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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 70

The Subjects of Enquiry and the Evidence

The Subjects of Enquiry and the Evidence.

The subjects of enquiry that were supplied to be investigated under the circumstances just mentioned were, according to your memo, to me—
1.The conduct of Murphy while holding the appointment of Road Overseer in Rotorua District;
2.The truth or otherwise of the statements made by the natives as mentioned in the Justice file; and
3.Certain monetary transactions in which Murphy is concerned.

With this last matter I shall deal separately, as it was so determined to be dealt with by you.

Now seeing that Murphy held the position of Road Overseer for about two and a half years, and no specific acts of misconduct as Overseer in that time were charged, it will be at once seen the immense disadvantage in which Murphy was placed in having to answer the hundred-and-one malicious statements that might be trumped up against him by evil-disposed persons within such wide limits of time.

In a judicial experience of twenty-one years, I have never known an accused subjected, as in this—Murphy's—case, to the same page 10 difficulties of having to meet unknown and unformulated charges, suddenly sprung upon him by any of the general public, who, voluntarily, or by general invitation advertisement, might choose to air their grievances against him or vent their spleen upon him, and especially were the difficulties increased in this case from the fact of the witnesses—and many of them Maoris—not being on oath, and only bound to answer what they liked. To those who have had experience of Maori testimony there can be only one opinion, even when given on oath—its utter untrustworthiness. But how much more untrustworthy must it be when, as in this enquiry, it was not accompanied by any such solemnity, and no judicial compulsion or surroundings, Now viewing, however, the first matter above mentioned as a charge, i.e, Murphy's suggested "misconduct whilst "Overseer," I assume this is meant to be alleged misconduct as Overseer, As to this, I submit there is not the slightest evidence—and the answer to such a charge, expressed or implied, is complete. The best judge of Murphy's conduct as Overseer, or whilst Overseer, was surely Blythe himself. Where, I ask, has Mr. Blythe ever even reported Murphy? If there be any departmental report by Mr. Blythe or by any other officer over Murphy, this can be produced. But there is no such report, and none was ever even mentioned at the enquiry; but on the contrary it will be found, most probably, that the Department contains records commendatory of Murphy's abilities and industry as an Overseer, I submit it is an extraordinary and unheard-of proceeding to question the conduct of an Overseer upon the mere opinion or gossip of ., the man in the street," Can the mere statement of two or three of the general public—even assuming they were quite unbiassed (which in this case they are not)—who may choose to come forward and say a public lit servant has been—to put it in the strongest form—idling his public time, be of the slightest weight against the fact that that servant was under the immediate supervision and control of an Engineer as his superior officer, who had the best means of observing and knowing his official conduct? Another thing, if Murphy was not utilizing properly his public time, or conducting himself otherwise than as a faithful and dutiful public servant, why did not these persons, if any, who are so zealous in the public interest after Mr. Blythe's death communicate these matters to him before? or, if they did tell Mr. Blythe, how is it there is not a scintilla of evidence to show that he even made any complaint or remonstrance with Murphy? The position is this: either they told Mr. Blythe or they did not. If they did, the responsibility rested with him to take action, and in his mind there was no truth in the complaint, if any, as he did not take any action. If they did not tell Blythe, then it argues strongly, amongst other things, the non-existence of any ground of complaint, What would become of the whole public service of the colony if such village stories were always to engage the attention of the departmental ear? Many instances will readily occur to your mind where if such gossip were listened to, the public and private character of public servants might with facility be unjustly page 11 destroyed after the death of their superior officers who had held them, as in this case, in the highest estimation for ability and public industry. The first topic of investigation in this enquiry, which I have just been alluding to, is so intimately connected with the second that my criticism on the evidence covers and applies to both grounds

As you are aware, the bent and purport of the whole Maori and European testimony intended to be adverse to Murphy, was in effect that he ordered two natives (witnesses in this enquiry) to do household work in Government time and paid for by Government money; and a strong suggestion of undue familiarity or intimacy between Murphy and Mrs. Blythe, and that, in consequence, Government time was misspent or wasted. This is practically the whole story—native and European. No dates are fixed by a single witness against Murphy, not even periods or months can be mentioned, and the utmost vagueness prevails all through their testimony. But assuming even that this testimony were un-contradicted (instead of which it is uncorroborated and contradicted), besides the absurdity on the face of it, the answer which I have before stated is also, I submit, a complete and conclusive answer to the whole allegation. If natives were employed in household work repeatedly at Mr. Blythe's residence—if Murphy ordered this to be done, and there was undue familiarity between him and Mrs. Blythe, causing him therefore to waste an undue proportion of Government time, then this all must have been known to Mr. Blythe, Murphy was residing in Mr. Blythe's house for eighteen months or more, then if household work so done in Government time and paid for accordingly, were of frequent occurrence, as alleged, it must have been known to Mr. Blythe, with whom the responsibility would wholly rest. Such work could not, as one native witness (Pararaki) had the temerity to say teas done for a certain time in every month for about twelve months, have taken place with this constant regularity without Mr. Blythe knowing it, and if so, the accusation falls with sole weight upon Mr. Blythe and not on Murphy, for the presumption would be, even if the story contained any truth, that the work was done under Mr. Blythe's implied, if not express instructions. But this allegation about household work in Government time will be seen to have been distinctly and solemnly denied by Murphy, and such denial is corroborated by Mrs. Blythe, as will be seen in the evidence for the defence.

