74 SUSSEX SMUGGLERS.
broken open ; the smugglers who did it, on their return, passed through Fordingbridge, where Chater saw Dimer among them; and having declared, so was obliged to make oath of it; on which information Dimer was committed to goal for further examination : and on the 14th of February, Chater was sent by the collector of Southampton, in company with Galley, with a letter to Mr. Battine, Surveyor General of the customs, in order that Chater might see if the man in goal was the same person he saw at Fordingbridge.
" These two men, having enquired their way at the New Inn at Leigh, one Jenkes undertook to direct them, and carried them to widow Payne's, at Eowland's Castle, who saying she feared they were going to do the smugglers some mischief, sent for Carter and Jackson, Steel, Eace, Eichards, Sheerman and Howard, whor having made Galley and Chater drunk, and seen the letter to Mr. Battine, consulted what to do with them. Some proposed to murder them, others to send them prisoners to France, and others to confine them, till they saw what had become of Dimer, and to treat them as he was dealt with.
" Having sent Jenkes away, these poor men were left absolutely in the power of the smugglers ; and indeed, into worse hands they could not have fallen ; had they been taken in battle they would have had quarter, and been treated with humanity ; had they fallen into the hand of enemies of those nations who give no quarter, their lot would have been immediate death ; but as it was their hard fate to fall into the hands of smugglers, to have neither quarter or immediate death, but they were reserved to suffer the most cruel usage for several days and afterwards murdered.
" These poor wretches, after having been beat and