. I separate them with scissars, and then put them in the drawer.
Q. Had any person in the compting-house access to them then?
Q. Where was the company's book kept?
Russia. In a desk, and sometimes in the store-room, but still the clerks might have access to it; that I believe is the book that belonged to the house, I always took it with me when I went to receive any checks.
Council. Look at that draught, does the signature imitate Mr. Olivier's hand-writing, is it his hand-writing?
Russia. I rather think not, because the draught is filled up with another hand-writing; I took that account at the bank and a note for 500 l. the ballance they gave me in a note, that there was but 500 l. when I came back with this draught in the box, I said it was not Mr. Olivier's writing. Mr. Walpole being abroad at that time, I am certain he came back soon afterwards.
Q. How long had he been abroad before, a month or more?
Russia. Yes, I believe so.
Q. Can you tell when you left the book to be ballanced?
Russia. I think about the beginning of November.
Q. Your only reason for not supposing it to be Mr. Olivier's hand-writing is, the body of it was filled up by a stranger, and not by any body in the house?
Council for the Crown. Is it like his?
Russia. Mr. Olivier generally writes larger.
Q. What is your opinion on the signature without the body?
Russia. I could not take on me to swear; it really represents it very much.
Q. But what is your opinion, whether it is or is not, in truth, merely by looking at the signature?
Russia. It imitates it so much that I could not take upon me to say.
Council for the Prisoner. Then you had no other reason, but only it's being filled up with another hand, then nor now?
Q. Did you, on the suspicions you entertained of this draught, take any account of the checks, drawn or undrawn, and compare them with the checks you had fetched from the bank?
Russia. I saw several checks in the drawer not used, and compared them with this, and this is a different letter and number from any I fetched; we looked immediately in the drawer they corresponded letter and number, but this was quite a different number.
Council for the Prisoner. Was it not customary to leave this bank-book at the Bank for a considerable time together?
Russia. Two or three days, perhaps, only to be balanced.
Council for the Prosecutor. But it was never left when you went for checks?
Q. to Jones. You said, you delivered the checks to a genteel man; is this witness the man?
Jones. No, he is not.
Q. You know this man Russia?
Jones. Yes; I have delivered to him checks. I have seen him there for checks.
Q. What were the checks you last delivered for Sir Joshua, previous to October?
Q. to Jewson. Have you any book of settlement of account with Sir Joshua, after the discovery of this imposition?
Jewson. At the bank we have.
I gave this ticket on the draught, being presented
Q. Were they signed in consequence of that paper?
Sabberton. Yes; and to the amount of this sum; we never examine the tickets, only sign the notes.
Q. to Jewson. I understand the Bank took credit for the 4500 l. paid on this draught.
Q. Does that book go to February?
Jewson. Yes; on the 22d of February, here is credit to Sir Joshua's account for 4500 l.
Q. Then the money was replaced, the Bank took it on themselves.
Jewson. It was repaid to Sir Joshua's account as appears by this book.
Council for the Prisoner. Do you know that was on account of this draught?
Jewson. I do not know that, that must go into a common cash account; from thence it goes into the drawing office.
Q. What date is that account?
Jewson. The 22d of February 1766.
Q. Do you know whether any money was paid that day by Sir Joshua?
Jewson. It does not appear so by the ledger.
Q. What did you make that entry from?
Jewson. The general cash book.
Q. Is that general cash book here?
Jewson. Yes; (produces it.)
Thomas Perryman . I was a waiter last January at the Antigallican coffee house, behind the 'Change. On Wednesday, the 15th of January last, about half past eight in the morning, one Mr. Wood came to the coffee house; he sent me to Mr. Walpole's, the banker in Lombard Street, for some checks, in the name of Mr. Oliver; the clerks said Mr. Oliver never sent for checks without a written order, unless he sent the book; and they refused to let me have any. I went back to Mr. Wood, and informed him of what the clerks had said, and desired he would send his name in writing: I gave him a slip of paper, and he wrote upon it - Oliver.
Council. You must not relate any thing that passed respecting Mr. Wood, but come immediately to what you know respecting the prisoner.
