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Decisions of the Superior Courts of New South Wales, 1788-1899

Anonymous (No 1) [1829] NSWSupC 6

felony attaint - married women's legal disabilities, wife of convict

Supreme Court of New South Wales

Trial, March 1829

Source: Australian, 6 March 1829

A novel point was raised in the Criminal Court, in the trial of a case of robbery.  The felony was committed on a woman --- and the property stolen was laid in her name, though a married woman.  It was contended by the opposing Counsel, that the property was wrongfully laid.  The Attorney-General, however, submitted that the property could not have been laid in the husband's name, he being, at the moment, as also, at the time of the commission of the robbery, a prisoner in the Gaol, under a conviction of felony, and sentenced to two years' imprisonment.

The Court said, that certainly this was a new point --- but it was one, on which, if on going through the case, it should be found to operate in the prisoner's favor --- he would, of course, receive its full benefit.  The question was, whether the prosecutrix, being a married woman, and the husband not a convict attaint, he having not been convicted of any capital felony, could be considered as placed in the situation of a servant entrusted with the other's property.  The party, however, was acquitted on the evidence.


Published by the Division of Law, Macquarie University