Now as to the undue familiarity between Murphy and Mrs. Blythe? The general and conclusive answer to this is that the accusation is a most false and malicious slander of the characters of both Mrs. Blythe and Murphy, as well as a foul calumny on the memory of the late Mr. Blythe, because if there were any truth in the statement, the impropriety must have been known to Mr. Blythe, who had the power to get rid of Murphy, to turn him out of his house, or to move the Department for his dismissal, or to transfer him to another part of the Road District, but the evidence of Mr. Butt—a witness called against, but proved to be for Murphy— page 12 and that of Mr. Taylor, a Justice of the Peace, shows quite the contrary, as they both solemnly declare that three or four days before his death Mr. Blythe spoke in the highest terms of praise of Murphy as a good overseer under him, saying he was "very "fortunate in having such a good overseer," and expressing his kindly regard for him as a man. Besides, we have no evidence that Mr. Blythe ever told any white man anything disparaging the virtue or conduct of his wife in any way, but on the contrary, we have the strongest documentary evidence, which are exhibits in the enquiry, viz., the memo, to Mrs. Bly the (29th July, 1891), saying she is a "faithful wife" and that he is "proud" of her and respects her, etc., etc. Also the birthday book containing the eulogistic reference to his wife, dated the 16th December, 1891, or a little more than a week before he died. He had many intimate European friends in Rotorua to whom he would have confided anything, and yet one Maori is the only person to whom he confides any suspicion about his wife. The thing is worse than absurd—it is a wicked lie. I submit that the foregoing general argument would in any Court of Justice be a complete answer to the whole case against Murphy without any further or particular criticism of the evidence, because if the alleged improprieties are untrue, the whole case falls to the ground, I will, however, as concisely as possible, analyse the evidence and show its utter worthlessness. There were nominally seventeen witnesses called presumably to give evidence against Murphy. Of these no less than ten were Maoris, the remainder being Europeans. Of these seven European witnesses one was (Scott) the husband of one of the Maori witnesses. Arama Karaka (who as already mentioned is brother-in-law to Mr. Dansey, Clerk of the Courts and writer of the defamatory letter before alluded to) and the two boys, Tamati Poruru and Sam Hodge, as the evidence discloses, arc related; and Ihaka Marino and Wiripini are husband and wife; and two witnesses (Mr. Butt and Gus Higgins) proved distinctly to be witnesses in favour of Murphy, Higgins contradicting in direct terms all the material parts of Yates' testimony.

The following are the witnesses called against Murphy, viz., Pararaki, Arama Karaka, Tamati Poruru, Sam Hodge, Wiripini, Tamati Moko, Mrs. Scott, Ihaka Marino, Yates, Timotuha (all Maoris), and Bell, Griffiths, Dr. Ginders, Moore, Butt, Higgins, and Scott (all Europeans), From this apparent array of witnesses two (Butt and Higgins) must be deducted thereby reducing the total number of "Crown witnesses" (we may for brevity sake call them such) to fifteen, of whom, as I have mentioned, ten are Maoris, and five of these closely related. As opposed to this array there were twelve witnesses, all Europeans of the highest respectability, and adding Mr. Butt and Higgins we have the total array of witnesses for the defence, numbering fourteen, alt residents in Rotorua, viz., Murphy, road overseer; Taylor, merchant and J.P.; Ryan, Government road man; Young, bootmaker; McCrae, hotel proprietor; Lorrigan, blacksmith; Hollierhock, Roman Catholic priest; Williams, accountant and storekeeper; Mayes, Cobb's coach driver; Keys, page 13 builder; Miss Reeves, domestic servant; and Mrs. Blythe, Mr. Butt and Higgins. In mere numerical quantity the defence was about equal, but in point of truth and reliability decidedly overwhelming. You will remember how well justified was my vain protest in the beginning of the enquiry, that Mr. Dansey's bias against Murphy precluded him from being your clerk and interpreter, in relation to the sinister and suggestive notices he sent to the natives to give evidence (which are attached to the papers), you even remarked that they were in very "strange" form, as the natives were in effect, requested to come and give evidence on the side of the Government "as to Murphy's evil-doing, and that their expenses would be paid for their attendance." One might be almost justified in calling these "hired witnesses," but there is at least in such a notice sufficient motive and inducement to natives, of by no means high moral grade (as in Rotorua), to shape and give evidence as requested. It is my duty also to comment on the very irregular course you almost invariably pursued in your examination in chief of the "Grown witnesses," by plainly indicating the nature of the evidence you expected, notwithstanding my repeated remonstrances, your reply to me being that you would put the question in the form you thought necessary to "come to the point at once without beating round the bush." The danger of such a course is manifest, but though you were good enough to allow many of my protests to be recorded, this line of examination became so constant and established that I wearied of objecting.