Perryman. Upon Wood's being detected in the forgery, Mr. Bourne, Mr. Walpole's partner, sent me to inform Sir Joshua Van Neck of it. A thought came into my head, that if I went to Mr. Wood's friends, it might be a means of saving his life, as well as what might happen here; accordingly I went to Mr. Vestenburgh; the servant told me he was not stiring; I told him, I must see Mr. Vestenburgh upon business of the utmost importance; the servant carried the message up to his master, and brought word down, that I must go up; I went into his bed chamber; he jumped up in his bed and rested upon his arm, and said, waiter, what is the matter! I said, Sir I am afraid Mr. Wood has committed a forgery; Mr. Vestenburgh said, it is impossible! my God, it cannot be! I said it appeared too plain; I said if you will come and give him an item in Dutch to destroy the draught, it may prevent the consequences; then I went to Sir Joshua's.
Q. Did Mr. Vestenburg go to the coffee house?
Perryman. I cannot tell.
Q. Did you ever see him at the coffee house afterwards?
Perryman. I cannot say I have, though he might come in and out.
Q. He came very often before I believe.
Perryman. Yes; sometimes two or three times a day.
Rev. Melchor Justus Vanhessen. The same day that Mr. Wood was taken up, Mr. Vestenburgh came to me at my apartments, No. 51, Threadneedle Street. I said what is the matter with you, you are so pale? he said he was frightned out of his wits, by a message from a waiter at the Antigallican coffee house; who told him that Wood had done a bad action, and that he was frightened for Wood; he said he had been at the coffee house; I asked him what he did there; did he speak to him? he said no; he asked me to interest myself in it; I said I would have nothing to do with such an affair, so begged to be excused; I told him I did not like Wood, and I wished he had never been acquainted with him; I said why do not you apply to his friends; he said he is your countryman, and you have a tender heart.
Q. Did he appear under any extraordinary agitation?
Vanhessen. No; he appeared pale. On the next day (Thursday) I was invited to dine at a certain Tavern in St. James's Street; I went in
Q. I believe you have known Mr. Vestenburg some years.
Vanhessen. About eight years.
Q. Were not Wood and he townsmen abroad?
Vanhessen. I believe so: I have heard them talk so long ago.
Q. What character does Mr. Vestenburg bear?
Vanhessen. As far as I know he is honest, and very charitably disposed.
Anthony Tenbrooke . Mr. Vestenburg called upon me at Mess. Muilman's compting house on the 15th of January, between nine and ten in the morning, and desired me to come to his house; I went the same day, when he told me, that Mr. Wood had forged a draught; I said I hoped it would turn out to be not true; I believe I said it was likely that this might revive the affair in 1765.
Q. Did any thing strike you at that time?
Tenbrooke. No; not till he was called for, and was missing, then, upon recollection. I thought I did observe a confusion; I thought he was not in his usual manner of behaviour; he seemed to be disturbed.
Q. Did you receive any letter from him?
Tenbrooke. Yes, and there was a letter enclosed to Mr. Wood. I threw them both into the fire, after Mr. Muller and I had read them.
Q. Had you any particular reasons for throwin them into the fire?
Tenbrooke. No; only that I would have no concern in so scandalous an affair?
John Hodges . On the 15th of January Mr. Vestenburg sent me a letter, desiring me to meet him at the Standard Tavern, which I did; he immediately spoke about Wood, how improperly he had acted; he seemed disappointed that my other brother and Mr. Vanbeffen were not presents from thence we went to the St. Alban's Tavern; we bespoke dinner there for the next day. Mr. Vestenburg went with us to our house at Islington, and staid there all night, as he had often done; we went to the St. Alban's the next day; the prisoner and my brother Nathaniel came together, and my brother Joseph and I went from the Change; and Mr. Vanheffen was there; the prisoner proposed going to Holland to Wood's father; we went from the tavern, to Mr. Vestenburgh's house in Austin Friars. I think a message was sent to order a post chaise in the Borough.
Q. I believe you was to be his correspondent while he was abroad.
Hodges. Yes; he had many disagreeable places to pass; we were to hear from him when he came to where he was to stay; he was to direct for us by agreement, by the name of Capt. James Shirley , at Garraway's coffee-house.
