Page images
PDF
EPUB

“ tion, appointment, deputation, or resignation; and also if any
“ person or persons shall give or pay, or cause or procure to be
“ given or paid, any money, fee, gratuity, loan of money, reward
“ or profit, or make, or cause, or procure to be made, any pro-
“ mise, agreement, covenant, contract, bond, or assurance, or by
“ any way, means, or device, contract or agree, or give or pay,
“ or cause or procure to be given or paid, any money, fee, gra-
“tuity, loan of money, reward, or profit, for any solicitation,
“ petition, request, recommendation, or negociation whatever,
“ made or to be made, that shall in anywise touch, concern, or
“ relate to any nomination, appointment, or deputation to, or
“resignation of, any such office, commission, place, or employ-
“ ment as aforesaid, or for the obtaining or having obtained, di-
“ rectly or indirectly, the consent or consents, or voice or voices,
“ of any person or persons as aforesaid, to any such nomination,
“ appointment, deputation, or resignation ; and also if any per-
“son or persons shall, for or in expectation of gain, fee, gratuity, .
“ loan of money, reward, or profit, solicit, recommend, or nego-
“ciate, in any manner, for any person or persons, in any matter
“ that shall in anywise touch, concern, or relate to, any such
“ nomination, appointment, deputation, or resignation aforesaid,
“or for the obtaining, directly or indirectly, the consent or con-
“sents, or voice or voices, of any person or persons to any such
“ nomination, appointment, or deputation, or resignation afore-
“said, then and in every such case every such person, and also
“every person who shall wilfully and knowingly aid, abet, or
“ assist, such person therein, shall be deemed and adjudged
“ guilty of a misdemeanor.”

By the fifth section of the act, if any person shall open or keep 49 G. 3. c. 126. any house or place for the soliciting or negociating any business

any place for relating to vacancies in offices, &c. in or under any public depart- business relatment, or to the sale or purchase of such offices, or appointment to ing to such them, or resignation, transfer, or exchange of them, such offender,

of them such offendor traffic in of.

", fices, a misdeand every person aiding or assisting therein, is guilty of a misde- meanor. meanor. And by the sixth section any person advertising any 501. penalty on office, place, &c. or the name of any person as broker, &c. or advertising, printing any advertisement or proposal for such purposes, is liable &c. to a penalty of 501. There are, however, several exceptions from the provisions of Exceptions

iosione or annointments from this stathis statute. It does not extend to commissions or appointments

s tute of certain in the band of gentlemen pensioners, or in his Majesty's yeoman Offices, and alguard, or in the Marshalsea, or the Court of the King's Palace at so of commisWestminster; or to purchases and exchanges of commissions in

sions in his

Majesty's his Majesty's forces, at the regulated prices; or to any thing forces at the done in relation thereto by authorised regimental agents not ad- prices regulatvertising and not receiving money, &c. in that behalf. (d) But ed by regi

mental agents. officers receiving or paying, or agreeing to pay, more than the regulated prices, or paying agents for negociating, on conviction by a court martial, are to forfeit their commnissions, and be cashiered. (e)

(d) 49 Geo. 3. c. 126. s. 7.; and the in the battle-axe guards in Ireland. 53 Geo. 3.c. 54. excepts purchases, &c. (e) 49 Geo. 3. c. 126. s. 8. And the of any commissions or appointments commission is to be sold; and halt the

saleable.

Buying and Selling Ofices (BOOK 11. But persons And it is provided also, that every person who shall sell his selling com

:

commission in his M
commission in his Majesty's forces, and not continue to hold any

; more than the commission, and shall upon or in relation to such sale receive, regulated directly or indirectly, any money, &c. beyond the regulated price prices, are

mis- of the commission sold, and every person who shall aid or assist demeanor such person therein, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor. Further ex- This act contains further exceptions; and provides, that it shall ceptions as to not extend to any office excepted from the 5 and 6 Edw. 6. c. 16. offices excepted from 5 and Orco any once WHICH W

à or to any office which was legally saleable before the passing of 6 Edw. 6. c. this act, and in the gift of any person by virtue of any office of 16. and as to which such person is or shall be possessed under any patent or offices legally

appointment for his life; or to render invalid, or in any manner to affect, any promise, covenant, trust, &c. entered into or declared before the passing of this act, and which then was valid in law or

equity. (f) Deputations. With respect to deputations to offices, it is enacted, that the act 49 Geo. 3.

shall not extend to prevent or make void any deputation to any c. 126.

