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II SENSATIONAL AFFAIlt AT MAESTEG. A PROPERTY OWNER CHARGED WITH THEFT. COMMITTED FOR TRIAL. At the Bridgend petty sessions on Saturday Edward Davies, landlord of the Maesteg Inn and an owner of considerable property was charged on remand with stealing of brass, the property of the Maesteg Tin- vvorks. Great interest was taken in the case as the defendant was well known, and had hitherto been held in high esteem at Maesteg.-—Mi-. Charles solicitor, Neath, prosecuted on behalf of Mr' Edwards, proprietor of the Llwydarth Tin Works Maesteg and Mr. Scale (Scale and David), solicitor, Bridgend, appeared for the prisoner, who had been arrested and let out on bail.—Mr. Charles having opened the case, the following evidence was adduced r—Jonathan Perkins, roll-turner. Liwv- darth-road. Maesteg, said that he worked at the Maesteg Tin Works, owned by Mr. Edwards. Last Wednesday evening he was called into the Maesteg Inn, kept by Mr. Edward Davies. He was shown the pieces of brass (produced). Davies was present, his son. Sergeant Hill, and another police- man. Witness examined the bearings, but did not measure them. The woodt-n pattern handed to him he got from Havod's foundry. Mr. Havod had made bearings for the works Witness compared the brass bearing with the pattern, and they resembled each other but the pattern was a little bit longer than the bearing. Ihe pattern had been altered by the addition of a piece of wood. Another alteration had been made on the FLANGE of the pattern. The bearing COUJ- pared with the pattern if- the adder! piece of wood were taken off. The pattern was altered at the works since Mr. Edwards took possession. Witness went to the Maesteg Inn the next day on the Thuisday with Robert Gray. They again examined the bearings in the presence of the prisoner Sergeant Hill, and Mr. Edwards. Witness said to prisoner they had some at the works of the same size, and went with the measurement of them.— In cross-examination, witness said he could not say when the pattern was made, but it was an old one. It was usual for different Tin Works to have patterns of the same size. He could not say that the articles produced belonged to the Tin Works but they belonged to a Tin Works. He could not identify any of the articles produced, He had never missed anything from the works, but Mr. Edwards had been complainincr of them usino- ton much brass. The pieces on the table were of no use except forsale as old metal.—Re-examined: If a bearing broke and was too warm it would be thrown on the ground, and not taken dircct to the store. He had not compared the bearings in other works with those at Maesteg.—Robert Gray,.Llansamlet, and lodging at Llantrissant, said he was a fitter or mechanic. He said he worked at Mr. Edwards' tin works at Llantrissant and Maesteg. He was at the Maesteg Inn on the Thursdav, and; saw some pieces of brass there like those produced. He had not compared them with patterns, but compared the measurements of the brass with bearings at the store of the MaestcgTin Works He found they were very nearly the same. He had seen brass rods like those produced at many tin works, and at the Maesteg Tin Works. Witness first went to the Maesteg Works 18 months ago with Mr. Edwards. It was about half a mile from the Maesteg Tin Works to the Maesteg Works. There were no other tin works nearer than Llantrissant or Port Talbot.— Cross-examined Witness said that for several months the works were idle before Mr. Edwards took possession. He was not able to identify any of the arfcices produced, and could not say to whom they belonged. The pieces had been idle-for some time, but he could not say how long. At the Maesteg Inn Mr. Davies did not make the slightest attempt to keep anything back, but gave every assistance. Witness "had lodged with Mr. Davies, but he could not say about others who worked for Mr. Davies staying with htm. He had never heard of anything being lost from the tin works.—Re-examined Although he. had been staying in Mr. Davies' house, off and on, for 18 months, he had never told him about having a large quantity of brass.—David Rees Jones, iron and brass founder, Neath, said he had been in the habit of supplying Mr. Edwards with brsss bear- ings. The pattern on the table (No. 2) was his pattern. He had compared two pieces of brass with the pattern. The pieces originally formed one bearing. As the result of his examination, he considered that they were as nearly as possible similar to the pattern, but he could noc swear that they were made from it. He supplied other tin works with brass bearings, but did not suppiv any with bearings similar to the pattern produced. Last Tuesday week he went bo the Maestetr Inn for dinner, and there saw Mr Davies. who spoke to him about some brass. Mr. Davis began the conversation by asking witness if he was melting brass, and asked how much a pound it was worth. Witness said that he could not say without seeing it, so as to know what quality it was. The con- versatioR stopped then, but after dinner Mr. Davis asked him to go with him. They went into the beer cellar and saw some yellow metal stuff in a bucket. After that Mr. Davies showed him some brass, like that on the table in court, underneath an old sack. It was on the floor of the cellar. Witness agreed to buy the brass at 5d. a pound, and what was in the bucket at 3d. a pound. That was a fair price, and he had paid fivepence and an eighth for similar stuff. After witness suggested to Mr. Davies to have it weighed and sent by rail to him, he said perhaps it would be better to send it by dray and not by train. Nothing more passed between ¡ them, but afterwards he made a com- them, but afterwards he made a com- munication to Mr. W. H. Edwards. Cross-examined: It would be nearer to send by dray instead of by train. One would be about 8 miles and the other would be about 30 miles. Witness added that he never sent his goods by dray to Maesteg. Others made patterns as well as he, but he had never in his experience found other founders using patterns exactly similar to those he used. Witness had been to Mr. Da-vies' house in company with officials from the Tin Works, and it was possible that Mr. Davies might know that he was a brother-in-law of Mr. Edwards.