Q. In what name was you to direct to him?
Hodges. In his own name I suppose; no other was mentioned; he wrote two letters while we were at the St. Alban's Tavern, one to Mr. Wood and one to Mr. Tenbrooke; he desired to have them copied when he came to his house in Austin Friars; I copied part of them in his presence; I gave the copies up at the Mansion-House.
Hodges. He said going away at this particular time would cause suspicions that he was concerned in Wood's forgery, therefore he said if any suspicion should arise, probably the letters directed to his friends would be stopt.
Joseph Hodges . Upon my return home on Wednesday the 15th of January, I understood that Mr. Vestenburg was a bed at my house; I saw him the next morning at breakfast. I found there was an appointment to meet at the St. Alban's Tavern; my brother John, Mr. Vanheffen and myself went there; after dinner we talked off Mr. Wood's affairs; Mr. Vesteburgh said, he could not assist him with money, or to that purpose, but that he thought he could assist him essentially by seeing his parents.
Q. Was you or any of your brothers acquainted with Wood before this?
Q. Was any reason offered why he should go by Dover rather than Harwich?
Hodges. The winds were against his passage from Harwich.
Q. Do you know any thing of two letters having been wrote, and afterwards copied?
Hodges. I assisted, I believe, to take part of the copies.
Q. Please to look at these papers.
Hodges. These are the letters.
Copy of the Letter to A. Tenbrooke read.
Since last Wednesday's conversation about our acquaintance's distress, I have been thinking of what service I could be to him in his distress, and after advising and consulting several friends, I cannot think of a better method than I have taken: you will perceive I have taken in the inclosed letter, which I should be glad you would deliver to our friend. I am acquainted, that some of the Old Bailey solicitors are the most proper persons to be consulted in this matter, if 8 or 10. guineas should be wanting in that manner, I shall be accountable to you for that sum.
I shall see you as soon as possible, as I shall stay but a very short, time at Helvost.
I am, dear friend, your's, &c.
Pray mention nothing to Groneveld about it, you know why.
I am hardly recovered of my surprize of last Wednesday; unluckily I came a little too late to immediately assist you, however, I went directly to proper friends for advice, I did not meet with that success I expected; but, in the mean time, have neglected nothing for your good: my now pecunary circumstances exclude my being so forcibly your friend as I could wish, but I am determined to use the last effort of an old acquaintance and townsman. I have found from later information, that your case is far from being desperate, and though criminal, admits of many advantageous objections provided that you will take proper advice, which I hope you will by no means neglect: now as my affairs will not admit of my giving you any direct assistance with money, I acquaint you that I am gone over to your father to acquaint him verbally with your unfortunate circumstances, and persuade him to do all in his power to save you from this predicament, which I would have done by letter, did I not know what little attention he would have paid to it; this letter is under cover of Mr. Tenbrooke he was one of the first friends I spoke to about you, I make no doubt but he will be of service to you, at least, in recommending a capable person to assist you; I myself have frequently profited in my last troubles of his, and am persuaded his intentions are good. As soon as I see your father you shall hear from me, in the mean time, I hope my personal appearance for the good of his son, will have the desired effect on the heart of the father. May heaven afford you true courage, suitable to your present lamentable situation, and an happy extrication from it.
(It is read.)
"To the Cashier of the Bank of London,
"Neck, Bart. and Co. four thousand five hundred
"pounds, to replace the like sum drawn
"from their account by a draught, which they
"say was forged.
In consequence of this the money was paid.
The entry in the book corresponded with the above order.
The Honourable Thomas Walpole.
Council. Please to look at the signature to the draught, and inform the court, whether it is your's, Sir Joshua's, or Mr. Olivier's?
Mr. Walpole. It certainly is not mine, for I was abroad at that time; it is not Sir Joshua's; it is a strong resemblance of Mr. Olivier's, but I believe it is not his writing.
Q. Do you form your judgement that it is not Mr. Olivier's only from his signing larger?
Van Neck. Yes; and there was no object for that draught in all our business.
Q. It was enquired into in 1765 I believe, and the unhappy man at the bar, though he
Q. You gave him a certificate, signed by yourself, I believe, when he left your house?
Van Neck. He came to me at my house, at Putney, he complained of having been discharged by Mr. Olivier, and desired me to give him a character, which on account of his having lain under these imputations, I gave him fuller than usual.
