Old Bailey Proceedings Online (www.oldbaileyonline.org, version 8.0, 07 December 2023), January 1816, trial of ANTHONY M'KENROTT (t18160110-45).

ANTHONY M'KENROTT, Deception > forgery, 10th January 1816.

211. ANTHONY M'KENROTT was indicted for that he, on the 22d of July last , feloniously did falsely make, forge, and counterfeit, and did cause and procure to be falsely made, forged, and counterfeited, and willingly did act and assist in the false making, forging, and counterfeiting, a certain bill of exchange , the tenor of which is as follows: that is to say,

NEVIS, the 21st day of April, 1815. For 800l.

At sixty days after sight pay this fourth of exchange, (first, second, and third not paid), to the order of JOHN DOUGAN , Esq. Eight hundred pounds.

Value received. Which place to account of



In London.

with intent to defraud Arthur Clarance .

N. B. The above Bill has the following acceptance across the face of it, made by the prisoner, "Accepted July 21st, 1815, payable at the Bank of England."

SIXTEEN OTHER COUNTS, varying the manner of laying the charge.

Mr. GURNEY, with his usual perspicuity, stated this case to the Jury; and then with his assistants, Messrs. RICHARDSON and MINCHIN, proceeded to substantiate the several facts by evidence.

Mr. ARTHUR CLARANCE , called and examined by Mr. RICHARDSON. I am a navy agent . I live at Adelphi House, Adam-street, Adelphi. I knew the prisoner in 1806, in the West Indies. I saw him at the latter end of 1812, or beginning of 1813. In the latter part of June last, I met him in the Strand; about the middle of July, he called at my office. He asked me what I was doing; I told him, and where my place of business was. This passed when I saw him in the Strand. I told him I had a good connexion, but wanted capital. He said, a friend of his had promised to assist him with a sum of money, and that if he did, he would embark 500l. in my concern for prize purchases. On the 22nd of July, he called at my office, and he produced two bills; he said that his friend Captain Halladay had sent him those two bills. Upon looking at the bills, I observed they were the prisoner's acceptances. I remarked to him, that it would appear singular that I should negociate these two bills, one for 1100l. and the other for 800l. they being his acceptances. He said, he had received them from Captain Halladay , to whom he had formerly rendered essential services in the West Indies; and that if I negociated them I might invest 1000l. in joint purchases, 500l. on his account, as his proportion, and 500l. as mine, for which I was to pay interest. I asked him, how he was to provide for these bills when they became due. He replied, that Mr. Forbes, the drawer of the bills, would ship home colonial produce to cover the amount. He gave as a reference to the validity of the bills Messrs. Manning and Anderton, of Princes-street, near the Bank, and also Messrs. Smyth, Payne, and Smyth, on whom I waited; they vouched generally for the validity of the bills; both bills were indorsed with the name of " John Dougan ." I told him the money would not be of any use in my concern, if it was to be drawn out at the expiration of the two months, to provide for these bills; his reply to that was, that Mr. Forbes would ship home colonial produce to provide for these bills. After having made inquiries respecting the bills, and having received satisfactory answers I waited on the prisoner at his lodging, at 53, Tower-street. I then asked him, what reply I should make to a question which might be proposed to me-How I came possessed of the bills? he said, I might make use of Captain Halladay 's name, with his sanction. The bills had been delivered to me at my office, and remained in my possession. On Sunday the 23rd of July, (the next day), after I had waited on the prisoner, I went to Portsmouth by the coach, taking the bills with me. I arrived there in the evening, and went to Mr. Huish's, at 28, High-street, Portsmouth; Mr. Huish is a navy agent; I had some connexions with him as such; I gave the bills to him to get them discounted; I myself indorsed them, either that evening or the next morning. I staid at Portsmouth about three days; I did not then received any discount. On my arrival in London I saw the prisoner. Before I received the proceeds of the bills, I told him what had transpired. I told him I had left the bills with Huish to get them discounted, and that I expected to hear the result every day. I saw him almost every day until I received the proceeds of the bills. I told him the purport of a letter that I had received from Huish, stating that he was surprised that Captain Halladay had not indorsed the bills. The prisoner said, he did not conceive Captain Halladay 's indorsement would add any weight to the bills, but if it was still wished, Captain Halladay was then at Liverpool, and he could procure his indorsement. I afterwards received the proceeds of the bills. On the 4th of August, I received a bill from Portsmouth for 800l. drawn by Messrs. Godwin and Co. on Messrs. Masterman, at one month, and transmitted to me by Huish, on account of the bills; and at various other times I received to the amount of 1500l. on account from Huish; we had a running account between us. At various times I received the full amount of the bills. I paid to the amount altogether of 880l. to the prisoner on account of these bills, which would become due on the 22nd of September. As the time approached for these bills coming to maturity, I saw the prisoner several times. I asked him whether the bills would be paid or not? his reply was, "that he had been disappointed in the shipment of colonial produce from Mr. Forbes, but Captain Halladay would take them up." I think about the 21st of September, the day before the bills became due, the prisoner left directions at my office that the bills should be presented at Messrs. Manning and Anderton's, and that instructions should be sent to Messrs. Masterman for that purpose. I understood that they were to be presented at Manning and Anderton's, for them to take them up on behalf of Mr. John Dougan ; I had understood that Manning and Andertons had transactions with Dougan; those instructions were given to Messrs. Masterman; I do not know of my own knowledge that the bills were presented at Messrs. Manning and Anderton, by Messrs. Mastermans. The prisoner afterwardssent me a letter upon the subject of these bills.(Letter put into the hand of witness.) That is the letter.

