RESIDENT MAGISTRATE’S COURT.
Monday, Jan. 12. (Before Mr. F. Guinness, R.M.) OBTAINING MONEY UNDER FALSE PRETENCES. Alexander Kelly was again brought up on this charge. The evidence in this case had chiefly been taken at a previous sitting, and the case had been adjourned to admit of the production of a witness. In the absence of Mr. Harris the defence was undertaken by Mr. Stringer. Accused, after beeiug cautioned made a statement. He said he met Mr. Blair in July last. Accused was then putting in a crop for himself some fourteen miles from Rakaia. After the crop was in he looked out for more land for cropping, as his team was idle. Shortly after ho had an offer of 150 acres at Cannon’s. Meantime the land had been leased by a man at Cficrtsey of Cannon, who bad let half of it to another party. Paton offered accused his half, and led him to believe the other party would let him have his share. Told Baton that Blair had offered to go in with accused if he took the whole lot. Saw Blair, who said he would go in. Went to Christchurch and saw Mr. Cannon. Took the whole of the land. Returned and took tfie ground. Blair and accused arranged about putting in a crop—Blair to find teams to put in his share and -licensed also to find a team. Two days later accused sent a team on to the ground, and Rickards, a farmer sent teams to do Blair’s portion. Ultimately arranged with Rickards to plough Blair’s 75 acres, accused to plough the same extent in return for Rickards. The three teams worked away until McKerrow and Co. asked for a lien over accused’s crop at Kyle. Should have stated that an offer was made by accused to Blair to divide the paddock or take it in one lot. Mann asked for a lieu over the crop as the Bank was pushing for security, but Mann did not then get the
lion. A few clays afterwards asked Blair if he would bo able to look after his share of the land, and ho replied that after paying Ifickards ho did not think he would have much money left. Told him Mann and Buchanan had promised further advances if any wore required. This was before the lien was given. Told Blair that if ho included Ins share of the ground in the lieu, would bo responsible for funds during the harvest, and a settleing up could he made when the grain was sold. Blair left everything to accused. Promised to sign the lieu the following day. Went to Christchurch to raise money the day after the conversation took place. A grain merchant advised doing without a lien till just before harvest, and arrangements could bo made to carry on dining that harvest. Came back to Rakaia the same night and signed the lien to Mann and M‘Kcrrow. Gave the lien to Mann as the Bank wanted security. Mann and M'Kcrrow prepare 1 the lien, and they were told that money was wanted for present purposes —about L4O or LSO. They said that would be all right if the lieu were signed. M'Kcrrow declined to be responsible for the L6O, and they went to the house together to see Mr. Mann, who promised the money next morning if accused signed the lien—the money to bo paid to accused’s account at the Bank. The lieu was consequently signed. M'Korrow said he was perfectly satisfied with the security. M'Korrow asked for a lien over the horses and- dray, but was refused. Next evening told Blair at the farm what had been done, and that they wanted a hill of sale over the horses after the lien had been signed. Blair said aensed had done right. Some days afterwards Rickards came to the farm to sec how things were doing, and accused told him ho had better give him a written agreement of paatnership, as he had no security, and accused asked Rickards, to witness the agreement. At this time accused had no lease of the ground though it had been paid for. Gave Blair a written agreement the day after the crop was in. A week later accused came to live at Ashburton, and nothing further was heard of the matter till Blair wanted to buy the wheat crop. George Rickard, farmer, knew both accused and Blair Remembered agreeing to plough land for Blair—Cameron’s section partly cropped by' Blair and Kelly. Went to plough in September. Knew they were putting the crop in together. Was to plough and harrow Blair’s land for 10s. an acre—there were 75 acres of it. Blair has paid part of the money, and is working out the remainder, which perhaps may bo done now. Agreed to help Kelly with the land, and did about 25 acres of ploughing. Heard a conversation on the ground between the two parties to the effect that they should put all the land in together and got a lien over it. Knew that Kelly gave a lien over the crop, but could not say when the knowledge was gained. Kelly said so himself. Counsel then addressed the Bench, and his Worship found accused guilty and sentenced him to one month’s hard labor. Notice of appeal was given.
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