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The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Taranaki, Hawke's Bay & Wellington Provincial Districts]


New Zealanders are invariably a law-abiding people. The colony has one policeman to every 1,375 of the population, and the cost per inhabitant is 2s. 10¼d. This compares more than favourably with the police service of Australia. Victoria has one policeman to every 798 persons, and the cost per head of the population is 4s. 6½d.; New South Wales, with one to every 599, costs 6s. 1¼d.; and West Australia has one to every 480, costing 10s. 7¾d. The laws in operation in New Zealand are in principle similar to those prevailing in England, and the administration of justice is also very identical. The judges and magistrates are men of high calibre and rectitude, and though the operation of invoking the aid of the law is very costly, the courts are entirely free from corruption. Three sessions of the Supreme Court are held annually at Napier, presided over usually by Sir Robert Stout, Chief Justice of New Zealand. The first sitting of the Supreme Court at Napier was held on the 8th of October, 1861.