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Colonial Cases

Minor cases 1869

The North-China Herald, 26 March 1869


March 24th 1869.

Before R. A. MOWAT, Esq.


Claim for $50; balance due on a promissory note.

H. Mills, sworn: - I am the proprietor of the Imperial Hotel.  I produce a promissory note signed by the defendant, dated January 7th, for $70.  Was paid $20 on account, the balance is unpaid.  I did not apply myself for payment, but believe my wife did.  It is defendant's signature that is to the note.

Judgment was entered for the plaintiff without costs.


The North-China Herald, 26 June 1869


The Criminal Sessions at the Supreme Court commenced on the 23rd inst., when one Mahomed was convicted of a large robbery of iron from Mr. Muirhead's foundry and was sentenced to twelve months hard labour.  On the following day another Indian was found guilty on a charge of stabbing and was sentenced to eighteen months hard labour.  It the civil side of the court there have been two cases of building contract which have occupied some days.


The North-China Herald, 4 September 1869


At a Naval Court of Enquiry into the loss of the Hamilla Mitchell, held on Thursday, the Master was acquitted from blame on the ground that the accident was occasioned by unknown currents which caused this vessel to drift on the Leucaoona Islands.  It was held, therefore, that there was no fault to be found with the navigation of the ship.

The convict George was executed on Tuesday morning, between 5 and 6 a.m., within the precincts of the British Consular gaol.  H.B.M. Consul, the Consular Chaplain, the police Magistrate, the Che-hsien, the Mixed Court Magistrate and one or two others only were present.


The North-China Herald, 18 September 1869

THE case of Chu Ngo Chun v. Lowe, heard during this week at the United States Consular Court, has again brought under discussion the subject of the reliability of evidence given by Chinese witnesses.  There can be no doubt that, whatever suspicions of combination there may have been, the Court could not have preferred the circumstantial evidence of the European witnesses for the defence to that of the seven or eight Chinese who all denied that any combination had existed.  The general question of value of native testimony is, however, one of great importance, and at the same time is beset with many difficulties.  The recent judgment of the Chief Judge of the Supreme Court applies strictly to the question of the admissibility of such testimony, and does not affect the question of how much reliance can be placed upon it in an ordinary way, and in what manner it should be dealt with, when a portion of it is found to be deceptive.  [Continues.] ...


The North-China Herald, 18 September 1869

A very admirable basis of decision with respect to the question of the dismissal of employes, was adopted by Mr. Whyte, in the case of Shannon v. the Hongkong, Canton and Macao Steamboat Company, in the Summary Court, on Thursday.  The grounds adopted by His honor were, that a series of comparatively small neglects would, when taken together, constitute such wilful neglect as, by law, will justify dismissal without payment of wages.  The common idea is, that a servant is perfectly safe so long as he steers clear of any flagrant neglect of duty, or of any gross insolence or insubordination; and, no doubt, if a case is based upon one act, that act must lie of such a nature.  Mr. Whye's view, however, certainly meets the common sense of the matter, as well as the spirit of the law with regard to it.


The North-China Herald, 9 October 1869


In the case brought in the U. S. Consular Court against the steamer Nautilus, the vessel which got adrift during the recent typhoon and came into collision with the Bezalect and other vessels, judgment was given in favour of the Nautilus.  The trial lasted three days.

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