« PreviousContinue »
Irish Act, 14 & 15 Vict., c. 93, applicable to the whole of the cases within the summary jurisdiction (except revenue and a few other cases which have their own peculiar laws), and giving an uniform mode for the preferring of the complaint to the final appeal against the justices' decision: (part viii. and portions of the previous parts).
4. Allowing a more simple mode of making complaints and issuing summonses, similar to that in the practice of County Courts; limiting the period for recovering local rates (now without limita tion) to twelve months from their dates; giving power to summon witnesses wherever resident, and to produce documents; to impose full amount of penalties, &c. upon each offender where several are concerned; to mitigate penalties and terms of imprisonment; to substitute imprisonment in gaol for the stocks; to permit sums, as distinguished from penalties, to be paid by instalments; to allow a deposit of money instead of sureties in certain cases; and to impose consecutive terms of imprisonment in those cases which are not provided for by 11 & 12 Vict., c. 43, s. 25: (part iii., part v., and parts v., and viii., sect. 67.)
5. Allowing proof of service of summonses and orders at a distance to be made by affidavit, obviating the necessity for constables being taken from their duties to attend the petty sessions solely to prove such service (part iv., sect 43.)
6. Providing that justices' warrants may be executed anywhere in England without being indorsed where executed, like those of the metropolitan police magistrates may now be (2 & 3 Vict., c. 71, s. 17), and as proposed in the Scotch Summary Procedure Bill of this Session, the present practice of getting warrants backed being a great hindrance to their execution: (part xii., sect. 122, par. 3.) 7. Providing an uniform scale of imprisonment in default of payment of all penalties, sums and costs: (part viii., sect. 68.)
8. Providing an uniform mode for the application of penalties to the superannuation, county or other funds, to informers (not being constables), &c., and removing the doubts as to the appropriation of penalties in certain boroughs: (part vii., sect. 77.)
9. Providing a summary mode before justices of estreating recognisances for appearance of parties at petty sessions, &c. (without going to the Quarter Sessions or requiring the aid of the sheriff), as
allowed in the metropolitan police courts in certain cases and in Ireland (part xiii., sect. 128.)
10. Providing a comprehensive series of short forms for the use of justices and others: (part xiv., sect. 137 and 2nd schedule.)
11. Substituting a record or register of decisions in each district of petty sessions for the present long and formal convictions and orders, which in future are not to be filed with the clerk of the peace, as this record, or a certified copy of any entry in it, is proposed to be evidence of a conviction or other decision: (part viii., sect. 66.)
12. Allowing an appeal in the cases now allowed, and in most others from any justice's decision upon the facts or law to the Quarter Sessions (as in the Irish Act, 14 & 15 Vict., c. 93, s. 24, and Metropolitan Police Courts Act, 2 & 3 Vict., c. 71, s. 50, Jervis's Act, 11 & 12 Vict., c. 43, containing no provision on that subject), and in all cases upon the law only to a Superior Court as now permitted by 20 & 21 Vict., c. 43;—with uniform provisions as to time of appealing, notice, recognisances, &c., in each mode of appeal : (part viii., sects. 73, 74, 75, 76.)
13. An improved procedure in preliminary examinations in indictable offences, now regulated by 11 & 12 Vict., c. 42, and providing for the receiving of evidence for an accused, and further facilities as to bailing, &c.: (part ix.)
14. Extending the present summary jurisdiction over certain indictable offences under the Criminal Justice and Juvenile Offenders Acts (18 & 19 Vict., c. 126, 10 & 11 Vict., c. 82, 13 & 14 Vict., c. 37) to frauds and embezzlements, &c., of a small amount, and enacting an uniform and more simple procedure than now exists by those Acts (part x.; vide G. C. Oke's letter in the Times of 12th May, 1864, hereon.)
15. Providing an uniform mode of appointing and convening special sessions, in lieu of the present circuitous one through the high and petty constables, and general powers of adjourning and holding special sessions, &c.: (part xi.)
16. Defining the tenure of the office of clerk to justices in counties similar to that existing in boroughs, with the disqualifications from acting for parties before their justices, and conducting prosecutions emanating from them, unless with the justices' consent or direction: (part ii., sects. 18, 21.)