—Police- sergeant George Hill said that from information received he went to the Maesteg Inn about 7 o'clock last Wednesday evening in company with Police-constable Williams. There he saw Mr. Davies inside and called him to one side. They went into a little room at the back of the bar. He said to Davies Is it true that you have offered a large quantity of old brass for sale recently ? He said Nothing of the sore." Witness said Have you not offered any brass to any one for sale?" He said Yes. I offered some to the man at the foundry here, about a month ago." Witness said,) "Have you offered, it to anyone else?" He said "No." Witness-again said Did you not offer brass to a man, named Jones about a week agaJ." He said" Yes. I did. Mr. Jones was here having dinner, and I asked him to buy some." Witness then said Wi.l you kindly show me the brass that you. have offered for sale." He took witness into the back kitchen, which formed a cellar as well as a back kitchen, and pulled out about a hundred- weight of scrap brass in a large bucket from under the tablo, Witness looked at it,, and he said "That is-not a large quantity; is it?" Witness said, Is that all the brass y&u have got in the house?" He said: "No.; there's a bit more here," and stooped down and pulled out two bear- ings. faem under the table, from, under which he had;taken the bucket. Witness- said: "Is there any a&orc?" and he made JbØo answer. Witness wenli, on his knees, and pujledi out a sack, which. covered 15 pieces of brass. He pulled the bag away, and pulled the pieoos of brass out-rods and. brajs bolts. They wore all together in a. heap. He said This is a large quan- tifcy of brass for- you to have ih yimr possession, how do, you account for having it here?" He said," WelLifc must have been brought here by somebody," and after a little pause--say a minute or two—he said, I found it in a hea^ on my premises, but I oant tell how it came tberc. About five or six nusaths ago." Witness saj £ I don't want you to tieil me where yoa found, tt, but if you wish to diD. so you can." Mr. Davies, not seeming willing so show him where he. found it then, so witness, pulled it all out from ander the table and called in Jonathan Perkins,. who was waiting outside. Perkins examined, the brass carefully andi took measurements. After he had done he said,. That brass is exactly similar to the brass bearings in our works." The defendant was present. Tble-y left the house together. and witness told Mr. Davies that he should make further enquiries into the case. The following evening witness was sent for by Mr. Edwards, and afterwards went with others to the defendant's house. Polioe^eonstable Ings was with him. Mr. Davies went with them into the b¡)Qk kitchen. It was about three o'clock. The brass bearings were examined and the measure- ments were taken. After witness said to Mr. Gray and Mr. Perkins 11 Are you prepared to sweat that this brass is fro;o your works ?" they both said they were. He then said to Mr. Davies, U I have nothing to do, hut to take you into custody, and I charge yon with stealing this brass since February, 1891, from the works." He said,vl Well, I have nothing more to tell you than that I found it where I described, and I will show you the place," Wi%t.4 WPnt with him iq tl\e loWQr end hrnSn and that the W!lU been broken and again built up. Witness also ex- annned the outside. Mr. Davies said that he got it through the hole from the outside. Prisoner went with him outside. There was a garden, and for about a foot of the wall there was a gulley 72ft. deep. The gulley was covered with thin flags, one of which had been removed. Witness then conveyed prisoner to Bridgend, where he was admitted to bail. The brass weighed 353 Ibs., and at 5d for the lb. was worth £ 7 7s. Id. Cross- examined, prisoner said that when the stuff was found it was in a bag. He had always considered Mr. Davies as a very respectable man, and the owner of considerable property in Maesteg. He was confident that the men said dis- tinctly that they could swear the brass came from their works.—Mr. Gray, re-called, said he did not say to Sergeant Hill that he could swear the brass CTJ. u°no the W°rks.—Mr. Perkins said that when a^ked by Sergeant Hill he replied I can swear that it is tin mill brass." Mr. Scale stated that it was merely a case of suspicion, and said that no jury would convict upon the evidence adduced.—The magistrates, held, however, that it was a proper case to be decided by a jury, and the prisoner (who pleaded ? • ?nd r,eserved his defence) was com- mitted for trial at the assizes.








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