Thomas Bell

Evidence Type: Newspaper Report
18 January 1844

SUPREME COURT—CRIMINAL SIDE

GEORGE LUXFORD stood charged with having forged a certain receipt or acquittance, dated the 6th April, 1843, for the amount of £31 8s. 3d. purporting to be signed by THOMAS BELL, of Parramatta, and to be a receipt from him to the Colonial Storekeeper.

ROBERT LYNN, Colonial Barrack-master, stated, it was his duty to see that any articles belonging to the hospital requiring to be washed should be sent to the Factory, and that it was the duty of the Barrack serjeant to pay the amount of such washing to the Storekeeper of the Factory, and to take a receipt for the same, which receipt was returned by the Barrack-serjeant to witness.

THOMAS BELL deposed, that he was Storekeeper in the Factory at Parramatta on the 6th April, 1843. The signature to the document now produced was not in his handwriting.

ALEXANDER CAMERON stated, that he was Clerk of the Factory at Parramatta; the signature purporting to be his, as witness to the document, was not in his hand-writing. The money actually received in that month was £26 14s. 9d. for which amount witness believed that prisoner had been furnished with a receipt.

Prisoner in his defence said, that he had lost the original set of bills, and not knowing the exact amount of the receipt, he had drawn the receipt for that amount which he thought was correct, he was not aware that he had committed any fraud, he had only acted as he had done, in order to prevent the reprimand he expected for having lost the original bills.

His Honor in addressing the Jury observed, that the prisoner must at his age have been aware that he was not justified in affixing two names to any document without permission; the evidence intention of the forgery was to defraud the Government, and if persons would commit illegal acts even without fraudulent intentions, they must abide the consequences of their indiscretion.

The Jury without retiring returned a verdict of—Guilty. Prisoner was remanded for sentence.


See Original: “SUPREME COURT.—CRIMINAL SIDE TUESDAY, JANUARY 16, 1844,” The Australian (Sydney, NSW : 1824 – 1848), Thursday 18 January 1844, p.3

See also: “SUPREME COURT.—CRIMINAL SIDE,” The Australian (Sydney, NSW : 1824 – 1848), Tuesday 30 January 1844, p.2