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This act of the 37 Geo. 3. c. 70. was only temporary: but, after having been continued from time to time by different statutes, was recently made perpetual (together with an act upon the same subject, passed at the same time in the parliament of Ireland,) by the 57 Geo. 3. c. 7.

By the statute 1 Geo. 1. c. 47. persons persuading or procuring soldiers to desert are subjected to a penalty, and under certain circumstances to imprisonment: and the late mutiny act, 6 Geo. 4. c. 5. s. 155., subjects persons so offending to punishment by fine

or imprisonment, or both. 1 G. 1. c. 47. The statute 1 Geo. 1. c. 47. enacts, that if any person (other persons per the

i than enlisted soldiers, against whom it is stated sufficient remedy soldiers to de- was already provided by law,) shall, in Great Britain, Ireland, sert, liable to Jersey, or Guernsey, persuade or procure any soldier to desert, he penalty and hortoit AOL to bare Imprisonment, shall forfeit 401. to be recovered by any informer; and if he has

not property to that amount, or from the heinous circumstances of the crime it shall be thought proper, the court before whom

he is convicted shall imprison him, not exceeding six months. 6 G. 4. c. 5.

Sect. 155 of the 6 G. 4. c. 5. enacts that if any person or persons shall, in any part of His Majesty's dominions, directly or indirectly persuade or procure any soldier or soldiers in the service of his Majesty, his heirs or successors, to desert or leave such - service, every such person or persons so offending and being lawfully convicted, shall suffer such punishment by fine or imprisonment, or both, as the court before which the conviction may take place shall adjudge. The punishment of the pillory was added to the imprisonment by former mutiny acts, but a statute 56 Geo. 3. c. 138. enacts, that from the passing of that act judgment shall not be given and awarded against any person convicted of any offence, that such person do stand in or upon the pillory, except for the offences, of perjury and subornation of perjury, any law, statute, or usage to the contrary notwithstanding. The statute 1 Geo. 1. C. 47. also added the punishment of the pillory; and upon an information filed in the Court of King's Bench upon that statute, prior to the 56 Geo, 3. c. 138. and tried at the assizes, it was held that it was necessary, if the court awarded imprisonment in addition to the 401. penalty, to award the pillory also.(c) It was also decided in the same case, that the Court of King's Bench was the proper Court to award the punishment upon such information, and that it ought not to be awarded at the assizes where the trial and conviction took place. (d) The 6 Geo. 4. c. 5. s. 154. imposes'a pecuniary penalty on persons concealing de

serters. Consequences With respect to the consequences to the party deserting, it

o may be observed, that desertion in time of war was made a capital the party deserting.

crime by 18 Hen. 6. c. 19. enforced by 2 and 3 Edw. 6. c. 2. s. 6. repealed as to the felony by 1 M. sess. 1. c. 1. revived by 4 and 5 Ph. and M. c. 3. s. 9. and extended to mariners and gunners by 5 Eliz, c. 5. s. 27. But these statutes are now fallen into disuse, as well on account of the manner of retaining soldiers therein referred to being no longer adopted, as because, since the annual

of des

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acts for punishing mutiny and desertion, a more compendious and convenient system of military coercion has obtained. (e) The mutiny act, 6 Geo. 4. c. 5. s. 1., reciting that no man can be forejudged of life or limb, or subjected in time of peace to any kind of punishment within this realm by martial law, or in any other manner than by the judgment of his peers, and according to the known and established laws of the realm ; yet that nevertheless, it being requisite for retaining the forces in their duty that an exact discipline be observed, and that soldiers who shall mutiny, or stir up sedition, or desert, be brought to more exemplary and speedy punishment than the usual forms of law will allow, enacts, that if any officer or soldier shall, during the continuance of the act, commit any of the offences therein enumerated, amongst which is desertion, the offender shall suffer death, or such other punishment as shall be awarded by a court martial.

(e) i East. P. C. c. 2. s. 34. p. 93.




