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The Fifth Report Fees, Gratuities, Perquisites Ireland

18/03/1807

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The Fifth Report Fees, Gratuities, Perquisites Ireland

Date of Article: 18/03/1807
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tnfitieriei.] ON FEES, GRATUITIES, & c. 33 pending any Further Proceeding for such Penalties; since which Time, and ' Appehfo, 56. until the latter Part of the Year 1805, notwithstanding several successive Alterations, for the Purpose of amending the Law, Very few Penalties have been levied, and those mostly upon the District of Ennis; the increased Amount, however, of the Penalties recovered in the ollowing Ye£ r> manifest the Commencement of greater Exertion. The Sums stated in the annexed Account, under the Heads of Rewards to ^ ^ ( Revenue Officers, Constables, Military, and Yeomanry, comprize small ppen °' 4 " Bounties, given under the Regulations of the Board for the Seizure of un- Appendlx'No' licensed Stills, Still Heads, Worms, See. Returns of these Seizures are made to the Board Quarterly, in a printed Form, and certified by the Collector n^^' s. of the District; particularizing the Persons employed, the Time when upon Service, the Number of Stills, & c. seized, the Subsistence Money paid to Military and Constables, the Place where seized, and from whom; and containing Columns for the Remarks of the Officer, and for the Collector's Report on each Seizure. After the Examination of this Return, the Board make their Order on the Collector for the Payment of the Rewards; One- half Appendix, No. 60. of which has, within the last Two Years, been withdrawn from the Officers in Cases unaccompanied by the Conviction of the Parish, or the Distiller. It appears, that the Returns do not in general contain such Particulars of the Appendix, No. 58* Seizure, as may enable the Board to judge of the Propriety of commencing Prosecutions against the Townlands or Parishes; artd that such Prosecutions, undertheir Directions, seldom take Place, unless where Officers are specially sent out by the Board for the Purpose of detecting unlicensed Stills. To render the Operation of the Law prompt and effectual, we recom- mend, that these Returns should be made more frequently, and always con- tain such Particulars as might enable the Board, in every Case,.£ 6 judge of the E xpediency of directing a Prosecution; and that Copies of all Informa- tions before Magistrates should be sent up, in order that such as it might be proper to proceed upon should be selected j for tve think it highly im- Appendix, No. ri. probable, that out of 469 Informations brought forward at the last Summer Assizes ( of which 174 failed) 113 could have been quashed for Informality, jf the Cases had been submitted to previous Consideration; such a PfetaQ' tion would tend both to prevent the Recurrence of frequent Failures, and the unprofitable Expenditure of the public Money. There is Ground for suspecting the Seizure of unlicensed Stills to be in Appendix, No. 61. many Instances preconcerted; and that the Distiller stipulates to afford the Opportunity of making a Seizure, upon Condition of the Officers forbearing Appendix, No. 44, to proserute. We cannot, except on the Supposition of some Compact of this Nature, account for the extraordinary Disproportion between the Num- ber of Seizures made, and of Informations brought. It might therefore, possibly, be advisable to extend the Principle already acknowledged, in the Appendix, No. 60. partial Reduction of the Rewards, by adding to the present Amount of them, where the Seizures are followed by Convictions ; and in other Cases with- drawing them altogether from the Officers of Excise. We have dwelt the more fully on this Part of the Subject, because we are pursuaded, that the Frequency of Convictions, especially of Individuals concerned in unlicensed Distillation, would be amongst the most probable Means of effecting its Suppression. Notwithstanding the Severity of the Laws in force against unlicensed Distillation, they do not appear to have answered the End proposed. 44- J It
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