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-.--------THE SOOTH WALES…









LIBERATOR FRAUDS, PROCEEDINGS AGAINST DIREC- TORS. MORE REVELATIONS BY THE LIQUIDATOR. The hearing of the charges of conspiracy and fraud against the directors of the Balfour group of companies was resumed on Thursday at the Guild-hall (before Mr. Alderman Lavies). THE LIQUIDATOR'S EVIDENCE. Mr. Wheeler, the official receiver and liqui- dator of the company, agPin went. into the wit- ness-box, His attention was called to the agenda book of Mi. TheolsJd, one of the direc- tors ebaxgtd. He found an entry oi the 12th of Novtmber, 1890, relating to the Kensington Gore Estate and Newman ajid Co. There was also an entry, '"Tilbury, £ 2,000. There waa an entry on ibe 1 Tlh of Maich, IRdU, ''Ken.- sington Gore Kstates, by Newman and Co." Then there were some calculations. On the same day there was an entry, 'Salisbury-street and J. W. hohbs and Co." The next was "House and land, £ 1,600 a week, approval. On the 26th of March there was, "Newman, Albert- bail Estate; Hobbs, Salisbury-street site, and House and' Lands Trust.' On April 2, 1890, there was a.n entry, "Reports and accounts ;passed." On April 17. 1890, the dim-tors' ro numeration wa3 £ 3,000. He next went to Brook's agenda book, and his attention was called to tiie 26th of February, 1890, when there was this entry:—Newman's repoit re Meresbrook.'1 Mr. Newman's report read: — "Agreed to instruot solicitor to prepare deed of covenant providing for the mutual abandon- ment of rates, as between our tenants Tryacke and Tuner and ourselves with a, view to filling in the bauds and girt-s provided. Such procedure shall not, by interference with the rights of the public., involve the company in possible litigation." MR. AVORY EXPLAINSu Mr. Avory (for the Crown) said this imfclit appear untelligible on the face of it. but h& was going -to show that £ 5,000 was added to the ?•! resbrook Estate in this particular quarter, in addition to the usual sum f. r in- terest, under the head of increased in respect to land regained by filling up oams on the estate. Then he should -how 'nter on that the dam.- had not been fillod up at a']. WITNESS CONTINUES. Witness went on to speak T& an entry of the 17t,h of Marcii, 1890, in v-nich there was a re- ference to the Kensington Gore Estate and the proposal in Newnu-u's letter of the ilth. There was also a reference to a proposal iu Hobbs.' letter of the 17th of March in respect to the Salisbury-street site. Tbe proposal wa^ ac- cepted ami the chairman was to make applica- tion to the House and Lands Trust to under- take the financing. Witness, next proceeded to prove what tiie learned counsel had stated with respect to the adding of £ 5,000 for filling up dams which had not been filled up. Going back to the 1888 arxxxunts, ho found that the, Tilbury Estate: was included in the item "Mort- gagoia of £ 45,000,as due from the Ileal Estates Company, 911 purchase of a portion of the Til- bury land; and the item "Interest" in the jirofil and loss account mentioned an alleged profit of £ 14-,746 on the sale of this portion of the Tilbury Estate to the Real Estates Company. There was a litter, dated March 5, lb8b, ad- dressed to the Luitis Allotmeait Company, and signed "William Fleck." The letter said the writer was thinking of purchasing the Til- bury Estate, the figure named being £ 115,000— JM5,000 in cash, part iu mortgage, and pare in shares of the Real Estates Company. The Real Estates Company wa»s not incorporated till the 13th of April, 1888. Fleck became first secretary on the 20th of April, Oeorge Newman being the chairman. At a boaixl meeting oJ the Lands Allotment Company ÜdI the 9th of May, Theobald iind Dibley bfiDg- prosent, it was resolved to accept Fleck's offer of £ 45,000 for a portion of the land referred to ia his letter. Before tha.t resolution on the IPth of May, 1888, cheques had been exchanged ta carry out the transaction. He produced a cheque, dated the 30th oi April, 1888, drawn I by the Real Estates Company in favour of W. Fleck, for £ i5.000. It was drawn 011 the London and General Bank, and signed by I George Newman and Co. and Wright, and coun- tersigned "W. Fleck, secretary," and crossed Account of W. Fleck, London and General Lank." Witness produced a cheque, dated the Ilth of March, 1888, drawn by the Lands? Allot ment Company m favour of the Real Estates Company, and signed by Brock and Gutteridge, a.nd countersigned by Rock, the secretary, it was endorsed on the back, "Real Estates Com- pany, (Limited), George Newman, chairman," ¡ and was for £ 4-5,000. I Mr. Avory said it would be seen soon how people sometimes over-reached themselves. I Witness went on to say that. by a reference to the account of the Lands