Q. Please to look at that paper.
Van Neck. The signature to it is mine.
Q. Is that your hand-writing, or do you believe it to be the hand-writing of Sir Joshua or Mr. Walpole?
Olivier. Certainly it is not my hand-writing, and I verily believe it not to be the handwriting of Sir Joshua, nor Mr. Walpole.
Q. You do not give your clerk any authority to sign your name?
Olivier. No; none of the house.
Council for the Crown. My Lord, we will read a letter Mr. Hodges received from the prisoner, by the fictitious name of Shirley. (The letter shewn to Mr. Hodges.)
Q. Do you believe that to be the prisoner's hand-writing?
Hodges. I believe it is; I am acquainted with his hand-writing.
The Letter read.
I arrived at Dover at 2 o'clock I had a most terrible cold night and a great snow if I had set out from London at 4 in the afternoon it's likely thro' the darkness I should have been burryed under it on this side Canterburry The Boat cannot possibly set of to night but are in hopes of tomorrow morning if the weather is in Flanders as here I make a doubt if I can get a cross the country in 8 days if at all for in same places no stages can go at least by way of Dunkirk with this snow that one is obliged to go amasing way about or walk a dozen or 2 miles You cannot write to me but by next Tuesday's post I write the direction at bottom it will be very difficult to make your letters meet us with any regularity as it is impossible for me to calculate the time I shall be at any particular places however this first Letter from you I shall take care to receive I shall write you further by the first opportunity the Boat is waiting for my Letter Adieu my Dear friend and remember me to all friends - God bless you.
Mr. Russell. I was employed by the governor of the Bank to pursue the prisoner; I apprehended him at Dover. The landlord of the City of London inn, gave me this Letter (producing it) at the time when I took the prisoner.
- Payne. I delivered a letter to Mr. Russell, that was left at the bar by the prisoner, being too late for the day's post.
Friday 6 oClock
Just a little before 3 oClock I wrote you a few lines since I recollect the P. S. was forgot however it happens not to be of any material consequence as this will reach you a Monday and in course time enough for Tuesday Evening to prevent nevertheless a second neglect it's as follows
To Mr. Jan Vander Voght in Swinshoosd at Dordreght Holland
in Case my Arrival should anticipate your Letter care shall be taken that it reaches me as soon as time and place will admit of. It's a pity we did not determine this point more exactly for in crossing the water and traversing the country it is impossible to six within three or four days my receiving any of your favours besides in France and Flanders and the Garrison'd Town of Holland names are punctually registered in and out in commerciall and large Towns I am too well known by somebody or another and consequently is resquing some disagreeable trouble therefore it will be necessary for me to endeavor to six upon another more convenient place mean time I am in great expectation of a circumstantial account till Tuesday 21 next
I am amazingly tired and am going to bed immediately we propose to go to morrow by times should any thing occur shall add it to the P. S. pray receive my acknowledgements of your and your familys friendship towards me kindly, and remember me to Mr. Vanbeffen and Mrs. Fielders and all enquiring friends Bon Seir Mons. Le Capitains & Mon Ami Jean.
I shall take the Liberty to trouble Mrs. Fr. - about some of my domestic Affairs mean time should Molly want some of her advice beg she will be kind enough to assist her.
Saturday morning 6 oClock the Captain has just call'd us we must be a board in an hours time adieu
Q. The prisoner was brought to your house after he was taken.
Payne. Yes; he had been at my house, and was gone on board the packet; he was brought back again; then he sent for me into a back room, and desired I would endeavour to let him escape, by putting him into some hole or place, that was his words; he said, he imagined Mr. Russell would not take him back with him; he said he observed Mr. Russell and the gentleman that came with him, wink and laugh at each other.
William Okeley . I acted as constable at the door of the City of London inn, while the prisoner was in the fore parlour; I saw him come on shore from the packet, with Mr. Russell and another gentleman; he went into the fore parlour at the city of London; there were the mayor, Mr. Russell, and several others present; I went with him to the vault; he came into the back parlour after Mr. Payne; he opened a door that went into the stable yard; I told him he must come this way, and so brought him back.
Q. to Payne. Had the prisoner been charged with any thing in particular?
Payne. I cannot tell.
