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Colonial Cases

Ngaou v. Carr, 1860


Woo A Ngaou v. Carr

Consular Court, Shanghai
2 May 1860
Source: The North-China Herald, 5 May 1860



2nd May, 1860.


Before T. T. MEADOWS, Esq., H.M. Consul.

PLAINT. - My master is a Custom House Officer and he placed me on board a certain Ningpo boat to watch it.  Last night the Defendant struck me and pushed me into my sampan, and would not allow me to remain on board.

THE DEFENDANT denied the charge.

WILLIAM HODDER being duly sworn states: I am employed as tide Surveyor of the Custom House.  My business is to clear vessels and board the Ningpo boats.  I boarded the Wave, they said they had ballast.  I afterwards found cases ands casks; and so put the Plaintiff on board to watch.  Monday morning at half past even, I put him on board.  I went this morning to relieve him and he s aid that the Captain had been kicking him, ands wanted to turn him out; it proved to be the Defendant and not the Captain.

WOO-A-NGAOU, the Plaintiff being duly sworn states: - At about 5 yesterday evening I was ordered by my master to go on board.  As I was getting on board the boat, I was pushed back by the Defendant who struck me with his first and pushed me with his hand.  He only did this once.  I then said I came from the Custom House and he allowed me to go on board.  During the night or in the morning my master relieved me.  I was not struck during the night.  I was put on board by a foreign boat, but no foreigner was in it.  It belongs to the Custom House.  I was not ill treated during the night.  Defendant's kick on the breast did not inflict any wound.  Defendant was on deck at the time the boat got alongside.  He must have seen it coming up.

WILLIAM HODDER, re-examined. - Plaintiff went on board the Wave in my boat; it has been on the river some time.  It is a curiously built boat, not like a ship's boat.

DEFENDANT. - I was engaged on deck getting out the mast when the Plaintiff came alongside, I believe he had been on board before, but I did not notice him as I was not then in charge.  It was in joke that I pushed him back.  As soon as he said be belonged to the Custom House, I told him to come on board.  I am always good friend with the Chinamen and never ill treat them.

THE CONSUL remarked to the Defendant that even if he did not know the boat to belong to the Custom House, his act was wrong.  By custom, anyone might mount the deck of a vessel in harbor to make inquiries, just as anyone might ring at a door on shore; and many people would object to being joked with in that way.  If the Defendant repeated the offence, a severe penalty would be inflicted.


That Defendant pay a fine of $1 to the Queen.


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