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Tie Strange Adventures of Stephen Bosher. Tie Charge of _ Alleged Bigamy.

The charge of having contracted a bigamous marriage, which has been banging over the man Stephen Bosher for some time, was dealt with, in so far as preliminaries are; concerned, at the Stipendiary Hagistraid's Coiirtj dll "Saturday morning before Mr ctroenlield. The accused, who appears to have got into . trouble all round, is already in gaol awaiting trial in connection with various monetary transactions. So far as the alleged bigamy is concerned, the case presents some peculiar features, the strange adventures of Bosher during the last 18 years, between the time of his first marriage and his appearance in the dock on Saturday, forming a romantic chapter in his life’s History. In the seventies, Bosher lived at Akaroa, and, when working for a man named tie Beau, marfiod the latter’s daughter, Joflophmo.lio Beau, going up to Lyttelton RpparenUyJtor that purpose. Tho.cduple Bottled down in AJnvro'a,' Iwt a couple of years afterwards Bosher had to go home to France, on what business has apparently never been stated. Ho was arrested after arrival for not having served country in a military capacity. IBs imprisonment, soldiering, and subsequent travelling experiences, extending over a good many years, and his subsequent arrival in London, and then again in Now Zealand, nro detailed in a letter which is appended below, written from Wellington . Gaol to his second wife, who is now living at Petono. The later developments appear to have been that Bosher bad telegraphed to his first wife, who had boon living in Akaroa ever since his departure from the Colony, asking if he should come home. She had changed her name to Sergison in the interim, and wired back tho simple word " No." This wire was produced in Court oa Saturday. Bosher afterwards married Mary Ann Reece, daughter of a Wellington resident, some four years ago, and they had been living together until ho got into his preeent trouble. The accused wore a worried look when brought into Court, but ho was neatly dressed; a white shirt shone behind tt buttonod-up coat, and a bow was suspended, from a turn-down collar. Ha watched the proceedings with interest, and only vouchsafed a side glance at his flist wife as she passed tho dock to take a seat on the form near the witness-box. She sat with her back to accused, and neither saw each other’s face during the whole proceedings. Mrs Bosher was not called to give testimony, being" apparently present for tho purpose of being identified by a witness to their marriage. The later wife of prisoner was not put In tho box either, witnesses to the second ceremony being doomed sufiloiont. ' , . On being charged, tho prisoner said ho wanted a remand in order to procure the attendance of two witnesses. Ohb Was in Foxton, tho other in Wellington. He had only had notice of the case tho previous day at 3 o’clock, and could do nothing, being in gaol. Tho Stipendiary Magistrate said he could have hia witneseoe ready by the time the case came before tho Supremo Court. Accused did not know that hia Foslon witness would come, down in time, He was a farmer in that district. Inspector Ponder said tho police would arrange for any witnesses to be ih attendance. Bosher was told some time ago that the charge would be preferred against him.

It was eventually decided to goon with the case, accused's witnoaaea to be summoned to attend at the higher Court. In the present proceedings he waa unrepresented by counsel. Inspector Pender conducted the charge for the police. Antonio Boderigues> hotelkeeper, was the first to tender testimony, life belonged to Akaroa, and had-lived there 40 years. Was acquainted with aCcttsed thefb; both when he (accused) was single and after he got married. He also knew a woman named Josephine Le Beau. She had lived with her father, a brickmaker, in the township. He did not remember seeing Bosher and Miss Le Beau on January Ist, 1878, at Akaroa. Remembered the time they were married, however. He was a witness to the ceremony, which took place at T.y ttolton ill the Catholic Church. Father Honoilgh officiated i there was no one else present. [Certificate of marriage here pnt in.] Wit ness could not swear to the date* but knew that accused had a daughter aged. 16 or 17. Bosher ahd his wife lived, at Akaroa for some time subsequently. The issue of the marriage waa two girls. Mrs Bosher Waa still alive, and Came Up in the steamer with witness from the South on Friday last. Father DonougH waa now dead. Accused had no questions to ask. Emanuel Reece, carpenter, deposed that tii liked in Elisabeth street, Wellington: ?e was married; and IliS wife was liking; hey had a daughter named Maty Ann feoeoo. Knew the accused. First met him five years ago last August. Accused paid attentions to his daughter, and they were married. Witness was present at the marriage, which took place in his own house in Taranaki street four years ago, tho ceremony being performed by the Rev C. Dallaaton, Baptist minister. His other daughter, Eliza Reece, .was also present. Prior to tho marriage witness had asked Bosher if he had boon married previously, accused replying in the negative. Witness then consented to Bosher'a union with his daughter. They had lived together since. [Certificate of marriage put in.] Eliza Reece, daughter of the last witness, recollected the marriage of her sister, Mary. Ann, to Bosher. She was present at the time. It occurred on the 17th April, 1892. Her sister was still alive and living out at Petoue.