office, in any case in which it is lawful to appoint a deputy, or any agreement, &c. lawfully made in respect of any allowance or payment to such principal or deputy respectively, out of the fees or

profits of such office. (8) Annual pay- Annual reservations, charges, or payments, out of fees or proments out of fits of any office, to any person who shall have held such office, in the fees to any

any commission, or appointment of any person succeeding to such ly holding the office, and agreements, &c. for securing such reservations, charges, office.

or payments, are also excepted: provided that the amount of the reservations, &c. and the circumstances and reasons under which they shall have been permitted, shall be stated in the commission

or instrument of appointment of the successor. (h) Right of ap- The statute contains an enactment, that when the right, estate, pointment

or interest, of any person shall be forfeited under any of its proviwhen forfeited vests in the

sions, or the provisions of the 5 and 6 Edw. 6. c. 16. the right of king.

such appointment shall vest in and belong to the king. (0) Trial of

Offences against this act, or the 5 and 6 Edw. 6. c. 16. by any offences

governor, lieutenant-governor, or person having the chief command, committed abroad.

civil or military, in his Majesty's dominions, colonies, or plantations, or his secretary, may be prosecuted and determined in the Court of King's Bench at Westminster, in the same manner as any crime, &c. committed by any person holding a public employment abroad may be prosecuted under the provisions of the 42 Geo. 3.

c. 85. (K) Punishment of It is enacted also, that any person who shall commit in Scotland misdemeanors an

ors any misdemeanor against this act shall be liable to be punished by in Scotland.

fine and imprisonment, or by the one or the other of such punishments, as the judge or judges, before whom the offender shall be committed, may direct. (1)

produce, not exceeding 5001., to he paid contains an exception as to the masto the informer, and the remainder to ters, six clerks, and examiners, of the go to the king.

chancery in Ireland, till after the death (f) Id. S. 9.

&c. of the present possessors.
(g) 49 Geo. 3. c. 126. s. 10. And see (1) Id. S. 2.
ante, 151.

(k) Id. S. 14.
(h) Id. S. 11. The twelfth section (1) 49 Geo. 3. c. 126. s. 13,

[ocr errors]

By the 49 Geo. 3. c. 118. s. 3. if any person give or promise any 49 Geo. 3.

c. 118. s.3. office, place, or employment, upon any express contract or agree- Giv ment to procure, or endeavour to procure, the return of any person office, &c. to serve in Parliament, the person returned shall vacate his seat, for election and be incapacitated to serve during that Parliament for the same

purposes. place; and the person receiving the office, &c. shall forfeit it, be incapacitated for holding it, and shall forfeit 5001.: and any person holding any office under his Majesty, who shall give such office, appointment, or place, upon any such express contract or agreement, shall forfeit the sum of 10001. (m)

(m) See this act more at length in the subsequent Chapter on Bribery, p. 159, 160.

156

CHAPTER THE SIXTEENTH.

OF BRIBERY.

Cases of bribery.

Attempts to bribe.

BRIBERY is the receiving or offering any undue reward by or to any person whatsoever, whose ordinary profession or business relates to the administration of public justice, in order to influence his behaviour in office, and incline him to act contrary to the known rules of honesty and integrity. (a) And it seems that this offence will be committed by any person in an official situation, who shall corruptly use the power or interest of his place for rewards or promises : as in the case of one who was clerk to the agent for French prisoners of war, and indicted for taking bribes in order to procure the exchange of some of them out of their turn. (b) And bribery sometimes signifies the taking or giving of a reward for offices of a public nature. (c) Corrupt and illegal practices in giving rewards or making promises, in order to procure votes in the elections of members to serve in Parliament, are also denominated bribery, and punishable by common law, and by statute. (d) And the attempt to influence persons serving as jurymen corruptly to one side, by gifts or promises, (which, with other practices tending to influence a jury, will be considered in treating of the crime called embracery, (e) may be mentioned as a species of bribery.

The law abhors the least tendency to corruption; and upon the principle which has been already mentioned, of an attempt to commit even a misdemeanor, being itself a misdemeanor, (f) attempts to bribe, though unsuccessful, have in several cases been held to be criminal. Thus it is laid down generally, that if a party offers a bribe to a judge meaning to corrupt him in a case depending before him, and the Judge takes it not; yet this is an offence punishable by law in the party that offers it. (g) And it has been held to be a misdemeanor to attempt to bribe a cabinet minister, and a member of the privy council, to give the defendant an office in the colonies. (h) And an information was granted against a man for

(a) 3 Inst. 149. 1 Hawk. P. C. c. 67. 1338. 2 Geo. 2. c. 24. 49 Geo. 3. c. s. 2. 4 Blac. Com. 139.

