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ry, for nearly twelve months after they had been thus * marked and censured by Mr. J. Fox, never prefer

red any charge or complaint. And it appears by the evidence (however costive) of Mr. James Galbraith, * before the Committee of the Lords, that he, in conjunction with a Mr. Robert Wier, an attorney in Dublin (whose bastard son Noble Wier was one of the Fermanagh petty jurymen) prepared the petition of Mr. Armstrong and the jurymen, that was presented to the House of Lords, withont the privity or direction of any of them. It was then, without a moment's delay, engrossed

for signatures. The whole of that petty jury s signed it without enquiry or scruple, and dined to

gether at a public house at Enniskillen. The din

ner was neither ordered nor paid for by any of 7 thein. Mr. Galbraith admitted in his evidence, t

+ This Mr. James Galbraith had for many years been attorney and law agent to the Marquis of Abercorn; he had long been under sheriff to the county. He is moreover a banker, patentee clerk of the errors of the court of exchequer chamber, crown solicitor for the North West circuit, and register of the diocese of Derry. Mr. Robert. Wier is a practising attorney at Dublin : and at that time was a defendant in a suit depending in the Court of Common Pleas in Ireland, in which a heavy verdict had been found against him for money received at different times in trust for the Plaintiff, and a motion to set aside the verdicl had been lately refused by that court.

• When this Mr. Galbraith was questioned in the committee, “how he came to suffer an allegation to be stated in that peti. “ tion, which, according to his own evidence given to that “ House, was was absolutely untrue?" His answer was, “ The " petition, as to the latter part of it, was stated to him by Mr. “ Weir,” (Printed Evid. p. 53 )

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1905... that he summoned them all to attend as witnesses

in London, to support the allegations of the petition, and advanced them money for their journey and expences. Mr. Armstrong and the other jurymen examined before the committee positively denied upon oath, that Judge Fox did, as stated in the petition, on the trial of Fletcher, Keys and i Sharp, for the murder of Morris, charge very strongly to find the prisoners guilty, or that he expressed great dissatisfaction when the jury delivered their verdict. On the contrary, when the evidence had been gone through, the judge summed up with accuracy and precision, and then left it to the jury, observing to them, that there was evidence sufficient, if they believed it, to find the prisoners guilty, noticing the different circunstances, that applied particularly to each; and then left the case of the prisoners to them in the alternative, charging them, if they believed the wit nesses,' to find the prisoners guilty ; but if they did not believe the witnesses, to find a verdict of acquittal. The jury, after a short deliberation, brought in a verdict, acquitting all the prisoners, which was received and recorded without any observation from the judge, and the prisoners were discharged. The most virulent of the witnesses produced to this charge have admitted, that the prisoners had, under the judge's direction, not only a fair and impartial, but a merciful trial. Thus the foul and revolting charge made in the House of Lords, that a judge had usurped the power of the jurors, and strongly charged the jury to find

1805.

the prisoner guilty, has been proved by the prose- 1805. cutor's own witnesses to have been an audacious and malignant falsehood. On the day after that trial, Mr. J. Fox taking into consideration, that the verdict in this case was contrary to strong and pregnant evidence, and that the jury, even during the trial had manifested an unjust bias by the questions, which they put to the witnesses from the jury box, and it appearing to him a case, on which no unprejudiced person in court entertained a doubt as to the guilt of two, at least, of the prisoners, and from his knowledge of the circuit, he thought it would be conducive to the ends of jus. tice, to mark the verdict by such a censure, as he had known to have passed upon similar verdicts from the most enlightened judges, both of his own and former' times. He did, therefore, in the presence of the Grand Jury, take an occasion of animadverting with severity on the conduct of the petty jury, and concluded by directing the clerk. of the crown to enter a rule upon his crown book, in the following words, first stating the names of the jurors: « The King THE above names are handV.

ed by order of the Hon. Fletcher and others.) Mr. J. Fox, to the different going judges of asssize, with his wish, that they should never be returned on any jury in capital cases, in as much as they found a verdict in this case against the clearest evidence.” In so acting, the conduct of the learned judge could not have been more prudent, legal or constitutional

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The seventh article of complaint is, comparatively with the others, of trifling import. It tends, indeed, to show, to what lengths wounded pride and baffled corruption will go, when armed with the power and countenance of the state. “ That “ at Lifford, on the same circuit, the said Luke “ Fox did swear and impannel a Grand Jury, one “ day before the day he had appointed by public " advertisement for that purpose, by means where to of, many respectable gentlemen of the county « of Donegall, who usually attended, and did ac

cordingly, with the same notice, afterwards come to attend, as jurors, were prevented from “ being sworn and impannelled on the Grand “ Jury.” The circumstances, on which this head of accusation rests are. That on Thursday, the 25th of August, 1803, the assizes commenced at Lifford; and as soon as the judges had opened the commission, Mr. J. Fox was informed by the sheriff of the county, at the head of a very considerable number of gentlemen, that there was then a full attendance of the gentlemen of the county, who were summoned by him to attend as grand jurors at that assize : and that he was commissioned by them to request they might be then sworn; that the business of the assizes would be thereby much ex- N pedited: and that it would be a great conveniency to the gentlemen of the county; as by so doing the business inight be gone through, and the court discharged by Saturday: otherwise they must be detained till the Monday, which would be, under the existing circumstances of alarm

and danger, peculiarly inconvenient. The judge, 1805. seeing a full attendance of such gentlemen, as were usually known to have served on Grand Juries in that

county, and several of those gentlemen having re: presented to him, that their attendance was required

in other places, particularly to embody their corps of yeomanry, was disposed to comply with their request. Wishing, however, to give every gentleman of the county returned on the sheriff's pannel. an opportunity of serving on the Grand Jury, if he thought fit to attend, adjourned the Court, and waited above two hours longer. * Being again importuned by the gentlemen present, and assured by the sheriff, that there was a sufficient attendance of the gentlemen returned on his pannel, the Judge returned to Court, and swore in the Grand Jury. This proceeding was, in every respect, regular and legal. The Grand Jury was sworn on the return day of the precept, signed by the Judges, and directed to the sheriff: and the swearing on Thursday was at the express and repeated requests of the sheriff and the gentlememen returned on his pannel. It was done for the accommodation and for the purposes of expediting the public business. Mr. James Galbraith, Attorney and Solicitor for the Crown was returned on the pannel, attended, was sworn, and acted as a Grand Juror at the assizes. What laudable motive could have suggested such an accusation, couched in such agrravating terms, against a respectable judge, ten months after the

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