(Letter read, addressed to A. Clarance, Esq.)

" MY DEAR SIR, - I have the satisfaction to inform you that I am authorized by Messrs. Smyth, Payne, and Smyth to say, that 1500l. will be paid by them as soon as the bills are presented.

Signed, A. M'KINROTT."

I received this on the Monday after the 22d, when the bills were due. I saw the prisoner on the Tuesday or Wednesday afterwards. I should inform you, that I had first waited upon Messrs. Smyth, Payne, and Smyth, upon the subject of this letter. I applied to them to take up these bills; they positively refused to do it. I communicated that to the prisoner; I told him that Messrs, Smyth, Payne, and Smyth told us, that they never authorized him (the prisoner) to say, that they would take up the bills; and furthermore, that they were in doubt whether there was such a person as Mr. M'Kinrott, the acceptor; and that it appeared to me, from the tenour of their conversation, that they either doubted the existence of M'Kenrott, or that they thought the signature " John Dougan " was a forgery. We prevailed on the prisoner to go to Messrs. Smyth, Payne, and Smyth; he went out, and returned in about a quarter of an hour afterwards; he went out for that purpose. On his return, he said he had been there, and related a conversation that had passed between them. This conversation passed in Baker's coffeehouse, in Pope's-head-alley, which is not very far off Smyth, Payne, and Smyth's. Then we went together to Mr. Briggs, the solicitor, in Essex-street; we went together, Mr. Huish, the prisoner M'Kenrott, and I. Mr. Briggs then held the bills for Messrs Godwin and Co. We informed Mr. Briggs of the conversation that passed between the prisoner and Haynes; we told him what I related before, that Smyth, Payne, and Smyth, positively refused to pay the bills; we related generally what passed in company of the prisoner. Mr. Briggs said he had instructions to proceed against all parties; Mr. M'Kenrott requested time, which Mr. Briggs granted; there that conversation ended. The prisoner, a few days prior to his apprehension, which was on the 28th or 29th of November, said, if I would find the balance that was in my hand of about 600l. he would find the remainder to take the bills up. I replied, it was impossible then, as the money was vested in my business; but I would not have the smallest objection to relieve the balance when I received it. The day before the prisoner's apprehension, he called at my office in the Adelphi; at that time I had received intelligence respecting the bills; in about three minutes after that the prisoner's clerk called; I endeavoured to make an appointment with the prisoner's clerk, to meet the prisoner that evening; I however made an appointment to meet him the next morning at 10 o'clock, at the New England coffeehouse. In consequence of that I attended there the next morning at 10 o'clock, accompanied by my solicitor, Mr. Price, and Limbrick the officer. The prisoner was sitting in the coffee-room; I told Mr. Price that he was there; he and Limbrick went up and brought him down. The prisoner said, he conceived I used him excessively ill; I told him he could not accuse me of that, as placed in the situation in which I was, and hearing that the signature " John Dougan " was a forgery; I was compelled in my own defence to have him forthcoming. He replied, "If they are forgeries, I uttered them in the same state as I received them from Captain Halladay ." To which I replied, "If Captain Halladay be so material a witness in your favour inform me where he is, and I will start off this evening to bring him to you." To which proposal he made no reply. The prisoner then said, he had securities with himself to settle the bills with him, and wished to know whether it could be effected. I referred him to my solicitor, Mr. Price, and there the conversation ended. He was not taken into custody then; I was not present when he was given in charge. We walked on; I and Limbrick walked on, and the prisoner and Mr. Price followed us. We then went to Temple-bar, to the George coffee-house, where I left him in company with Limbrick, and never saw him afterwards until at Hatton-garden.

