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British Justice

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It is to be hoped that, amid tho excitemonts of a swelling canvass, Americana vill uot fail to observe tho picturesque act this country offers to their observa,ion, of four of the most prominent men f London lockcil np in prison. Tho vealthy and clistinguishod gentlemen in qucstiön foistod a fraudnlent company on tho public, aud having no starry banner undor which to shelter themselves, are taking the prosaic consequences. Chey conspired by a false qnotation, ased on repeated deposita of the same suni of money in a bank, summed up to seem like capital, to get the shares of he Eupion Gas Company on the Stock Sxohaüge, ho fraudulently evading the rules lald down for tho protection of tho public, and tbey havo lost the stake and roputation with ifc. The Judges hestated. A good many peoplo could not relieve that rach hichly-respcctable and well-connected gentiemon conld bo incarcorated like vulgar felons, and anticijated the infliction of finoR. When the listingwished peculators wero brought ip for sentence thcy woro iuclined to be jathetic. Mr. Joseph Aspinall, who ïas for somo timo paradcd hi ittyle, his carriages and horses, in the vicinity of lis country mansion, turncd out to be n ver wretched and poor person, -wliom the whitoeyed buys lately gazing on bis splendwr could not envy. Mr. Aspinall jJcadod that he was 54 year-i oí age, with a wife and twelve children, liad carried on business irreproachably ior thirty-nino years, was now rumod, aud his nged paaents, whom ho had hitherto supported, would havo to go to the workhouse, while he himself had latoly been living on the charity of liis frieuds. He brought medical cortifleatos to show that ho is suffering f rom two dangerous diseases. Ho denied fraudnlent iutentention, and subrnitted himsolf to tho. mercy of the court. Mr. Whyto dotailed that he had lost a valuable position as mflöiipter of a coal mine, which he had held for twenty years, and did not mean to advance his personal interests by the fra,ud. Mr. Kuocker ;iid he was not awaro of the fraud, had suffered irightfully, had lost his inconie of L1,400 a year - as general manager of the Midland and his wifo and iive childrcit M'erc nowaestitute. Dr. Muir íilso profosSed to have boen ignorant of what was going on, and he, too, was rnined. The counsel for these miserable men urged in mitigation of judgment that what they had dono had been done before on the Stock ExchangO with impunity ; but tbe suggeetion was not a happy one, the Lord Ohief Justice dry ij remarking that " it was quite true," and addiug a hint that it was iully time that it should bc made certain that it could not safely be tried again. Mr. Justioe Blackburn, the senior puisne Jndge, then proaounced tho senteuce. He gau by sayiug tbat tlio indictable coiijpiraey provecí airainst them before a ury was ptinisbable by irnprisonmont inil fine, or by eitlicr alono, at the dissretion of the Oourt ; but that they had 3ome to the conclusión that a fine would Qot be proper in this case, because such aperations were generally earried on for largo sums of money by men whom ordiuary üaes would not deter ; that einee they liad all declared themselves destitute, to fine thein, with imprisonment until the finos wore paid, might iuvolvc n itnunenso extensión of their jmprisonwent. They would, therefore, imp-risan thora without hard labor. " When a person," said the Judge, "whethcr he be rich or poor, commits a crime, we must punish him, notwithstanding the misery ifc may infliot upon Jiis family at the time, and the disgrace it may entail ast thom ofterward. Aspinall imd Knooker were then sentenced each to twolvo months' imprisonment ; Muir and "Whyte each to two months. Tlio lawyers for the crimináis beggcd for a suspension of the order until they could appeal. The application was refused. The tipstaff removed the eminent bankors, and they are now in Halloway Irison, with ampio leisure to iake their first lesson in plain living and high thinking. These sentences will have the best consequences. JEvcry honest man in Eugland feels safer to-day, and every wealthy rogue feels more insecure. It is a good deal to know that prison walls are not roserved for poor ragamuüins who steal pennies, but may also become familiar to well-dressed personages who bring ruin on thousands of famihes and dash about with fine equipages. Tho numbcr oí such has been getting unpleasantly large of late. " Josh " and " Gil " Ward are traming on tho Hudsoh for the pair-oarod race at Philado.lpliia in September. They walk eight and pull twelve miles a day, and eat beef, mutton, and esrgs. " Josh" speaks contomptucvisly of tile English stroke as one which he hp,s repeatedly beaten, and ridicnles tho idea that Gapt. Cook has imported the gonuine Eugliah metliod. Tho Yale stroke, he says, has been borrowcd from thti bargemen on the Thames.


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Michigan Argus