Allotment- Company with the London and General Bank, lie found that the Allotments Company was credited with £ 45,000. as received from Fleck on the 30th of April, 1888. On the same day, the Lands Allotment was debited with the sum a* paid EXAMINATION BY THE CROWN SOLICITOR. Mr. Avory: What is the result of all that as regards the Lands Allotment Company? —Ihe result js nil. Mr. Avory The Lands Allotment Company derive no benefit from the transaction. Witness as-sented, and went on to say that ihe cheque for £ 45,000 was passed iisrougli Fleck's account, and afterwards passed om to tbe Lands cheque for £45,000 was passed iisrougli Fleck's account, and afterwards passed om to tbe Lands Allotment Compai-y. The alleged profit in connection with the wile represented by the cheuue went into the account of the Lands Allotment Comuanv on the 31st of Maroli of tha.t year. ljut the cheque must have been drawn aft-r the 27th of April, Was any portion of that £ 45,000 ever paid to the Lands Allotment Company ?—No. Witness went on to eay that the It wl Estaies Compnny was being wound up. It showed a deficiency as regarded creditors of £108,000 odd Did it ever have :Mny capital of its own ? Witness: The only shares issued for cash were 47 A shares, at £ 5 each, 37 of which were allotted to the directors and signatories; 250 A shares were allotted to the Lands Allotment Company, and 550 B shares, at £5, were allotted to Rock, secretary of the Lands Allotment Company. Both these parcels of shaves were allotted aa being fully paid. The £ 45,000 was entered in the cash-book as if it 1 ad been re- ceived from different, buildere. Referring to the aneounÙl for 1891, he found Ihe item "Mortgagors" among the assets f.,r t'33j ]00 included £ 253,300 due from Newman and Co. -h among the assets for £ 140,882 included £ 96,621 owing' by Newman and Uo.. thy fccfca-1 being1 £ 349,921. in the profit and loss aocounfc an item of pmfit 011 saltv., oon- tract, commission, &c., £ 47.931. included a sum of £ 25.000 credited as a premiuui in resjiect to aai agreement to make advances to Newman and t Co. on the Albert-hail property. Tliat pre- mium of £ 25,000 was ei.tered in the jonrna.1 and ifcdsrer. The aavanee was made upon blocks A and B of the property, which were other blorks to those on which advances were made in 1890 The item "Proftt on sales" 31?0 included a sum of £ 10,000, charged to the account of the Queen's Park Estate, Brighton. That was en i f-: ed iu the journal under date of March. TS91. Taking the £ 25.000 first, he found a board meeting of the Lands Allotment Company was held on the 18th of April. 1891. at winch Brock and 'Theobaii were present. At tiie meeting the balance attpce and accounts were brought up by the secretary, amd on the 15th of April there was another board meeting, at which the same de- fendants were present, wben a proof print of the annual report was considered arid approved, and directed to ho printed and circulated, with the audited account, and the usual dividend of £5 per cent,, with bonus of 3 per cent., was recommended. As to the £ 25,000 premium, at the meeting on the 18th of April the chairman (Mr. Brook! mported the arrangements made with Newman and Co. for the advance of a suta not exceeding £150,000, apread over a. tprm of years ot 7 per cent, interest, and a premium of £ 25,000 by way of advances, supplementary to those of the Liberator Building Society on blocks "A" and "B" of the Aibert-hn.ll Estate. The AMo-man: Is this second JMSO.OOO? --Air. Avory: Yes, and upon a different part of the land. Yon will find the Liberator vas also at the same time making adon eair(. blocks and charging a premium. Witness, turning to the books of the Lands Ailotment, found, under date March 31. 1 RSI, that they werecredited with this sum of £ 25,000 from The Clerk: I take it that it is in the books generally. Mr. Avory: As there will be a possible in- duvjjT-eiit we had better hove tiwi books spe- eifilly. Witness produced cheque for £ 25,000, drawn by Newman and Co., on tiie London and General Bank in favour of tbe Lands Allot- ment., and dated March 31, 1891, and endorsed bv the lands Allotment. Company. The cheque represented the alleged payment of £ 25,000. Mr. Avory: Newman and Co. consisted of the family of Newman, who were all directors or secretaries. Witness saM t-bat on the same day a. cheque was drawn by the Lands All(,nent, Company for the same amount, iu exchange for one of Newman and Co. It was signed by Brock ?uid Theobald, and that appeared to have gone into the account of Newman and Co. at the London and General Bank. Mr. Avory: Except bv this exchange of cheques, docs the Lands Allotment Company appear to have received one farthing of this pretn.ium- Witness; No. wt-ni on to say that at the