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TO THE EDITOE. Sib, —I balieve I expreso the opinion of the general public in saying that, while the finding'of the Court is eminently satisfactory and in accordance with the evidence, the sentence imposed on those found guilty is anything but in conformity with the gravity of the offence. No tittle of excuse or palliation was adduced, no reasons for mitigation afforded. Let me quote from the decision of the presiding officer of the Court, as reported in the Press,:— The ship's compasses are described as beinc splendid ones.

I am forced to the conclusion that, supposing the point of departure to be correctly stated aod that the course was set as stated, it j«is not correctly made or correctly steered. 1 consider it proved, as far as such a negative question can be proved, that no such rock exist*. If the evidence of the captain and officers on the question is set aside, all the rest of the evidence goes to show that she struck on the rocks at or about thcS.E. point of Table Cape. The ship, to have struck at all, must have been far inside the proper course, and in the weatherand under the circumstances described it must be considered careless and negligent navigation on the part of the officers to allow her to get so far inside. As to Mr M'Grath, there can be no question that he was gitilty of gross negligence.

The italics are mine. Surely, sir, in the face of this—" resulting in the drowning, it is reported, of thirteen persons "—such a trifling penalty as suspension of certificate for six months (!) is outrageously inadequate. At the very least tho certificates should have been withdrawn and cancelled absolutely. One does not uphold "vindictive" measures, but the safety of life and property

and the conttrntly-increasing number of whnliy unaccounted for wrecks upon our, coasts demand that " the punishment fit the crime" to some extent. . The sentence in question is not punishment at all—it is little more than a vote of censure—and I trust that that greater the Press, will not fail to take proper oognisance of the suhj-_cv generally.—l am, etc.,. CITIZEX. Dunedin, September 23.

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Bibliographic details

THE TASMANIA INQUIRY., Issue 10429, 25 September 1897, Supplement

Word Count

THE TASMANIA INQUIRY. Issue 10429, 25 September 1897, Supplement

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