Elias Hardy . I informed the governor of the bank of the purport of a conversation that I held with Thomas Wood , a prisoner in the Poultry Counter; he mentioned Hernpeck's knowing something of this matter, and gave me his name on a piece of paper, and said he lived at Amsterdam.
Q. to Jones. Where did you take him?
Jones. We took him out of the packet; he asked by what authority; I told him the sollicitor of the bank, and the mayor of Dover were there, and would shew them their authority; he went very quietly when he was brought on shore; Mr. Russell shewed him the warrant. The Mayor ordered the draw bridge down; and he was brought into the City of London.
Mr. Russell. When he was brought into the city of London inn, he desired to know what he was charged with; I told him I had a warrant; he desired it might be read; it was read to him. This is the warrant (producing it) (the warrant read; in which he was charged with having forged an order for the payment of 4500 on the account of Sir Joshua Van Neck and Co.)
Q. How long after you came in, was it before it was read?
Russell. About five minutes I believe, I was gone out to the necessary, and they let him go in my absence; that was the cause of my winking, for somebody to go after him; that was after reading the warrant to him.
Q. How long did you remain in England after this affair h appened?
Hernpeck. In the whole about a month.
Q. In what capacity was you in, in this country?
Hernpeck. I lived with Mr. Shield, a keeper of a boarding school, at Islington, almost facing the church.
Q. Do you recollect ever seeing that draught before? (shewing him the forged draught.)
Hernpeck. I think so; I had a draught of 4500 l.
Q. Who was present when you received it, and where was it?
Hernpeck. That is impossible to remember; I received it of Thomas Wood , in the presence of John Vestenburgh ; they gave it me to go to the Bank, and receive bank notes for it. I cannot tell positively which gave me the directions. Thomas Wood went with me to the door of the Bank; I presented the bill to the clerks. I received a paper from them at the time I received this draught, with an account of what bank notes I was to receive for it: Wood I think gave it me. I got the notes the same as they ordered by that paper. I received to the amount of 4500 l.
Q. Where did you carry them to?
Hernpeck. To the best of my remembrance I carried them to Moorfields, to a certain tavern, called the Globe, to Mr. Wood and Vestenburgh, and delivered them the notes; which according to my remembrance was the whole sum. I went for it but once; but I fetched the money at two times. I did not meet Mr. Wood, and not knowing where to carry the money, I carried it to his lodgings, at an inn in Bishopsgate street. I went back again to the Bank, and on the second time of coming from the Bank I met Mr. Wood; and he conducted me to the Globe tavern, where I delivered the money; Mr. Vestenburgh was not present. I was desired to dine with them the same day, at the Queen's Arms, St. Paul's Church Yard. I
Q. to Mr. Hodges. Do you know the handwriting of that indorsement?
Hodges. I believe it is Mr. Vestenburgh's; I don't know the writing to the second indorsement.
Q. Did you receive the draft of Miulman and sons?
Hodges. In the course of four or five months, I received the remainder of the money, that was promised me to make up the 500 l. I was then in Holland, from Thomas Wood , partly from his own hands in Holland, and partly in bills.
Q. Did you settle any place on going over in Holland?
Hernpeck. No; I was there almost a year and a half before I settled in Holland. Wood and Vestenburgh desired that I should not settle; they said it was not yet time to settle, but that I should move about.
Q. I think you said before, there was an intimacy between Wood, you, and Vestenburgh.
Hernpeck. Yes, I came acquinted with the prisoner when Wood and I lodged in the same house, through the means of Wood.
Q. Was you in company with Vestenburgh and Wood after receiving the money in London?
Hernpeck. Two or three times we have been at the Globe Tavern. I went to Holland about the 5th or 6th of Nov. 1765. I received the money the day I left England.
Q. How long had you been in London at that time?
Q. Was you at the Bank before that morning?
Hernpeck No, only presenting the draft; to the best of my knowledge the draft was all paid in notes.
Q. When you went over to Holland, you say you moved several times?
Hernpeck. Yes; Wood desired me not to keep long in one place. I have been in England since that time, about 24 or 25 months ago. I had been once before, about three or four years ago. I came over with a gentleman as a companion, and staid about three or four weeks; but I was only two days in London, the rest in the country.