Cross-examined by Mr. Alley. It was in 1806 I first knew the prisoner in the West Indies; I considered him as deeply concerned in mercantile affairs; I know he was counected with Mr. Dougan; I took it for granted all was right; he give me these bills; he imposed no restraint on me in the manner I should dispose of them, either as to the manner or persons to whom. He did not hurry me to give him the money, but told me if I got the money I might invest 1000l. in my business. When I asked for a reference as to the validity of the bills, he referred me to Messrs. Manning and Anderton; Smyth, Payne, and Smyth, was the other house he referred me to; in these places they considered the bills as good and genuine. I told him that I told Huish to satisfy himself about the bills; he was aware that every possible inquiry was making, to ascertain whether the bills were valid; he wrote down the names of Manning and Anderton, and Smyth, Payne, and Smyth. I afterwards gave him 800l.; he got the whole of it in about a month after the bills were delivered to me; the bills had about two months to go. He did not go away; he continued about; he went down to Plymouth about some idle mission to Buonaparte. He was at a sea-port town, and I remitted him money whilst he was there; that was about the 5th or 6th of August, and the bills were payable on the 22d of September. Afterwards, when I discovered that the bills were dishonoured, and that Smyth, Payne, and Smyth, had some conception that the bills were not valid, I told the prisoner of it, so that I possessed him of what had passed at Smyth's. I watched his countenance, on purpose to see if he betrayed any symptoms of guilt, and he betrayed none. I told Mr. Huish of it. Even after this he went to Briggs's, and there I repeated the conversation in his presence; and at last he said, if I could accommodate the remaining 600l. he would make up the rest.

Re-examined by Mr. Richards. It was six or seven weeks before the bill became due that he went to Plymouth.

Examined by the COURT. He told me to say that I received them from Captain Halladay, and he said Captain Halladay would provide for them.

Mr. HENRY HUISH , called and examined by Mr. MINCHIN. I reside at Portsmouth. I am acquained with Mr. Clarance, the last witness; he is my London agent; I am a navy agent. I saw him at Portsmouth in July; he brought down two bills, requesting me to cash them. (Bills produced to witness.) Those are the bills; I took them to my bankers,Messrs. Godwin and Co. requesting them to cash them; I requested them to send them to London, to inquire as to the respectability of the parties; they went to London, and an answer came, and I afterwards received the amount of them.

ANDREW BURNETT , called and examined by Mr. MINCHIN. I live at Southsea. I am acquainted with Mr. Huish in the way of business; I am a clerk in the house of Godwin and Co.; I received those bills from Mr. Huish, and passed them to his credit. Mr. Thomas Andrews Minchin is a partner in that house.

Mr. THOMAS BRIGGS , called and examined by Mr. GURNEY. I am an attorney, and live in Essex-street, in the Strand. In the month of September last I received the bills of exchange in question from Messrs. Godwin and Co. at Portsmouth, to apply to the parties for payment, and if they were not paid, I was to proceed against the parties at law. In pursuance of those my instructions, I applied to the prisoner, Mr. M'Kinrctt. Before he would have received my letter, he called upon me, in company with Mr. Clarence. The prisoner then stated, that Smyth, Payne, and Smyth, would take up the bills, for the honour of the indorser John Dougan . I informed him that that was not the fact, for I had already made application to Smyth, Payne, and Smyth, for that purpose; which I had done that day at one o'clock. I was induced to go to Messrs. Smyth, Payne, and Smyth, by a letter which Mr. Huish brought to me (Letter put into the hand of witness.) That is the letter. I informed the prisoner that Smyth, Payne, and Co. were excessively indignant at their name being made use of. In that letter the prisoner stated that Smyth, Payne, and Smyth, had authorised him to say that they would pay the bills on their being presented. The prisoner said there must be some mistake, for that Smyth, Payne, and Smyth, had plenty of money in their hands of John Dougan 's, and he was sure if they were again presented, and a proper representation made, they would be paid. At his particular request I consented again to present the bills, which I did, and met with a similar answer they refused to pay them. When I next saw the prisoner, I told him of the second refusal, and told him I should arrest him for the money; I would write into the country for the necessary affidavit to hold him to bail, and I desired him to refer me to his solicitor. He promised to take up the bills, and called almost every day with excuses of some kind or other. In the course of these interviews, I inquired why he expected Mr. Dougan to take up the bills, of which he himself was the acceptor? His reply was, "that great commercial transactions had passed between him and Mr. Dougan, and the matter could easily be settled between them; he said that great transactions had passed, and that consignments of colonial produce were to have been made to take up these bills; I cannot positively say whether he stated that the consignments were to be made to Mr. Dougan or Mr. Forbes, but to the best of my recollection I think he said Mr. Dougan. He also said that Mr. Dougan and he were then jointly concerned in a schooner or sloop of war; and he said, he would bring the documents or the register of this ship, as security for these bills. He called at my office on the 4th of October, and stated that he was ready to pay the bills, but urged me not to issue the writ against him. Looking over one of the clerk's desks, he observed his own name in the writ, which was a special original. As a proof of his disposition to pay, he took out of his pocket-book a 100l. note, and begged that I would take that; after some entreaty (it being so small a portion of the amount of the bills), I consented that he should leave it; he said, that great expences had been incurred in preparing the writ, and it would go towards the costs, in all events. I told him it might affect the liability of the other indorses, and therefore I would not take it in part payment of the bills. He said, he would come the next morning with the remainder of the money, if I would not issue the writ; I consented not to issue it before eleven the next morning, but on no payment being made, I thereupon issued it; and on the 5th October he was arrested. I believe he went to prison, and then justified bail in Court; I recollect opposing that bail; notice was given to me on the 7th, and I should think, by two days' notice, he would have got out about the 9th. The last sitting in term they were under terms to plead. Just before that last sitting, on the 23d November, he called upon me, and requested me not to proceed to trial until the last sitting, and promised faithfully to take up the bills. He stated, he was sure Mr. Dougan, upon his arrival, which he expected daily, would immediately direct Smyth, Payne, and Smyth, to take up the bills. I informed him that I had heard Mr. Dougan had arrived. He said, he presumed that he would not come to London directly, but go to Teignmouth, where he had a country residence; and he said that he himself would pay the money on the following Wednesday; he pledged himself most faithfully. I had been making a great many inquiries for witnesses to prove the handwritings of the drawer and indorser, and I readily granted a postponement of the trial, seemingly as a favour. He told me that Mr. Forbes was attorney-general of Tortala.

