AN EXTRAORDINARY JUDGMENT.
To the Editor. Sir, —ln last night’s issue of the “ Ashburton Herald ” I see, under the heading of “Resident Magistrate’s Court,” a judgment delivered by Mr. Guinness, R.M., which, to say the least, is a very extraordinary one. Mr. Guinness is reported by the “ Herald ” to have said as follows :—“ I have therefore to say whether the evidence adduced discloses such a fraudulent misrepresentation as the law, as laid down in the above quotation, (referring to a quotation from a book called, ‘ Addison on Torts,’) seems to require. I am of opinion that the defendant made such a representation , on the truth of which plaintiff supplied certain goods,” etc. The italics are my own. Now, sir, after reading this it appeared to mo that Mr. Guinness was of opinion that the defendant in the case had made “a fraudulent misrepresentation as the law seems to require. ” I at once assumed, as I had a right to do, that Mr. Guinness came to this concl was to him sufficiently cogent evWßnce ; and I was prepared to see t&e judgment go in favor of the plaintiff. But, to my , utter amazement, I found the plaintiff was nonsuited with costs. Thinking I had read the judgment wrongly, I re-read it, only to find that it still stood as before, but that after having come to the sion that the defendant had made a “fraudulent misrepresentation,” Mr. Guinness proceeds to state that the evidence about Mr. Lowe having given-the order mentioned by the defendant, was “ contradictory,” and fur that reason nonsuits the plaintiff with costs. But, sir, if Mr. Guinness is correct in saying that the defendant had made a “fraudulent misrepresentation ” about the said order, then the evidence could not have been contradictory; the whole weight must have been against the defendant. If the evidence was, as Mr. Guinness says, “ contradictory ” as to whether Lowe gave the order or not, then, surely, the defendant should not have been held to have made a “fraudulent misrepresentation” about that same order when he said that Mr. Howe had given it. Without wishing to be at all disrespectful to Mr. Guinness, I think it might safely be said, that of whatever nature the evidence in the case might have been, the judgment was without doubt self-contradictory.—lam, &c.-, An Inquisitive Reader. Ashburton, Jan. 21, 1880.
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