In treating shortly of this offence, we may consider, I. Of piracy at common law, and by statutes. II. Of the places in which the offence may be committed. III. Of the court by which it may be tried.


of Piracy at Common Law, and by Statutes. Piracy at The offence of piracy at common law consists in committing common law. those acts of robbery and depredation upon the high seas, which,

if committed upon land, would have amounted to felony there. (a) But it is no felony at common law, and it was only punishable by the civil law before the statute 28 Hen. 8. c. 15.; and this statute, though it makes the offence capital, and provides for the trial of it according to the course of the common law, by the king's special commission, does not make it a felony; therefore, a pardon of all

felonies generally does not extend to it. (b) Piracy by. The offence of piracy is also provided against by the enactments statutes. U and 2 w. of several statutes. The 11 and 12 W. 3. c. 7. s. 8. enacts, that 3. c. 7. s. 8. « if any of his Majesty's natural born subjects, or denizens of this as to acts done « kingdom, shall commit any piracy or robbery, or any act of hosunder the commission of “ tility against others his Majesty's subjects, upon the sea, under a foreign state. “ colour of any commission from any foreign prince or state, or 2. c. 30. as to

teo: “ pretence of authority from any person whatsoever, such offender piracy com

« and offenders shall be deemed, adjudged, and taken to be pirates, mitted under “ felons, and robbers ;” and being duly convicted thereof, accordan enemy's commission.

(a) 1 Hawk. P. C. c. 37. s. 4. 4 Blac blood, at least where the conviction Com. 72. 2 East. P. C. c. 17. S. 3. p. is before the Admiralty jurisdiction ; 796.

though the contrary is bolden by con(6) i Hawk. P. C. c. 37. s. 13. 3 siderable authority upon attainder beInst. 112. 2 East. P. C. c. 17. s. 3. p. fore commissioners, under the statute 796., where it is said that the offence of Hen. 8. does not extend to corruption of

ing to that act, or the statute 28 Hen. 8. c. 15. shall suffer such
pains of death, and loss of lands, goods, and chattels, as pirates,
&c. upon the seas ought to suffer. And the 18 Geo.2.c. 30. enacts,
" that all persons being natural born subjects or denizens of his
“Majesty, who during any war shall commit any hostilities upon
" the sea, or in any haven, river, creek, or place, where the admiral
“ or admirals have power, authority, or jurisdiction, against his
“ Majesty's subjects, by virtue or under colour of any commission
" from any of his Majesty's enemies, or shall be any other ways
" adherent, or giving aid or comfort to his Majesty's enemies upon
“the sea, or in any haven, river, creek, or place, where the admiral
" or admirals have power, authority, or jurisdiction, may be tried
“as pirates, felons, and robbers in the said court of Admiralty, on
“ship-board, or upon the land, in the same manner as persons
“guilty of piracy, felony, and robbery, are by the said act (c) di-
“rected to be tried ; and such persons being upon such trial con-
“victed thereof, shall suffer such pains of death, loss of lands, &c.
“ as any other pirates, felons, and robbers, ought, by virtue of the
"statute 11 and 12 W. 3. c. 7. or any other act, to suffer." (d)

The ninth section of the statute 11 and 12 W. 3. c. 7. enacts, Commanders, that “if any commander or master of any ship, or any seaman or

seamen, &c.

running away "mariner, shall, in any place where the admiral hath jurisdiction, with ship or “betray his trust, and turn pirate, enemy, or rebel; and piratically cargo, &c. “and feloniously run away with his or their ship or ships, or any of yntarile to “barge, boat, ordnance, ammunition, goods or merchandize; or pirates, or “ yield them up voluntarily to any pirate; or shall bring any confederating

with them; "seducing message from any pirate, enemy, or rebel; or consult, attempting to “combine, or confederate with, or attempt or endeavour to cor- corrupt the “rupt any commander, master, officer, or mariner, to yield up or crew

e persons put“ run away with any ship, goods or merchandizes, or turn pirates, ti " or go over to pirates; or if any person shall lay violent hands upon the “ on his commander, whereby to hinder him from fighting in de- commander. “fence of his ship, and goods committed to his trust, (e) or shall “confine his master, or make or endeavour to make a revolt in the “ship, he shall be adjudged, deemed, and taken to be a pirate, “ felon, and robber, and being convicted thereof according to the “ direction of this act, shall suffer death and loss of lands, goods, " and chattels, as pirates, felons, and robbers upon the seas, ought “to suffer."

By the statute 8 Geo, 1. c. 24. s. 1. “in case any person or per- Forcibly en“sons belonging to any ship or vessel whatsoever, upon meeting

tering mer“any merchant ship or vessel on the high seas, or in any port, and destroying

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(c) II and 12 W. 3. c. 7.