Cross-examined by Mr. Andrews. I first went to Smith and Co. by the direction of Clarance and Huish, upon their bringing me the letter. The prisoner was with me as early as the 26th, after the bills became due; I saw him continually until the 4th or 5th of October; I told him my purpose was to arrest him, and he even came to me. Conceiving he was a gentleman, I asked him who his solicitor was? and he said he would come any day I chose. I told him, the last time he came to me, that Mr. Dougan had arrived; and he told me where Mr. Dougan lived, and gave me the means of communicating with him. I think I heard it before, about an hour but however, the prisoner told me.

JAMES WILLIAM FRESHFIELD, Esq. attorney for the prosecution. I produce the release of Mr. John Dougan from all responsibility on these bills, made by Mr. Mitchin, one of the partners in the house of Godwin and Co. for the other partners.

Mr. Alley objected to this release, as the wording of it was in the plural number, "We release," &c. and it was only signed by one partner, Mr. Minchin.

Mr. Richardson, contra, stated, that it was impossible for Mr. Mitchin's partners to enforce payment of these bills without him; and therefore it was conclusive that he could release for them.

Mr. Alley. I am aware that one partner may bind another by parcel, but one cannot bind the others by deed; and this speaks in the plural number, "We, A. B. and C. do so and so," and then it is signed only by one.

Mr. Andrews, on the same side. This gentleman does not profess to have released for his other partners, it merely purports to be the act and deed of himself.

CHIEF BARON THOMPSON . This purports to be a release proceeding from all the partners. It is,"That we have, each and every of us, released," and therefore this proceeds from each and every of them, and is signed by one: therefore, surely it is the same as if they all signed. They, and each, and every of them have released. It seems to me to be so.

Mr. JOHN DOUGAN , called and examined by Mr. Richardson. I am a navy agent. In the year 1813 I was going to the West Indies, in pursuance of that my business. I had occasion for an interpreter; I advertised for that purpose, and the prisoner applied in consequence of that advertisement. He represented himself as having been in business at Liverpool, in partnership with a person named Routart, or Rouretart; that he had failed, and that he was an Austrian or Prussian by birth. A newspaper happened to be present, and he immediately, without hesitation, translated a passage, first into German, then French, then English, and proved to me that he was well skilled in languages. He referred me for his character to a gentleman named Mr. Slade, near Finsbury-square; in consequence I engaged him with a written engagement for two years, at 300l. a year. He continued in my employ to the period of that engagement, to the August of 1805, when I left the West Indies for England. I left England in May 1806 for the West Indies again, and went to Tortola, where I found the prisoner; I staid there till May 1808, when I returned to England; the prisoner was resident at Tortola while I was there. The next I heard of him was in 1809, by letter from another person. In consequence of what I heard, I wrote to my friends there, and desired my correspondent to pay 800 dollars towards paying his expenses home, and that he would pay a bill of 100l. down. The prisoner arrived in England in December 1809; I endeavoured to settle his affairs; his creditors said they had judgment against him. The last time I saw him was in 1812, just previous to my leaving England, in a lock-up-house. I proposed that the debt he owed me should be made over to his wife and children, and that I should apply to his creditors to give him 500l. and that in return he should give up his property to his creditors. This he refused to do; and I never saw him nor heard of him afterwards until my arrival here; I arrived in England on the 16th of November last, 1815. During the three years of my absence, I have never been either in Tortola or Nevis; I have never been at either of those places since 1808. I never authorised any person to make use of my name in bills of exchange. I know Mr. George Clarke Forbes very intimately; he was attorney-general of Tortola whilst I was there; I never had any dealings whatever with Mr. Forbes about such bills as these. I have had a great deal of business to do with Mr. Forbes, being a navy agent, and he being attorney-general; I am acquainted with his handwriting; I do not believe the signature" Geo. C. Forbes ," on the bill for 800l. to be his handwriting; Mr. Forbes writes a crabbed hand, and this is a very different hand; I have many letters and receipts from Mr. Forbes. Looking at the indorsement " John Dougan ," it is not my handwriting, nor by any means my way of signing; it is an up and down writing. There is on the top of the g a little round o, a little loop, which is never in my handwriting; the g is not united at the top; it does not join, all my g's join. In the formation of the D there is an upstroke; in my signatures, and I have examined a great number of them, I can't perceive a single one that has that. I never agreed to make any consignment of colonial produce to the prisoner, to meet any such bill as that; I never saw nor heard of the existence of that bill, until I came to England in November last. I was not in November last, nor at any other time, connected with the prisoner, in the ownership of any schooner or sloop of war. Upon my arrival in England, I landed at my own house at Teignmouth. A letter which came from the prisoner, and which was intended by him to reach me there, was sent after me to London. It is the prisoner's handwriting.