Q. What business was you then?
Hernpeck. I came over on account of my master, Mess. Labor and Deprona. I had been with them almost four years.
Q. What was the reason of your coming over the last time?
Hernpeck. The Bank pursued me in Holland; some of the Bank came to Mess. Labor and Deprona, and I agreed to come over. Sir Joshua Van Neck wrote me, that if I came over into England I should have a pardon.
Q. You knew when you carried this draught to the Bank it was forged.
Hernpeck. No; I did not then.
Hernpeck. Because I knew Vestenburg was at Sir Joshua's.
Q. At whose instance was it drawn?
Muilman. The letter says at the request of the prisoner; I cannot remember the circumstances of it myself.
Mr. Muilman (reads)
London, 1st Nov. 1765.
Q. Was that the prisoner?
Muilman. Yes; he paid us for it, it has passed through all our books.
Q. Do you know who that bill was delivered to.
Q. Then you can't say that Vestenburgh came for it?
Muilman. I can't be certain; but I think he did, from the peculiarity of the letter of advice, which I have a copy of.
Court. That cannot be read.
Q. Was Tenbrooke clerk to you in 1765?
Muilman. Yes; the writer of the bill is in Holland.
Q. to Tenbrooke. Do you remember the prisoner's applying to your house for a bill?
Tenbrooke. I don't remember any thing in particular of that bill; he had credit for 300 at our house at Amsterdam on an uncle of his.
- Shields. Hernpeck was an assistant with me; he left me on the 6th Nov. 1765, without any notice; I did not know of his going two or three days before he went; he said he had an estate left him, by a father or an uncle in Holland.
Mrs. Moore. Wood and Hernpeck lodged at my house. I have seen the prisoner come to Wood.
Q. Were Hernpeck and Wood intimate?
Moore. Yes, very intimate; they said they were of the same country.
I have only to say that I declare myself innocent of the crimes alledged against me. As to what is advanced, in regard to the respect I paid to Mr. Wood, in going over to Holland, it proceeded from friendship; we were born next door to each other, in a country town in Holland; you have heard what Mr. Hodges has said of what passed between us.
Council for the prisoner. My Lord, it may be proper to explain what is meant, where he desires no notice should be taken of his going to Holland for fear some disagreeable consequences should ensue.
For the Prisoner.
Q. to Mr. Hodges. Can you give the court a reason for Mr. Vestenburgh's conduct in that particular?
Mr. Hodges. He had had connections in the way of trade, with one Groneveil in Holland; and there is a dispute between them, so that if Vestenburgh had gone publickly to Holland, he would have been arrested; and if Groneveil had come over here, doubtless he would have been arrested.
Mr. Muilman. I believe he was perfectly right in not letting them know he was there.
Q. to Mr. Hodges. Was not Mr. Vestenburgh in good business at that time.
Q. Was he a man of extravagence or expence?
Hodges. No, far from it, and he was very well respected.
John Baldero , Esq; I have known the prisoner from January 1768. From January 1768 to February 1771, his business with me has been to the amount of 70 or 80,000 l. on the 22d of August 1770, he brought in one article the sum of 15,000 l. and on the 22d of that month, he was in cash 16520 l. he has frequently brought very large draughts, one in particular on the 28th of August, for 22180 l.
Council for the Crown. Was he not agent for those who were concerned in stock transactions?
Mr. Baldero. Most certainly.
Council for the prisoner. What is his general character?
Mr. Baldero. He always bore a fair character.
Council for the Crown. I observe your account drops in January 1771.
Mr. Baldero. I have done no business for him since.
Mr. Delevainston. I have known him, Mr. Vestenburg, from the latter end of the year 1765; he is a man of a general good character.
Rev. Mr. Williams. I have known him about seven years; he has an exceeding good character. I always took him to be a gentleman and a christian.
Mr. Miller. I have known him about eight years, He has an exceeding good character; he is a generous man and a true friend.
Mr. Boan. I have known him ten years; he bears an undeniable character.
March 20, 1766.
"Mr. John Vestenburgh , who has been in my house a full year, as book-keeper , intending to go to Holland, and being desirous of a character, I hereby declare, that I have found him honest in his conduct, and has principles of honor and ability in his post; so that I sincerely wish him success in all his undertakings."