date when tbev ie^k credit for the pre- II mium no portion of 'the £ 1dQ,Q0G had been advanced. What is the total amount that appears by the books ever to have been advanced under this agreement V Witness: Twelve thousand pounds advanced on the 31st of December, 1681, by the I.onion and General Bank to the Lands Allotment aaid Nowiflan and Co. jointly. Th.5 Lands Allot.nent Company paid over the £ 19. OCX) 4c Newman, and m the Looks of the Lon lan ao<3 General Li;nk that sum was credited to New- man. Prior to tliat credit, Newman's .urr-.t account was overdrawn to the e itelit tf account was overdrawn to the e itelit t f £ 40,000. Is the result of that transaction ih;s-that the London and General Bank themselves ad- vanced £ 12,000 'to Newman to dimi i sh Ins debit?—Yes. AN OBJECTION Mr. Atherley-Jones said lie was there to see to the witness stating what the effect of the transactions wai, The Alderman ruled that- the evidence was admissible, saying that he treated Mr. Wheeler as an expert. Mr. At-herley-Jones said he was there to see that the inquiry was conducted in such a. way as would not prejudicially aifect his client-, Mr. Theobald. He trusted that the alderman was not going to serve merely as a oonduet. by which the-case might be transferred 'elsewhere. The Alderman replied that that must be left to him. lie should do his duty. MR. WHEELER RESUMES. Witness went on to speak of a meeting of the Lands Allotment directors in lE90, Brock and llieObaAd baing presem, when I'.ird and Theobald ware requested to visit the Queen's 1'aik Estate, and report. Subsequently, in December, 1890, the report, of Bird was read, v hen it was resolved to >tfer a sum not exceeding £35,000 for the laud. On the 24th of January, 1891, the same defendan.^ being present, Air. Brock, the chairman, reported that tho purchase had been completed for £3E"COO, that the sum of £ 3,000 had been paid as a deposit, £ 7,000 more to b." paid Oil the 6th of January. 1892, £20,000 to remain on mortgage, aaid £ 5.000 to be paid over in six months. He found in the journal, under dat.-1 March, 1891. £ 10,000 was entered as a profit in respect of the value of a villa, stabling, grounds, &c., !¡,t, Brighton, not taken into account in the basis of purchase* price of the Brighton property. Mr. Avory I shall show that this villa, &c., existed on the cv.tate at the time they pur- chased it for £ 35,000, and tha.t, although it was then in existence, three months after- vards, thev added £ 10,000 to the value -.f the property on nccoumt of the existence of this house. (Laughter.) Witness went on to say that in 1892 the estate was sold to the Buildings Security Company. A board meet- ing of the Lands Allotment was held on the 22jjd of M.:rch, 1892, Brock being present, when it was ievolved to confer with the Build- ings Security Company, ultimately resulting in the sale of the Qu<?en's Park Estate for £60,00P, Mr. Avorv: They having paid £ 35,000 for it the year before?—Yes. The court then adjourned for .luncheon. AFTER THE ADJOURNMENT. On the court resuming. Mr. Wheeler pro- ceeded to say that, having sold the estate to the Building Securities Company, the Lands Aiiotm- ut Company took credit for a profit of B14,805 on the transaction in March. 1892. Witness next proceeded to refer to the agenda book of some of the direl-tors. with a view to showing their knowledge of the transactions. At a hoard meeting on. the 8th of October, 1691, Brock aud Theobald lieing present, it was resolved, on the motion of Mr. Patti-on. seconded by Mr Ttiiobald, that a sum of money be paid to the directors on account of fees. Mr. Avory said this was important, as the directors were paid by com,mission on the earnings, and the accounts upto September. 1891, showed a profit of only £ 3,000. A rough balance-sheyt for 1892 showed a loss of £ 23,259, but the published balance-sheet showed a profit, of £ 46,261. In addition to the profit in the Brighton property, there was an alleged profit, of £ 21,488 on the me of the >- lapham Park Estate to the Ileal Security Conipam. The directors of the Real Estates Company ,ù thnt time were M essrs. Wright and coldwells, whilst Bnx>k was auditor. In March. 1892. Theobald resigned his con- nection with the Lande Allotment Company. Witness read Mr. Theobald's letter of resigna- tion, addressed to Mr Brook, in which ho said. "I have no doubt you share with me some a-nxk-ty us 'to the future of our company." Theobald went on to make surges tiring for the revision of the company's methods of working, and said that no profits should ho anticipated. for division, and no cheques for dividends should be drawn, until approved Jyy the board. No dividend, he said, or a reduced one should be that year. He concluded, "Our oid policy lias failed and ianded as in ditti- cuUieg." Witness' next tetd too replies of Mr. Brock, expressing tlw'!N',gTetof t!:o board at Mr. Theobald's intending retirement, and asking i him if he were "thene as retiring director, he vTOuJtl, instead of resigning, simply refrain from seeking re-election. In that year, 1892, an interim dividend of 5 per cent, was paid, as well as a bonus of 3 per cent. The side of the Olapliain Queen's Park and Clul.