By the wish of the prisoner, the whole of this letter was read. We only give our readers the concluding paragraph, as the only part bearing on the case. It is dated from 37, Gower-street, Bedford-square, is addressed to John Dougan , Esq. Teignmouth, and is signed by the prisoner.

After congratulating him on his safe arrival in England, he writes, "formerly I was honoured with your friendship, so much so as to enable me, without counter security, to lay the foundation of a fortune, which a series of misfortunes has reduced. Under these circumstances, might I without too great presumption, on considerations consisting of of mortgages and deposits, ask your assistance to the amount of 1000l. for six months. Large as this request seems, it is but small comparatively with your wealth, and would relieve me from the grinding and ruinous calamities which oppress me."

I certainly had reason to reprove the prisoner once very severely for imitating my hand writing, and I told him the danger of it: that was when he was in my service. I never saw it.

Cross-examined by Mr. Adolphus. - When I wasin the West Indies the prisoner rendered me very considerable services, for which I remunerated him beyond his salary. I employed him in matters of privacy. He continued as Interpreter to the Court of Admiralty, after I left. There was no other person who understood the languages. I know afterwards that he went into business for himself. I afterwards heard of his distress, and the effect of that distress on his understanding; it went to the extent of an attempt on his life; that was the occasion of my writing to relieve him. When he arrived in England, I was convinced that the report I had heard was true; not only from seeing his throat, but from other appearances. That was when I saw him, and endeavoured to induce him to compound with his creditors. I believe he was put in custody and was superintended; and I thought, at my own expence, of putting him under restraint. He had trusted some Frenchmen in the West Indies, which was the occasion of his ruin.

Re-examined by Mr. Richardson. My intercourse continued with him a month or two before I left this country in 1812.

Q. What was the impression of your mind during the latter part of your intercourse with him, as to his family? - A. I wish you would not put that question; I am in a particular situation.

COURT. You are sworn to speak the truth, and the whole truth. - A. I thought his reason had returned; it is merely a matter of opinion. He appeared to be in possession of his senses; yet there was a wildness about him, and inconsistencies in his conduct. His not accepting the proposal I made to him of compounding with his creditors, looks like an act of insanity.

SAMUEL HICKS, called and examined by Mr.Minchin. I know Mr. Dougan. I was in his employment in the year 1807, at Tortola. I continued with him until 1811. I went again into his service in 1814, when I went to Halifax to him. I am acquainted with his handwriting. I look at the bill for 800l.; that name of John Dougan is not his handwriting. I am acquainted with Mr. George Clarke Forbes , the supposed drawer of the bill, and with his handwriting; I look at the signature of the bill " Geo. C. Forbes ;" to the best of my knowledge it is not his writing. I look at the body of the bill; I can't say whose handwriting it is; it has a strong resemblance to the writing of the prisoner, but I can't say as to the belief. The signing" Geo. C. Forbes " is very like M'Kinrott's handwriting.

Mr. WILLIAM FRY . I am acquainted with Mr. John Dougan , and his handwriting. I look at the indorsement of his name on the back of the bill for 800l.; that is not Mr. Dougan's handwriting.

Mr. PHILLIP PERRING , called and examined by Mr. RICHARDSON. I know Mr. Dougan, and his handwriting. I look at the indorsement in his name on the back of the bill for 800l.; it is not the handwriting of Mr. Dougan, nor is the indorsement on the bill for 700l.

WILLIAM CURTIS , Esq. I know Mr. Dougan, and his handwriting. I look at the indorsement on each of the bills in question, and I believe them not to be the handwriting of Mr. Dougan. There's a

THOMAS LATHAM , Esq. I am a merchant in London, and know Mr. George Clarke Forbes ; I have very large concerns both with him and his father; I have had transactions in business with him, which have given me a knowledge of his handwriting. I look at the two bills of exchange, and can take upon myself to say, that the signatures are very little like his handwriting; I can take upon myself to say, that they are not his handwriting; he writes the George and the Clarke at full length, That is a good mercantile hand, and he writes a kind of running hand, such as lawyers write. I am very clear those are not his signatures.