118. (6) Rex v. Beale, E. T. 38 Geo. 3. (e) Post, Chap. xxi. cited in Rex v. Gibbs, 1 East. R. 183. (f) Ante, Book I. Chap. iii. p. 45. and see Rex u, Vaughan, 4 Burr. 2494, (g) 3 Inst. 147. Rex v. Vaughan, ante, 148, 149.

4 Burr. 2500. Anle, 148. (C) I Hawk. P. C. c. 67. s. 3. As to (h) Vaughan's case, 4 Burr. 2494. this species of bribery, see the pre- ante, 148, and see Rex v. Pollman and ceding Chapter

others, 2 Campb. 229. (d) Rex v. Pitt and another, 3 Burr.

their

promising money to a member of a corporation, to induce him to
vote for the election of a mayor. (C) An information also appears
to have been exhibited against a person for attempting by bribery
to influence a juryman in giving his verdict. (k)
The statutes relating to the customs and excise impose penalties, . Geg.

'S c. 108. s. 35. as well upon officers taking bribes as upon those who offer them Officers takThe 6 Geo. 4. c. 108, s. 35. enacts, that if any officer of the cus- ing bribes not toms, army, navy, or marines, duly authorized, and on full pay, to do their

**duty in relaor any other person employed by the commissioners of customs, tion to the shall make any collusive seizure, or shall deliver up, or agree to customs and deliver up, or not to seize any vessel or boat, or any goods liable excise, and

persons offerto forfeiture, or shall take any bribe, gratuity, recompence, or ing bribes to reward, for the neglect or non-performance of his duty, such officers to officer, &c. shall forfeit 5001, and be incapable of serving his

5 s duty, liable Majesty in any office whatever, civil or military: and every person to penalties. who shall give, or offer, or promise to give, any bribe, recompence, or reward to, or make any collusive agreement with, any such officer as aforesaid, to induce him in any way to neglect his duty, or to do, conceal, or connive at any act, whereby any of the provisions of any act of Parliament may be evaded, shall (whether the offer be accepted or performed or not,) forfeit five hundred pounds. (?)

Bribery at elections for members of parliament was always a Bribery at crime at common law, and consequently punishable by indictment elections for

members of or information :(m) but in order to enforce the common law, and parliament. because it had not been found sufficient to prevent the evil, considerable penalties have been imposed upon this offence by different statutes. The 7 & 8 W. 3. c. 7. s. 4. enacts, that all contracts, promises, 7 & 8 W. 3. C.

7. 8. 4. Conbonds, and securities to procure any return of any member to

tracts, &c. to serve in parliament, or any thing relating thereunto, shall be void; procure elecand that whoever makes or gives such contract, security, promise, tion void, and

persons makor bond, or any gift or reward, to procure a false or double return, po shall forfeit three hundred pounds. (n)

forfeit 3001. The statute 2 Geo. 2. c. 24. s. 7. enacts, “that if any person 2 Geo. 2. c. 24. “ who shall have, or claim to have, any right to vote in any elec- 5.7: Persons “tion of any member to serve in parliament, shall ask, receive, les

taking money, “ or take any money or other reward, by way of gift, loan, or or forbearing “ other device, or agree or contract for any money, gift, office, to vote, and

persons pro“ employment, or other reward whatsoever, to give his vote, or e “ to refuse or forbear to give his vote in any such election; or if to vote, or for“ any person by himself or any person employed by him, shall by bear to vote,

by any gift,&c. “any gift or reward, or by any promise, agreement, or security, forfeit 5002. “ for any gift or reward, corrupt or procure any person or per- and are dissons to give his or their vote or votes, or to forbear to give his abled to vote

(1) Plympton's case, 2 Ld. Raym. (n) One-third to the king, one-third 1377.

to the poor of the place concerned, (k) Young's case, cited in Rex v. and one-third to the informer, with Higgins, 2 East. R. 14. and 16. his costs, to be recovered by action or

(1) And see also 6 Geo. 4. c. 106. s. information. But if it appears to be 29.

a void election, an action for this pe(m) Rex v. Pitt and another, 3 Burr. nalty is not maintainable. 1 Hawk. 1335. by Lord Mansfield, C. J.

P. C. c. 67. s. 8. in the margin.

m

to

employment, or agree or coneward, by way of

« EelmineJätka »