Accused had no questions to ask, Sydney George Millington, chief warder at Wellington Terrace Goal, produced a plotter written by Boahor in gaol to his second wife at Petone, This letter, already referred to, stated that he (Bosher) had received a letter from a certain party asking him a few questions.' Instead of replying he had decided to write to her (Mrs Bosher) telling her how their marriage relations stood. As he had told her before, his name, in French, was Brother, but its equivalent in English being rather hard, he altered it to Bosher to make It sound, softer. As she knew, ho was in., Akaroa. some years ago, -working for a man named Le Beau in-Grehan Valley. At- Be Beau's request he' married his daughter Josephine. |Two : years afterwards he left the place for Melbourne, with-tho intention of going home. He shipped as cook on board a French boat that happened to be leaving at the time. He ' signed articles before the French Consul in Melbourne. When he arrived in Francehe was arrested tor not having done his military duty, and, after the lapse of a long period, he was brought before a court-martial at Lisle, in the North of Franco, and.becauso he had been naturalised without his parents’ consent, and refused absolutely at the trial to become a aoldiar, ho was ordered to be imprisoned for three years iha military prison, and sent to Ohlllons-sur-Marae, 107 miles from Paris by rail.'- After ho had been there two years he ■was sent to a place called Loquhat, in the middle of the desert of Sahara.. When he was at Ohilona-eur-Marne he wrote to the English Government and the New Zealand Cfovernmont, and while in Africa he communicated with the British Consul in" Algiers, but none of his letters were ever sent, ae hp'discovered subsequently.: He managed to get away one letter, through a Morocco • man, to the Minister of Justice in Now-Zealand, and he received a reply from the TJnder-Seoro-tary, Mr Cooper, who was still in Wellington. After doing.,five years of Soldiering,* he was free to go anywhere he liked.' He went to Algiers and 1 interviewed the British ■ Consul, who : said he had never received any of bis letters; That was in 1800. He then boarded the s.s. Trinidad, and made, for Liverpool, and took the trainto London. Going to the New Zealand Office at Whitechapel, ho made, similar enquiries, as to letter?, and once again heard of their nop-receipt. A gentleman connected with the office took him to the Shaw*, Savill Company’s office, and procured a billet for him as steward on tha_ Done. Ho afterwards telegraphed to his wife at Akaroa, and she' replied, " I am married again." Ho sent another wire, •‘Shall I cods, or not?” The answer came, ’’No." Afterwards ho came across a few people who had been in Akaroa, and they had informed him that his wife was re-married to a man named Sergison. The letter concludes Consequently, I think we are lawful man and wife, before God and man. I shall wait for an answer from yon about your intentions between you and mo. X remain, yours, Stephen Bosheb,” „ , „ . i The next witness called was Sergeant James O’Malley, who stated that on the 22nd October he read a warrant to accused | in gaol, charging him with the present offence. Accused asked if the police had a telegram from his first, wife in Akaroa, witness replying in the affirmative, and showing him it. Accused said, “ That s it.’’ [This wire contained the word “No ’ in reply to bis enquiry as to whether he should return home.] Witness, continuing said ho obtained the telegram and the ' letter from Mrs Bosher {nee Reece) at P Antonio Roderiguea (recalled) identified the first Mrs Bosher, who was then in Court. She was How known as MrsjSergison This was all the evidence, and prisoner was committed for trial. He merely said h-ii would have to get his witnesses down, but didn’t think he would have time. Inspector Pender said if he gave in their names they would bo brought. Accused said he would give them to the Registrar of the Supreme Court that aftor- '. root.—Ha was then removed.;

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A MODERN ROMANCE., New Zealand Times, Volume LVIX, Issue 2978, 16 November 1896

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A MODERN ROMANCE. New Zealand Times, Volume LVIX, Issue 2978, 16 November 1896

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