JOHN LIMBRICK . I am an officer of the Police-office, Hatton-garden, and apprehended the prisoner. On his person I found a great number of papers.(Two bills put into the hand of witness.) I found those two bills on his person, and marked them whilst they were in my possession. I searched his house in Gower-street on the same day, and found many papers at his house. (A letter put into the hand of witness.) I found that letter, with the words Tortola and John Dougan on it, just in the state they are now; I also found some blank forms for bills of exchange; the papers I found in his house were on a writing-table, in a back parlour. I was at the Police-office, Hatton-garden, when all these papers were claimed by the prisoner's attorney.

Cross-examined by Mr. Alley. I don't mean to say that he specifically claimed any paper in particular; but he merely wished for a sight of the papers generally. There were servants living in the house in Gower-street.

SAMUEL HICK . I first look at the two bills of exchange found on the prisoner's person; the one for 1100l. the other for 1400l. bearing date at Tortola, and indorsed John Dougan ; these indorsements of the name John Dougan are not Mr. Dougan's handwriting. I now look at the letter found at the prisoner's house; I look at the words "Tortola," written several times, and "sixty," and " John Dougan ," on that letter; I believe them to be the prisoner's handwriting.

Mr. John Dougan . I look at the indorsement on the bills for 1100l. and 1400l.; they are not my handwriting, but better imitations than I had seen before. I never saw these bills until after the prisoner was apprehended.

Cross-examined by Mr. Reynolds. I now look at the letter found at the prisoner's house; the " John Dougan " on that letter is not in the least like my handwriting.

JAMES STAUNTON . I am an engraver, and have the plate in my pocket, of which these bills are impressions. The bill for 800l. is a fourth bill of exchange; the word fourth is in print. I now look at the blanks for the first, second, and third bills of exchange; I have the plates in my pocket from which they were struck; the impressions of these plates are sold by my master, in Moorfields.

Mr. SIRR. I am a clerk of the Bank of England. On the 21st of July the prisoner had no account with the Bank of England; it was ordered to be closed by the Directors; there is still a small balance of 5l. to be drawn. (Forged bill put into the handof witness.) That bill was not paid by the Bank of England. My situation in the Bank is such, that I see every person who opens an account with the Bank; they are introduced to me to sign their names.

Q. by Mr. Gurney. Were you present when the prisoner opened his account, and gave in his signature - A. Yes.

Mr. Alley. My Lord, I am aware that the forgery of a bill of exchange without a stamp, at places within the jurisdiction of the laws of England is cognizable by those laws, in the same manner as any other forgery; but here is a bill, purporting to be drawn at Nevis, which now appears was made and forged in this country. Your Lordship recollects the case of Mr. Richard Phillips ; and I apprehend that that case is similar to the present. There a bill of exchange was drawn upon an Irish stamp, and purported, on the face of it, to be drawn in Ireland; but it subsequently appeared that it was drawn in this country upon an Irish stamp, and that invalidated the bill. I humbly conceive that this bill is under similar circumstances.

CHIEF BARON THOMPSON . Not for the purpose of forgery. There is the distinction, as I take it.

Mr. Gurney. Certainly; as a person shall not plead one crime in excuse for another.

(Forged bill put in and read.)

DEFENCE. The prisoner made a defence of some length, imputing this prosecution to a foul conspiracy, because he had some charges of felony and high treason to alledge against Mr. John Dougan.

DOCTOR COOMBE. I am a physician. The prisoner called upon me soon after his arrival in this country from Tortola; I can't say at that time whether he was really mad or not, but I found in conversation with him, that kind of oddness and quickness in his manner, that if I had previously known of his having been deranged, I should have thought that that derangement still continued. Soon after this, the family that I was acquainted with in Tortola arrived in England; from them I learned that he had been twice deranged. About two years after that, or not quite so much, I was sent for to the Cambridge coffee-house in Newman-street, where I found him in a perfect state of derangement. I then called on the late Doctor Simmons ; I think the prisoner was then perfectly mad. From that time down to the present, a period of five years, I have seen him off and on. His wife lay-in about three months ago, and then I visited her, and used to see him. I really should think that his madness has continued up to the present time.

Cross-examined by Mr. Gurney. I have no recollection whether I saw him in July last; from the different times that I saw him, I am of opinion that he was never a perfectly same man, down to the present time; I did not think it necessary to put him under any confinement; I have seen him in a lockup-house.

