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Author Topic: Smuggled Tobacco, Brompton & Chatham, 1842  (Read 1927 times)

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Offline Leofwine

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Smuggled Tobacco, Brompton & Chatham, 1842
« Reply #1 on: February 20, 2013, 23:34:08 »
Kentish Gazette - Tuesday 04 October 1842

- From the great increase in the smuggling of tobacco into the towns of Rochester, Chatham, &c, the Custom-house officers of Rochester received instructions from the Commissioners of Excise to use great vigilance to detect the offenders. The officers obtained information that some dealers in tobacco were selling the foreign article at considerably less than the amount of the duty — the duty being 9s. 4d. per lb., and the party selling it at 3s. 4d. Search warrants were procured against two individuals, one named James Benjamin Sutton, a respectable grocer in the garrison town of Brompton, in whose cellar they found concealed 57lbs. weight of foreign tobacco, which was seized and carried away. It was packed in cakes about 9 inches long, and about 1¼ inch thick. The smugglers by such means easily stow it away between the sides of the craft which are daily coming into this port from Jersey and Guernsey. The other seizure the officers effected at Jewess's, named Marks, living in the High-street of Chatham, where they found concealed 7lbs. weight. The Commissioners of Customs exhibited informations against the parties, and their case came before the hearing of a full bench of County Magistrates at Rochester on Monday last. Mr. Richard Prall, solicitor, of Rochester, appeared for Sutton, who pleaded guilty. Mr. John Sykes, Collector of Excise, being duly sworn, said that on the 23d day of August last information was received that the defendant had some tobacco on his premises which had not paid the duty. He obtained a search warrant, and found the tobacco as described in the information. The penalty incurred for the offence is treble the amount of duty, making in the aggregate £76 11s. The Magistrates, considering it was the first offence, mitigated the penalty to £25. The defendant holds the respectable station in the town as post-master and collector of poor-rate for the parish of Gillingham; the case excited considerable interest, and the Court was filled with persons. Mrs. Marks was convicted in the mitigated penalty of £3, being a third of the penalty sought by the Customs.
Brompton History Research Group


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