Skip to Content

Colonial Cases

Minor Cases Siam

The Singapore Free Press & Mercantile Advertiser, 3 February 1893


(Bangkok Times.)

   A curious question lately arose in H.B.M. Consular Court, on the petition of a deceased British subject's widow, as to whether certain property which had been purchased in joint names should devolve to the relict according to the law of Siam, (this country being the deceased's domicile) or whether, on the other hand, it should be distributed according to either English or Mahommedan law.

   In this connection a very important case, decoded by the Privy Council of England, on an appeal from the Consular Court of Constantinople, was discussed, but did not affect the point in dispute.  The Court reserved judgment and the issue will be awaited with interest.


The Straits Times, 20 December 1894

   MR. GOTTE, a printer of Bangkok, is under sentence of imprisonment by the German Consular Court there to be in on the 20th instant.  He has been permitted by the German Consular authorities to rent a house for the purpose, the rent and other necessaries to be met by the prisoner, while the Consular authorities will undertake the surveillance of the prisoner.


The Singapore Free Press & Mercantile Advertiser, 16 June 1896

   On the 10th inst., in H.B.M. Consular Court at Bangkok the adjourned hearing of the claim preferred by Mr. Downie on behalf of Mrs. W. I. Van Cuylenberg, now in Singapore, for a declaration that the furniture and effects of the defunct Naval and Civil Club belonged to her, came on before Mr. Stringer.

   Mr. Teutsch, who appeared to oppose the claim, took the objection that Mr. Downie had no status, as he held no power of attorney from Mrs. Van Cuylenberg, and he also asked the court to hold against her inasmuch as, according to the evidence of her husband, she went away with a life policy for 5,000 rupees which was the property of the creditors.

   Mr. Downie urged that he had heretofore been recognised by the other side, and that, as a matter of fact, he held Mrs. Van Cuylenerg's letter authorising him to sell the property in dispute.  Mr. Downie then produced an affidavit sworn to by Mrs. Van Cuylenberg at Singapore, wherein she alleges that the property in question was purchased by her with her separate money.

   Mr. Teutsch applied for time to consider the affidavit, which was allowed. - Bangkok Paper.


The Straits Times, 4 September 1900

In a recent trade case before the United States Consular Court at Bangkok, a witness said that very often there was a profit of 200 per cent made there on bicycle accessories sold.


The Straits Times, 19 July 1910


   In the German Consular Court, at Bangkok, in June 11 Baron von Rudt resumed the inquiry into the circumstances connected with the grounding of the Dagmar at Koh Phra.  The evidence of the chief engineer and second officer was taken and the inquiry concluded.  These proceedings were in the interest of the insurance companies.

   The next day, however, the official inquiry on behalf of the Government was commenced.  The evidence will be the same as that already given with the addition of expert testimony.  The entire evidence will babe sent to Germany for the consideration of the Government official who deals with accidents and disasters at sea.


The Straits Times, 6 July 1911

   In the American Consular Court at Bangkok judgment has been delivered in a suit brought by the Borneo Co., Ltd., against Mr. C. G. Edwards for recovery of a sum of about $14,000.  The plaintiffs were awarded judgment for the full amount claimed.  Mr. S. Brighouse appeared for the plaintiff company, the defendant being unrepresented, and putting in no appearance.


The Straits Times, 10 January 1912



  The following is the judgment in the libel case brought by Major Ciccodicola and Mr. Allegri in the Italian Consular Court, Bangkok, says the Siam Observer.

   All accused, exception being made of Madame Clothilde Rossi, have been unable to prove their repeated accusations, slanders and defamations, which appeared in the Italian newspaper, Avanti, against Major Ciccodicola and Mr. Allegri and all those accusations have been found unjustified and unsupported.  The Italian Consular Court, therefore, in accordance with articles 393 and 11 of the Italian Penal Code, condemn:

Dr. Bossoni to 4 years and 4 months imprisonment and Fcs. 3,000 fine.

   Madame E. A. Bossoni to 4 years and 4 months and Fcs. 3,000 fine.

   G. Zoppeti, 2 years and 4 months, Fcs. 1,833 fine.

   Z. Rossi, 1 year 6 months, Fcs. 1,333 fine.

   L. Valaperta, 1 year, 20 days, Fcs. 1,000 fine and

   G. Lorenzini, alias Lorenzi, 1 year, Fcs. 1,000 fine.

Besides, the six accused have been condemned to pay all court fees in connection with the case and judgment, and the sum of Fcs. 20,000 to Major Ciccodicola and Fcs. 1,000 to Mr. Allegri for damages.   The court have ordered that the judgment in its entirety be published in three Italian newspapers, i.e., Avanti, Mribuna, Corriere della Sera.

   The Italian Consular Court was composed of H. E. the Marquis E. de la Penne, Italian Minister, President; Mr. S. Besso and Mr. C. Quadrelli, assessors; Mr. G. Bovo, Chancellor.