^ham pre- pertv, on which alleged profits were made, was never carried out. At a meeting on the nth of May, 1892, they decided to issue 10,000 new shares a.t. £ 5 each, and the circular brought in subscriptions aaiounrng to £ 16.000. In the oouive of some references to a misdng letter, Mr. Wheeler said it had been for, but had not been discovered. There wert" "tors of papers" to go through. This concluded the examination in chief of Mr. Wheeler. COLO WELLS' COUNSEL TALKS. Mr. Roberts then proceeded to address a. few words to the court on behalf of Mr. Coidwelle. He called attention to what he described as a gross and unwarranted attack upon his dwnt, and to some extent; upon the other defc «dants. in a newspaper He proceeded to r^ad Jt. The Alderman, interposing, said it was ail impioper, indecent attack, but lie did not see the use of continuing to read it. Mr. Roberts aud that was sufficient. Cross-exarnired by Mr. Roberta, Mr. Wheeler said that at no time, was Mr. Coid- wells connected with the Liberator Compauy. the Real Estates Company, the Taindq Allot- ment Company, the London and General Bauk, J. W. Hobbs, Newman and Co., and only became a director of the House and Land Trrist Investment- in March, 1888. He became a director of the building societies iu October. 1891. As against Mr. ColdwelW witnesses, complaint relates solely to tite premiums ap- j>G;uing in the accounts of tiie lands allotment up to Maax-h -31. 1890. Other evidence would be given relating to Cold wells am a director of the House and Land Investment Trust. His evidence for the last few days had been directed to the premiums included in the a count- of the Lands Allotment Company up to March 31. 1890. Mr. Roberts: Will you point one 'to me the false entries which you say Coldwclls partici- pated in making m the books of the Lands Allot- i me-ut Comp&ny? Witness: I cannot find in my information that I I have made any charge against Mr. Coklwells of having made such false entries, but mv com- plaint is that Mr. Coldwells took part in cer- tain transactions which enabled Hlt' Lands Allot- ment Company to carry into their books and accounts an improper profit. Re-examined, witness poinied out that Cold- wells had signed certain cheques in connection with the Lands Allotment Com j*tnv which had been used to show profits in 'their books. The court adjourned till Monday. STORY OF A TERRIBLE WRONG. In these words Archdeacon Sinclair describes the second annual report of the "Liberator Re- lief Fund." He writes:—"2,472 oases (fully one-half lieinar members of the, -Church of Eni- land, and attested by the clergy) are on the books of the fund, and between them they have lewt £ 700,000. To understand properly what this means it iiiii-t be liome in mind that the great majority of these ;KX>r peoj-le belong to the lalxmring classes, and tha-t a vei-y large numi*ir are aged, in many cases permanent in- Hie arohdeaoon expresses hie wonder I tliat better results have not followed the appeal which has been made, only £ 45.vX)0. out of the needful £ 100,000. having been subscribed. He sdds:—"It would not be easy to nnagrne a more pr^ssiug effort of charity than this. It has been made when hundreds and t>!iouj«Knds of humble homes were ruined (and that greatly through 'the influence of Christian names). and when sick and aged were brought to face the wo*- Vhouse, a fare against which they had all their lives been struggling. Four hundred and two of the destitute and ayerl have now, happily, been planed beyond the reach of want for the rest of their lives 1,800 others have been helped once, sometimes twice, in many cases a third and fourth tnpe hut the hon, secretary laments tha't f the work is little more than half done, ths't hun- dreds of old and infirm still fear that the ivork- house must be their ultimate doom. I would p'ead earnestly with your readers;to give before if is too late for these our poor sufltarlng brothers and sisters, especially at, a time when want is bitterly aggravated by the fierce severity cf the weather. All who can help, even in a. small degree, should forward immediately to the hon. secretary, the Rev. J Stockwell Waits, ?.&. Farriugdor--street, E.G., their cheque or P.O. to be fo-ule payabie to the 'Liberator' Relief Fund, and crossed 'City Bank.'

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