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I could frame a rule much more specious equally plausible & as appears to me much [equally or] more reasonable
by which 3/4ths of the criminals who are convicted, shall be acquitted to say nothing of those who are
acquitted<add> so already I sho could say, for instance that a man (who should be presumed innocent according to the common rule
till he is duly proved to be guilty) should not be condemned together upon the testimony
of many villains & felons, & who have deserved death, & been guilty of a
crime in the estimation of law worse than perjury upon their own shewing: whose lives depend as a condition
on their giving such evidence whereby he shall be convicted.

This rule being deservedly reprobated, and persons under that predicament received every day as
evidence without any inconvenience, I see not why the expediency of requiring the <add> expediency of reprobating the</add> sufficiency of one of two witness of
in Treason can be maintained, unless it be these two likewise maintained as a general proposition + + without reference to those at present coming under that description or to any other in particular that persons having
for the time being the management of prosecutions on the what part of the Crown are more likely to be greatly
of subordination, than felons by their own shewing swearing to care their lives, are of Perjury II II It may be said that there is generally some other unexceptionable evidence as of the person robbed. But consider what this evidence usually refers to.
Only the fact of the robbery felony - which in comparison is nothing - the identifying the the fixing it upon him in contradiction to all mankind person which is e every thing, belongs to the witness evidence, especially concerning felonies committed in the dark - If it were not the very gist of the matter to which their evidence applied, they would not be admitted.
; that the difference
between the probability of their success of the case of the admitting the one evidence
to be sufficient & that in the case of the requiring two is so great as to induce
great a danger of the suffering of innocent persons so great as to exceed the danger
threatening the state from the so much impunity of offenders of this class. the
consequence of such a requisition — With respect to which latter proposition we
must not omitt to observe; that the disposition here between the contingent mischief to the state
from the suffering of persons innocent on the one hand, & that of impunity to the guilty on the other, is much
greater here than in those other crimes; by how much more the mischief of Treason
is greater than that of other crimes.

If we would wish have to have a shirking conclusive proof of the inexpediency of this provision
we can not look for one more so the opinion of those very persons the very men who made
it. — Scarce had they it seen the light, when they found recognized the necessity
of breaking thro' it, & through it they did break — That necessity appeared to them
great, that not to pull down instantly with one hand what they had just been
building with the other, to attain their purpose, they betook themselves, to the
irregular extraordinary & odious expedient of a Privilegium, what what a Law made against
a single individual to punish him for a fact passed, because he was not punishable
without it. In this way by 8th W.3 c.4 [Vol.10] was Sr John Fenwick
attacked of High-Treason I v. for his The Parliamentary History.: for that the evidence of <add>in favor of his Guilt had operated
so through a conviction on the majority of so numerous an assembly, tho' cons-
of the testimony of but that against correcting their former judgment from this accession of experience one person, that got they took this extraordinary step

Identifier: | JB/051/022/001
"JB/" can not be assigned to a declared number type with value 51.


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evidence; procedure code

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evidence number





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jeremy bentham


[[watermarks::j honig & zoonen [lion with vryheyt motif]]]


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