(d) Section 2. contains a proviso that any person tried and acquitted, or convicted according to the act, shall not be liable to be indicted, &c. again in Great Britain or elsewhere, for the same crime or fact as high treason. But by s. 3. the act is not to prevent any offender, who shall not be tried according thereto, from being tried for high treason within this realm, according to the stat, 28 Hen. 8. c. 15.

(e) This last provision is similar to one in the stat. 22 and 23 Car. 2. c. 11. s. 9. which enacts generally, that such an offender shall suffer death as a felon; but does not specify any mode by which he is to be tried. This statute of Car. 2. contains also some provisions as to yielding without fightiog, and as to mariners declining or refusing to fight and defend the ship when commanded by the master.


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goods, 8 Geo. “ haven, or creek whatsoever, shall forcibly board or enter into

“ such ship or vessel ; and though they do not seize or carry off made perpetual by 2 6 such ship or vessel, shall throw overboard or destroy any part of Geo. 2. c. 28. “the goods or merchandizes belonging to such ship or vessel; the s. 7.

“ person or persons guilty thereof, shall in all respects be deemed

“ and punished as pirates as aforesaid.” Trading with: The same statute of Geo. 1. s. 1. enacts also, that “if any compirates, fur

*6 mander or master of any ship or vessel, or any other person or

$6 mander nishing them with ammuni- “ persons, shall anywise trade with any pirate by truck, barter, tion, &c. com• 5 exchange, or in any other manner, or shall furnish any pirate,

core “ felon, or robber upon the seas, with any ammunition, provision, responding with them, “ or stores of any kind; or shall fit out any ship or vessel know. &c. 8 Geo. 1. “ ingly, and with a design to trade with, or supply, or correspond

« with any pirate, felon, or robber upon the seas; or if any person ~ or persons shall any ways consult, combine, confederate, or cor“ respond with any pirate, felon, or robber on the seas, knowing « him to be guilty of any such piracy, felony, or robbery, every “ such offender and offenders shall be deemed and adjudged guilty “ of piracy, felony, and robbery.” The act further provides, that every offender convicted of any piracy, felony, or robbery, by virtue

of the act shall not be admitted to have the benefit of clergy. (f): Ransoming The statute 32 Geo. 2. c. 25. s. 12. provides that in case any illegally neu

commander of a private ship or vessel of war duly commissioned tral ships which have by the 29 Geo. 2.c. 34. or that act, shall agree with any commander been made or other person belonging to any neutral or other ship or vessel prize, 32 Geo. 2. c. 25. s. 12.

(except those of his Majesty's declared enemies) for the ransom of any such neutral or other ship or vessel, or the cargo, after the same has been taken as a prize; and shall in pursuance of such agreement quit, set at liberty, or discharge, any such prize, instead of bringing it into some port of his Majesty's dominions; such

offender shall be deemed and adjudged guilty of piracy, felony, and

. robbery, and shall suffer death. (g) Dealing in By a late statute 5 Geo. 4. c. 113. dealing in slaves upon the slaves on the high seas, or in any haven, &c. where the admiral has jurisdiction, high seas, 5 Geo. 4. c. i3. except as by that act is permitted, is made piracy, felony, and rob

bery, and the offenders made punishable as pirates, felons, and

robbers npon the seas. (-) Cases of Prior to these statutes (except the statute of Hen. 8.) the folpiracy.

lowing case was decided upon the subject of piracy. Several mariners on board a ship lying near the Groyne seized the captain, he not agreeing with them; and, having put him on shore, carried away the ship, and afterwards committed several piracies. This

(f) S. 4. and by s. 2. every vessel question is made whether this act is fitted out to trade, &c. with pirates, still in force in 1 East. P. C. c. 17. s. 7. and also the goods, shall be forfeited, p. 801. The statute 22 Geo. 3. c. 25, half to the crown and half to the in- prohibits ransoming any ship belongformer. Offenders against this acting to any subject of his Majesty, or are to be tried aecording to the 28 goods on board the same which shall Hen. 8. c. 15. and 11 and 12 W. 3. c. 7. be captured by the subjects of any

(g) Section 13. allows contraband state at war with his Majesty, or by goods to be taken from a neutral ves- any persons committing hostilities sel, liable only to the forfeiture of against his Majesty's subjects. such goods, and that thereupon the (z) See post, Chap. xviii. Of dealing neutral vessel may be discharged. A in slaves.

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