WILLIAM LEWIS KOCK . I am a merchant's clerk. I have known the prisoner for the last six years; indeed when I was but a boy. I saw him in 1809, after his return from Tortola. I first saw him at Plymouth, where I resided; I formed a sort of engagement with him to follow him up to London,where he intended to establish himself. I came to him, to the Cambridge coffee-house, in about ten days afterwards; I then conceived him decidedly deranged, from the incoherent questions he put to me on my arrival into the room; he would have a great number of candles lighted in his room; he talked of parties with the Austrian Ambassador and Mr. Percival; he was always talking of very great enterprises, where he had not even the means of paying the rent of the house. One day I offered him a snuff-box, on the cover of which was painted a Jew; on producing it, he accused me of having called him a Jew, and threatened to turn me out of the room. He remained there seven or eight days, and I removed him to the house of Mr. Scheffer, 178, Upper Thames-street; I continued there several months; I considered him as always labouring under mental derangement. He used to talk constantly of his being on trial, and he fancied himself under continement under some charge; under that impression he wrote a variety of letters. He used to walk about the house almost in a state of nakedness. His spirits varied considerably; to extreme dejection, but never to violence that I remember. He conceived a peculiar prejudice to Mrs. Scheffer, which he manifested by threatening her violently, and by the general crossness of his conduct towards her; she always treated him as he ought to be treated. At one time he accused me of owing him, some money, and when I made appear to him the incorrectness of what he stated, he challenged me to fight him. Four or five months he was quite calm to appearance, and we did not think it necessary to keep him locked up, and we let him out, not apprehending that he would do any mischief; but in the evening we ascertained that he had placed himself in the door-way of a shop, which he would not quit, and he was sent to the Poultry Compter; he threatened some violence to the officers. After that, he went from Mr. Scheffer's to the Horns Tavern, Doctors' Commons; I don't know how long he staid there. Thence he went to several private houses, but under arrest, I believe, from the Lords of Appeal. He after that went to Burder's, the sherifi's officer, at Grocer's-hall, in the Poultry; I believe he continued there twelve months. I had frequent opportunities of observing him whilst there; he was sometimes extremely agitated, and at other times appeared composed. My opinion with respect to his insanity always continued the same, and I have received letters from him which have strengthened that opinion. He told me in October last, that he had been agent for Buonaparte, and had superintended his general business in Europe. I knew of his going to Plymouth to subpocna Buonaparte, only by the newspapers.

Cross-examined by Mr. Richardson. He has been under no restraint on account of the state of his mind since he left Scheffer's, whom he left towards the close of 1810.

Mrs. SARAH SCHEFFER . I am the wife of Mr. John Scheffer ; we live now in Leman-street, Goodman's-fields. I know the prisoner at the bar, Mr. M'Kinrott. He came to live at our house on New-Years's day, 1809. He came from the Cambridge Coffee-house to us. Mr. Kock visited him at our house. He was not suffered to go out of the house, and was always locked up when I was at home by myself. He appeared to be very much deranged when he came to our house. I attended upon him myself. I discovered the state of his mind from the first evening. He was very indelicate in his conduct. He used to go about the house with nothing on but his shirt, and sometimes quite naked. He was constantly writing letters, and wanting me to go with them, to the Lord Mayor, and Sheriff's of London, and to the turnkey of Newgate; sometimes they were only directed. He used me very ill. He beat me very much, and got his hands round my neck to throttle me, because I desired him not to look over some private business of my husband's in the counting-house; he beat me with a book, which I got from him. I believe he used to be more so to me in particular, because I used to lock him up; unless I locked him up he would be always about the house, with two candles in his hands. He continued in this state, more or less, during the whole time that he was with us. I never changed my opinion; I always considered him deranged.

Cross-examined by Mr. Minchin. I cannot say I have seen him above twice since he left our house. Mr. Dougan took him away from our house.

JOHN BURDER . I am a sheriff's officer. The prisoner at the bar was brought to my custody about two years ago; he was in my custody about eleven months; he was brought to me by a Mr. Baker, who I believe is an officer of the Lords of the Appeal. He was not brought to me by process, out of any of the Courts at Westminster. Whilst he was with me, his conduct was very incoherent. He applied to me to lend him some money; I lent him 5l. upon bills of his own; when they became due they were not honoured, but he paid me that money afterwards. I was going to observe the conduct of the prisoner towards my servants; in one instance his throwing one of my servants on the fire. He thought himself highly offended because I refused to lend him a farther loan of 50l. In consequence of my refusing this, he came down from his room into my office, and expressed how much he disliked me above all other men that he had ever seen before. He received 3040l. before he left my house; he disposed of this money by paying the debts of the prisoners that were in my house, who were total strangers to him. I think that he was an insane man. He came to me in 1812. His paying the debts of the other prisoners was just before he left me. He sent me a letter one night, in the middle of the night, by the watchman. I don't mean to conclude that he was mad; I have handed that letter to the person who brought the prisoner to me. His breaking open the doors, and running up and down stairs with four lighted wax candles in his hands, for four or five nights running, I look upon as acts of insanity.

THOMAS BAKER. I apprehended the prisoner under an attachment of the Lords of Appeal, and handed him over to the last witness. I saw him several times whilst in custody; his conduct always appeared strange, from my first having him in custody. When I first had him in custody, I had him in a private lodging. From the observations I made of his conduct, I should really think he was not in his proper state of mind.

SARAH TRINDER . I lived servant with the prisoner in Judd-street, Somer's-town, in November 1812; he had his wife and family living with him: I continued to live with him eighteen or nineteen months. During the time I lived with him, from his conduct I think him perfectly deranged; I have seen him lie almost naked for hours together, in the room on the floor before the fire, and I have heard him say that he wished he had been a pig in the West Indies. He swore at the cat, and swore he would throw her on the fire. He used constantly to walk about in his shirt, and he would eat beef almost raw. I left him about June, 1814. After that I went to live at Hockton, a good way off.

