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The Newgate Calendar - SAMUEL HINCHCLIFFE


Convicted at the Westminster Sessions in January, 1790, Imprisoned and publicly whipped for a Fraudulent Trick

AN Act of Parliament was passed, a short time subsequent to the conviction of this man, to prevent the exploiting of carriers and porters bringing packages for coach, wagon, etc., to London. The imposition had arrived at such a pitch that rascals, pretending to be porters at inns, would often put a few stones or brickbats into hand-baskets, and other packages, and cheat the unsuspicious, to whom they had directed them, of a few shillings, as carriage and porterage. Other villains, actually porters to inns, would charge carriage though already paid in the country, as will be found in the present case.

Samuel Hinchcliffe having thus imposed upon Daniel Delaney, Esq., that gentleman commenced a prosecution against him, on which he was tried at the Westminster sessions for fraudulently obtaining from Cowley, his servant, two shillings, under pretence of its being for the carriage of a parcel from Norwich, the prisoner well knowing that the carriage had been before paid.

Cowley deposed that the prisoner brought to his master's house a parcel directed to Daniel Delaney, Esq. He told the witness he had brought it from the White Horse Inn, Fetter Lane, and demanded two shillings for the carriage, and one shilling for the porterage. The witness observed to him that the carriage ought to have been paid, and on looking at the direction he discovered that part of it had been torn off, and "Three Shillings" written over it.

This created suspicion, and he several times advised the prisoner not to take the two shillings for the carriage, as he was persuaded it had been paid. The prisoner, however, persisted in his charge, and took three shillings. The next day the witness was sent by his master to the White Horse, and found that the parcel had not been brought from that inn. He then went to the Swan, in Lad Lane, to which inn he found that the parcel had come by the Norwich coach, and that the carriage had been paid in the country.

The next witness called was a clerk at the Swan, who deposed that the prisoner was an assistant porter at that house, employed to deliver parcels. Upon examining the way-book he found the carriage of the parcel had been paid, and that the prisoner had accounted for only one shilling for the porterage.

The jury immediately found him guilty.

Mr Mainwaring, the chairman, observed that this was a case of great importance to the public, who were daily suffering under such impositions. As it was very difficult to detect this kind of fraud, it was necessary to make an example of those offenders against whom the charge was proved. He further added that Mr Delaney, by instituting this prosecution, merited the thanks of the public. He then sentenced the prisoner to three months' imprisonment, and to be publicly whipped from the Admiralty to Charing Cross, and from thence to Bridge Street, Parliament Street; which punishment was inflicted, to the great satisfaction of the spectators.


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