17. Providing an uniform table of fees to justices' clerks of counties as well as boroughs (which now are very dissimilar) adapted to all duties they are likely to be called upon to perform, and to future legislation, similar to the table recommended in the commissioners' report on "Costs of Prosecutions," 1858-9; giving the Home Office power to alter the items from time to time, instead of the sessions or borough council, as now; also similar but amended regulations as to the payment of such clerks by salary instead of fees, as now allowed under 14 & 15 Vict., c. 55: (part ii., sect. 24, and 1st schedule; sects. 30, 31, 32.)
18. Giving the Home Office power to make an uniform table of fees and allowances for the service of summonses and execution of warrants by constables, the same now differing in each county: (part xiv., section 141.)
19. Providing for the recovery of justices' clerks' and constables' fees before a justice instead of in the County Court: (part ii., sect. 34; part xiv. sect. 141.)
20. Many of the general provisions of the Bill have, where it appeared necessary, been extended to revenue and other cases, advisedly excepted from many of its provisions, as was done by the 11 & 12 Vict., c. 43, s. 35, and 14 & 15 Vict., c. 93, s. 42 ; but the whole or other portions of the Bill may readily be adapted to all such cases if the revenue solicitors see fit: (part xiv., sect. 140.)
These are the main points of the measure, many of the new details of a minor character being omitted. Many other provisions might be usefully introduced, such as an amendment of the Parish Constables Acts, and the abolition of the office of high constable, whose functions have been gradually taken from him by the County Rate Act of 15 & 16 Vict., c. 81, the Juries Act, 1862 (25 & 26 Vict., c. 107), s. 3, and the remainder of them is now proposed to be done away by the Bill which dispenses with his services in reference to convening special sessions. He is now appointed by justices in special sessions under 7 & 8 Vict., c. 33, s. 8, which is the only section of that Act now in force, except sect 7, proposed for repeal in this Bill.
In the margin of the Bill reference is made to the Acts as
to the present procedure in England and Ireland containing the analogous provisions, or provisions relating to the subject of the clause; most of those in the English Acts being proposed to be repealed in the third schedule, clause 130. Where no section is mentioned in the margin of the provision, it is entirely new.
We ought to mention, as a new and useful feature in a Parliamentary Bill, that the present one has prefixed, in addition to the usual " Arrangement of Clauses," a "comparative Table of repealed Acts and new provisions," showing at a glance where the re-enactments or new provisions for those repealed are to be found in the Bill, or the reasons for their omission. This table will materially facilitate any critical examination of the proposed enactments; at the same time it shows the care and labour which have been bestowed by its framer in maturing what we think will be found on perusal to be one of the most important measures of law reform for the consideration of the next Session of Parliament (as we understand, it has been introduced in order to its being considered by the magistracy during the recess), and we doubt not that its provisions will generally receive the sanction of the legislature; for the details of which must necessarily be entrusted to those who are practically acquainted with the working of the present system.
We may add, that Mr. Oke, in a circular which he has issued to the Magistracy and their Clerks, invites suggestions upon the provisions of the Bill before the close of this year.
ART. VIII.-TWISS AND WHEATON ON INTERNATIONAL LAW.
The Law of Nations considered as Independent Political Communities—on the Rights and Duties of Nations in Time of War. By TRAVERS TWISS, D.C.L., Regius Professor of Civil Law in the University of Oxford, and one of Her Majesty's Counsel. London: Longman, Green, & Co.
Elements of International Law. By HENRY WHEATON, L.L.D. Minister of the United States at the Court of Prussia, &c. Second annotated Edition, by WILLIAM BEACH LAWRENCE, Author of Visitation and Search, &c. Boston, U.S. London: Sampson, Low, & Co. 1863.
THE treatises at the head of this article possess a special interest, not only for the statesman and the jurist, but also for the community at large; the one being the result of English, the other of American learning and research. Mr. Wheaton's work on International Law is so instructive, and is so universally known and appreciated, as to be considered the standing text-book on that intricate subject, and thus it has been adopted by our Inns of Court as the means of instruction for legal students. This results from its clear but comprehensive style. It is what it professes to be-an elementary work. The annotations of Mr. Lawrence in this edition, bearing on the unhappy conflict between the Northern and Southern States of the American Continent, give it an additional interest at the present day. Dr. Twiss's volume is of a more recondite and philosophical nature; its title denotes its character," The rights. and duties of nations in time of war." The learned author truly describes his work in his preface, when he says that, "History, in its relation to the rights of war, may be truly said to be philosophy teaching by examples;" following out that principle, Dr. Twiss gives an historical account of the