ANN PEARCE . In the course of the last year I lived servant with the prisoner Mr. M'Kinrott. I went into his service on the 11th of September last, at 37, Gower-street, Bedford-square; I was living with him when he was apprehended on this charge. The first week I went there I was going to give notice to quit, on account of his strange behaviour, - by storming and raving, in a manner that I never saw any one do before. I was cooking for the family, and at times when I took any thing up to table, he would rave and storm, and one day he put his hand and his mouth to my ear, and holloa'd in such a way as almost to stun me; he did that more than once, and would likewise take a chair and beat the ground-dash it on the ground. He would go about the house with nothing on but his shirt and morning gown. He would come down in that state into the kitchen very often: sometimes for his tobacco. He had his regular supper at ten o'clock, and about one or two he would come down and eat rump steak almost raw; put it upon a bit of bread, and then go up stairs again. In my opinion, I don't think he was a man of sound mind at all.

Mr. JAMES ANDERSON , called and examined by Mr. Reynolds. I was formerly a West India planter at Tortola; I was acquainted with the prisoner there; I knew him in 1803, when he was clerk to Mr. Dougan. He was always a steady, active, stirring man. I came from the West Indies in 1807. I used frequently to meet him on my return loitering about Doctors' Commons. At these different times he used always to address me. His manner of addressing me always betrayed a great degree of incoherency, with a great appearance of wildness in his looks. He always appeared to have a despondency on his mind. I used to meet him after I returned to this country several years afterwards. I have always observed on these occasions, when he has stopped me, some inconsistency in his conduct. From that time I used frequently to meet him on Ludgate Hill, with books under his arm, apparently in the same mood, and I used then to avoid him. From these different opportunities I have had of observing his conduct, I am perfectly convinced ofhis derangement. I returned again from the West Indies about fifteen or sixteen months ago. I saw him two or three weeks previous to his apprehension. I had previously heard of his having obtained a subpoena for Buonaparte. Upon hearing so, I observed this poor man is in the same situation still. Seeing him on Ludgate Hill two or three weeks before his apprehension, I spoke to him from motives of curiosity. I discovered that his mind was in the same state that I had formerly believed it to be in.

Mr. Gurney. My Lord, I think I am bound to call Mr. Clarance and the other witnesses for the prosecution, who had an opportunity of observing the prisoner's conduct about this transaction.

Mr. ARTHUR CLARANCE , re-examined by Mr. Gurney. I have before given an account of the interviews I had with the prisoner; to me he appeared to have the perfect possession of his understanding. Respecting these bills, he always appeared in his right mind.

Cross-examined by Mr. Reynolds. The only part I thought rather strange in Mr. M'Kinrott's conduct, was his conversation about serving a subpoena on Buonaparte. From having belonged to the Northumberland myself, I knew that Buonaparte's evidence would be of no use to him. I know of his actually going to Plymouth for the purpose. I sent him down 50l. whilst he was there, the first time, and 200l. the next.

Re-examined by Mr. Gurney. I do not know whether his serving a subpoena on Buonaparte was a mere pretext to get him on shore.

Mr. HUISH, recalled by Mr. Richardson. I had only one accidental interview with the prisoner after the bills were dishonoured. I heard a conversation between Clarance and the prisoner, which might last for a quarter of an hour; in that conversation I did not perceive any derangement about the prisoner whatever.

Mr. BRIGGS, recalled by Mr. Minchin. I had about six interviews with the prisoner. He did not appear at all deranged to me. I have a letter (producing it) which he sent me, about his being arrested.

(Letter read, addressed to Mr. Briggs, and signed by the prisoner.)

"SIR, - Whilst I was trusting to the faith of your kind promises, your officers took me, and, refusing the common indulgence, brought me at once to the place, whence I now write. I do not doubt that they have deviated from their instructions, and under these circumstances, I flatter myself that you will not refuse my request of an interview, for the purpose of receiving my proposals.

"I am, Sir, your humble servant,


In all the various intercourse with him, he discovered a perfect possession of his mind.

Cross-examined by Mr. Reynolds. I had no other conversation with him but what related to these bills. I did not say any thing to him relating to himself.

Mr. SIRR, recalled by Mr. Richardson. The prisoner came to me to give his signature; I did not discover any derangement in his conduct.

Cross-examined by Mr. Adolphus. He produced his money, and signed his name like any other man.

THE COURT now summed up the whole of the evidence to the Jury, telling them that the first question would be whether the bill in question was a forgery, and whether the prisoner forged it, and uttered it knowing it to be so forged, and if they were satisfied that he did, then they would consider the defence that had been set up, and whether the prisoner, at the time of his forging and uttering the bill, was in such a state of mind as to be answerable for his conduct.


Upon the ground of Insanity .

Second Middlesex Jury, before Chief Baron Thompson .