The Straits Times, 6 March 1912



   The Siam Observer of February 28 draws attention to a point raised in the Danish Consular Court at Bangkok by Mr. S. Brighouse in the case in which Mr. and Mrs. Sampson are claiming damages against the Siam Electricity Company is based on Article 41 of the agreement of November 9, 1901, between the Siamese government and the company.  The article in question is as follows:-

If any person or persons of Siamese nationality sustain any loss or damage by reason of any defect or want of repairs in any of the plant, rolling stock, or other property belonging to the Company, or by reason of any neglect or misconduct in the management, construction, laying or using of the said plant, stock or other property or any portion thereof, the same shall be made good by the  said Company and in any case in which the Company and the  said persons are unable to agree, the  said Company shall accept the International Court of Bangkok or such otter Court as may in future be instituted thereof as a permanent court of Arbitration to arbitrate upon claims for such loss or damage.  The decision of such Court of Arbitration shall be final and shall be effectual and binding upon the said Company, and in case of non-compliance on the part of the company with such decision for three months after such final decision has been nitrified to the Company, it shall be lawful for the Government to d enounce the termination of the present Agreement.

   Mr. Brighouse claims that under the Brito-Siamese Treaty of July 9, 1909, the term "person or persons of Siamese nationality" embraces British subjects, who according to this Treaty (Article 6) "shall enjoy throughout the whole extent of Siam the rights and privileges enjoyed by the natives of the country.   .   .   " and (1 Sec. 2 of the Jurisdiction Protocol) "The jurisdiction of the International Courts shall extend .  .  .  to all civil and commercial matters to which British subjects shall be parties."  Section 8 of the same Protocol states: "The right if evocation in the International Courts shall be exercised in accordance with the provisions of Article 8 of the Treaty of September 8, 1888."

   The point thus raised by Mr. Brighouse is an extremely interesting one, whose settlement will be awaited eagerly.


The Straits Times, 12 March 1912

   Telegraphic news has been received in Bangkok of the outcome of the appeal made in the High Court of Leipzig against the decision of the German Consular Court here in the famous steam plough case, says the Siam Observer.

   Messrs. Fritze and Braunger's appeal has been upheld and the judgment of the local court quashed.  The case was brought by Mr. Jurgens against the above names gentleman, and his claim was upheld. The famous plough has now been brought down from Klong Rangsit by Messrs. Behn, Meyer and Co., after great difficulty and will, we believe, be sold in Java.  The case aroused a great deal of local interest, not only among the friends of the contestants, but also among the general public, who were naturally interested in the career of the steam plough in Siam.


The Straits Times, 19 March 1912


   A sensational charge was made at Bangkok on March 12 as a result of a search of the steamer Donai by the Customs authorities.  Five revolvers and 262 cartridges which had not been declared were discovered, and instead of the customary Chinese sailor the chief engineer was the person to be charged in connection with the offence.

   The case will be heard before the French Consular Court.  The same day a further seizure was made on board the Donai.  In the safe in the Commissaire's cabin were found three Browning revolvers, seven pistols, nine magazines for Browning, eight tool sets, and 900 Browning cartridges.


The Straits Times, 19 June 1913


   In the French Consular Court at Bangkok, on June 9, Captain Bruiard, late of the Anjou, claimed certain money from the administrators of the vessel, out of the proceeds of the recent sale.  Mr. S. Brighouse appeared on behalf of the former owners, by whom plaintiff was engaged.  The claim amounts to Tls. 6,592 for passage from Europe and back, expenses in Bangkok and Saigon in connection with the vessel, two months' salary while the steamer was under repair, and salary for two periods of three months.  Most of the items were undisputed, the chief item in dispute being the passage to Bangkok and back.  It was pointed out by the court that under French law the owner of a vessel had to send a captain back to the port where he was registered.  The late owners gave evidence.  It transpired that the ship was sold by order of the French Consulate who now have the winding up of its affairs in hand.  Judgment was reserved.


The Straits Times, 30 January 1914



      An important decision in connection with the case in which Messrs. Guthrie and co., Ltd., of Singapore, sued Messrs. A. Diana and Co., of Bangkok, for alleged infringement of trade mark, was given by the Court of Appeal at Ancona on December 19.

   The first instance hearing took place at the Italian Consular Court of Bangkok some two years ago.  The case concerned a certain "elephant" trade marl on singlets imported by Messrs. Diana and Co. which Messrs. Guthrie and Co. claimed to be an imitation of their trade mark, elephant and palm gtree.  Plaintiff's mark was registered in several European countries, England excepted; while defendant's mark was registered, besides in Germany and other European countries, in Great Britain too.

   The judgment of the Italian Court in Bangkok found the two marks not similar, notwithstanding that both represented (though with different particulars as regard to the design, vignettes and position) an elephant.  The judgment in favour of Messrs. A. Diana and Co. acknowledged also the bona fides on the defendants' part.

   Messrs. Guthrie and Co. appealed in Acona and papers brought by this mail give particulars of the hearing concluded on December 19 in Ancona, with a judgment fully accepting the arguments of the defendants' counsel as regard to the jus agendi of the firm Guthrie and co,. gthe rihght of using national embelms as tarde marks, etc., etc., and ordering - with a confirmation of the sentence of this Consular Court - the appellants to pay costs, etc.

Counsel for Messrs. Diana and co. were the following: Dr. P. F .Erizzo, Dr. P. L. Erizzo and the Hon. Dari, ex-under Secretary of State for justice.

    Counsel for Messrs. Guthrie and Co.:  Prof. Amar of the Turin University, and the Hon. Morelli Gualtierotti, ex-under secretary of State for Justice.

   The operation of the judgment takes place according to the provisions of the Court of Appeal sentence which is to arrive by the next mail, states the Siam Observer of December 22.

Published by Centre for Comparative Law, History and Governance at Macquarie Law School