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Two Ankers of Whisky

This article is taken from a collection of Law Papers (1816-1859) by Charles Fraser- Mackintosh. The Library Reference is CFM3232   346.008

Due to the fact that they are Legal Papers, the language and syntax is, as apparently favoured by our legal friends, both cumbersome and repetitive. I hope this will not put too many people off, as I believe there are some interesting bits that would reward the necessary effort of perhaps reading through a second time.

Two Ankers of Whisky

George &c - Whereas it is humbly meant and complained to Us, by Our Right Trusty ALEXANDER MACONOCHIE of Meadowbank, Our Advocate, for Our interest, upon DUNCAN McDONELL, or McDONALD, son of Duncan McDonell, or McDonald, residing at Gartalie, or Lower Gartalie, in the parish of Urquhart, and county of Inverness; WILLIAM GRANT, farmer at Gartalie, or Lower Gartalie aforesaid; and ALEXANDER CAMERON, late soldier in the Inverness-shire Militia, now residing at Comar, in the parish of Kilmorack, and county aforesaid: THAT ALBEIT, by the laws of this and every other well governed realm, the feloniously ASSAULTING, BEATING, WOUNDING, and DEFORCING, any officer or officers of the revenue, when employed in the discharge of his or their duty, are crimes of an heinous nature, and severely punishable: YET TRUE IT IS AND OF VERITY, that the said Duncan McDonell, or McDonald, William Grant, and Alexander Cameron, are all and each, or one or other of them, guilty of the said crimes, or one or other of them, actors or actor , or art and part: IN SO FAR AS, early in the morning of Saturday the 22nd day of June 1816 years, or on one or other of the days or nights of the said month of June, or of the month of May immediately preceding, or of July immediately following, Gilbert Munro and Lewis Bayne, both excise-officers, residing at Dochgarroch, in the parish and county of Inverness, having gone on a survey of the ride to which they are attached as revenue officers, and having occasion to travel on the high-road leading past the house of Dochfour, or Davochfour, in the said parish and county of Inverness, did, near to the said house, fall in with the said Duncan McDonell, or McDonald, William Grant, and Alexander Cameron, and one or two other persons, driving a cart with one horse, said cart containing two ankers, which the said Gilbert Munro and Lewis Bayne were satisfied contained smuggled whisky; and the said Gilbert Munro and Lewis Bayne having intimated to the said Duncan McDonell, or McDonald, William Grant, and Alexander Cameron, that they were excise officers, made lawful seizure of the said ankers, horse, and cart, in the King's name; and were proceeding with the said horse, cart, and ankers, towards the house of Peter Mackenzie in Dochfour, or Davochfour, in the parish and county aforesaid, with the intention of lodging the said ankers in said house, until an opportunity should occur of conveying the same to Inverness; and the said Gilbert Munro and Lewis Bayne had proceeded a short way along the said road with the said seizure, when the said Duncan McDonell, or McDonald, William Grant, and Alexander Cameron, did all and each, or one or other of them, come up to the said Gilbert Munro and Lewis Bayne, who then had the said horse and cart and its contents in their possession, at a part of the said high-road a little to the south of the said house of Dochfour, or Davochfour, and in the parish of and county of Inverness; and they did all and each, or one or other of them, then and there feloniously endeavour to carry off the said horse and cart; and the said Gilbert Munro and Lewis Bayne having endeavoured to persuade them not to make any resistance, they, or some one of them answered, That they would rather part with their lives than with the whisky; and the said Gilbert Munro and Lewis Bayle, observing that they were determined to rescue the said seizure, drew the pistols with which they were armed, and threatened to make use of them if they did not desist; but the said Duncan McDonell, or McDonald, William Grant, and Alexander Cameron, still persisting in their illegal purpose, the said Gilbert Munro endeavoured to discharge his pistol at the horse in the said cart, but it missed fire; and the pistol held by the said Lewis Bayne having taken effect, the said horse was killed thereby; and the said Duncan McDonell, or McDonald, William Grant, and Alexander Cameron, did thereupon, all and each, or one or other of them, then and there wickedly and feloniously attack and assault the said Gilbert Munro and Lewis Bayne, and  did, with their clenched fists, or with sticks, bludgeons, or other weapons to the Prosecutor unknown, inflict many heavy and severe blows on the persons of the said Gilbert Munro and Lewis Bayne, and did pelt them with large stones, whereby the said Gilbert Munro had one of his teeth knocked out, and his nose bled, and the said Lewis Bayne received a violent contusion on the shoulder; and they were both otherwise injured in their persons; and the said Duncan McDonell, or McDonald, William Grant, and Alexander Cameron, continuing their violence, the said Gilbert Munro and Lewis Bayne were compelled to fly for the safety of their lives; and to abandon the seizure which they had made; By all which, the said Gilbert Munro and Lewis Bayne were assaulted in the execution of their duty as excise-officers, and severely beaten, wounded, and deforced; And the said Duncan McDonell, or McDonald, having been apprehended and taken before Mr Thomas Gilzean, Sheriff-substitute of the county of Inverness, did, in his presence, at Inverness, on the 22nd day of June 1816 years, emit a declaration, which was subscribed by the said Thomas Gilzean, and by Alexander McDonell, writer in Inverness, as sworn interpreter, on account of said declaration being enitted in the Gaelic language, the said Duncan McDonell, or McDonald, having declared that he could not speak English, and could not write; And the said Alexander Cameron having also been apprehended and carried before the said Mr Thomas Gilzean, did, in his presence at Inverness aforesaid, on the 14th day of August 1816, emit a declaration, which was subscribed by the said Thomas Gilzean, and by the aforesaid Alexander McDonell, as sworn interpreter, on account of the same having also been emitted in the Gaelic language, and of the said Alexander Cameron having declared that he could not speak English, and could not write; Which declarations, being to be used in evidence against the said Duncan MccDonell, or McDonald, and Alexander Cameron, on their trial respectively, will, for that purpose, be lodged in due time in the hands of the Clerk of the Circuit Court of Justiciary, before which they are to be tried, that they may have an opportunity of seeing the same; And the said William Grant, being conscious of his guilt in the premises, did abscond and flee from justice, and has not since been apprehended; AT LEAST, time and place libelled, the said Gilbert Munro and Lewis Bayne were assaulted, when employed in the discharge of their duty as excise-officers, beaten, wounded, and deforced; and the said Duncan McDonell, or McDonald, William Grant, and Alexander Cameron, are all and each, or one or other of them, guilty of the said crimes, or one or other of them actors or actor, or art and part. ALL WHICH, or part thereof, being found proven by the verdict of an Assize, before the Lord Justice-General, Lord Justice-Clerk, and Lords Commissioners of Justiciary, in a Circuit Court of Justiciary to be holden by them, or by any one or more of their number, within the Criminal Court-house of Inverness, on the 24th day of September, in the current year 1816, the said Duncan McDonell, or McDonald, William Grant, and Alexander Cameron, OUGHT to be punished with the pains of the law, to deter others from committing the like crimes in all time coming.

OUR WILL IS HEREFORE, &c

Dated and signeted 26th August 1816.  

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