Smuggling & Smugglers in Sussex - online book

An Account of a notorious Smuggling gang in the early 18th Century

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Old Mills never discovers it to any person, or uses any means to deliver him, which is a strong evidence of his knowledge of their design; and when Tapner declared he would be his butcher and cut him, Old Mills expresses no disapprobation of the murder, does not dissuade him from it, but desires him ' not to do it there, but carry him somewhere else first/ which shews his approbation of the fact; though to secure himself he would have had it committed at some other place.
" This, gentlemen, is the fact, which shews that securing themselves and their companions was not their principal aim; were it so, they would have murdered this man as soon as they had him in their power; but their motive seems to have been revenge, and a disposition to torture one who should dare to give any information which might bring them or their friends into danger.
"After hearing the whole evidence, if these men appear innocent, God forbid they should be found guilty; and I would not have the cruel circumstances of the fact incline you to believe anything we suggest that is not supported by the strongest proof; but if the fact is proved beyond a possibility of doubt to be in the manner we have stated it, I am sure you will do your duty, and by a just and honest verdict deliver your country from men so void of humanity."             »
The king's counsel having finished what they had to premise, proceeded to call the witnesses for the crown in support of the charge; the first witness called was Mr. Milner, collector of the customs at Poole, who deposed that about the 17th of October, 1747, he had advice that the custom-house was broken open ; upon which he hastened thither, and found the outer door burst open, and the other door broken in pieces; that
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