Now to deal with the evidence of the "Grown witnesses "brought against Murphy, and taking the Maori witnesses first, it is a significant fact that in the case of nearly all the native witnesses they each profess to speak to separate and different occasions or circumstances, that are not corroborated, and in any case where corroborative evidence was affected to be brought it turned out to be either untrustworthy or absolutely contradictory of the principal witness, or absolutely false. Taking them in order, we come to

Pararaki: This is a native who, like many others that have a grievance against Murphy, had to be "knocked off" work at times by the latter on account of not performing it properly. Pararaki has also been brought up to the Police Court on a charge of attempted suicide, and also convicted of disorderly conduct and using obscene language. It also transpired in the evidence—though he declined to deny it—that he was known in Rotorua as "Tommy the Liar," and the character of the testimony he gave at this enquiry to my mind fully warranted the soubriquet. He told a lie when he said he had worked the whole of December, 1891, on the Maketu Road, when, as the pay-sheet would show, he worked on an entirely different place, called the "outlet," He lied when he stated that "all "his work at Blythe's house was connected with household work, "such as cleaning saucepans and feeding fowls," for in cross-examination he admitted he had done fencing, cutting trees, making stable-floor, and cutting ti-tree stakes for Government work, at or near Blythe's residence, which, it must be remembered, is Government page 14 property. He also lied when he stated that on the 22nd December, 1891, he was about town all day trailing for his wages, and afterwards admitted that he was at work up to the 23rd December, 1891, and that "I did not have to wait an hour for my money"; and again, when he said he bought five shirts from Sirs, Blythe, and afterwards said, Yes, I bought the shirts from Murphy, and not Mrs. Blythe."

In the same way I could go through his evidence and point out numerous instances of deliberate falsehood, showing clearly that his reputation for untruthfulness was well-founded.

One need hardly trouble further with his evidence, which from the foregoing instances should be condemned and wholly discarded. Yet this was one of the chief witnesses against Murphy, not only in this part of the enquiry, but also in what are called the "money transactions." Now Pararaki's testimony amounts to this:

1, That he was ordered to do household work, such as cleaning saucepans, by Murphy, presumably in Government time, and that Mr. Blythe found fault with him; but he contradicted himself in the next breath, because he says Mr. Blythe told him "he would be paid for his work all the same," Therefore, according to his own showing, Mr. Blythe sanctioned this kind of work. Pararaki further in cross-examination said that there was not a month out of the twelve or fifteen months that he was doing Government road work that he did not spend some portion of his time at Blythe's residence doing household work. If this were true, Mr. Blythe must have observed and sanctioned it, and he, and not Murphy, is alone responsible for it. Pararaki's testimony, which is uncorroborated, is contradicted by Murphy and Mrs. Blythe (whose solemn declarations are surely worthy of more credence than the bare statement by one native), who positively declare the statement to be an absolute untruth, and that Pararaki never did any household work except rarely after his working hours, chiefly after one o'clock (the knock-off time), on Saturdays for which he was paid privately by Mrs. Blythe, either in money or clothes or goods. Murphy further in his evidence avows that his instructions from Mr. Blythe were to keep the private time separate from the Government time, and this he (Murphy) always strictly carried out by returning on every occasion the correct Government and private time, distinguishing one from the other, Pararaki gives no dates whatever, and cannot fix anything definite, nor can he tell us what he was paid for any of this household work. To credit this particular statement of Pararaki would be practically, on his sole uncorroborated statement, to charge Mr. Blythe and Murphy with conspiracy to defraud. But we shall see the value of his bare statements when I deal with the next, viz.,

2. That Mrs. Blythe and Murphy kissed in the dining-room of Mr. Blythe's residence. This is the statement in his statutory declaration in January last; but in this enquiry he contradicted this statement by saying that it did not take place in the dining-room, it was in an adjoining room called the school-room (it page 15 should be remembered that Mr. Blythe's residence had been a native school and teacher's residence combined). In his former declaration he said nothing about "plucking a fowl," but now has changed the locus of the room, and adds for the first time the additional circumstance about "plucking a fowl." which would be unlikely to take place in a dining-room as he at first declared. This is, of course, another falsehood. Then again, in his written declaration he stated that he had his back turned; but in this enquiry, seeing the lying impression he might convey by saying that he saw two people kiss when his back was turned, he clearly tells another lie by saying he twisted his head slightly round. This is "the only thing he ever saw." and this alleged occurrence is uncorroborated, because he says no one else was present but himself, Murphy, and Mrs. Blythe, who both deny and denounce the statement as a wilful and wanton lie. Is it likely that the kissing would have taken place with a native in the room? The story is again a falsehood.

3. Pararaki next alleges that Blythe was drunk on one occasion about two months before his death, and that he told Pararaki that he would give him £10 to catch Murphy and Mrs. Blythe at their "evil doing," and after he became sober he repeated the reward. Here is, I submit, another "lying make-up." In the first place, those who knew Mr. Blythe best aver that they never saw him drunk at any time. Next Pararaki says, as usual, there was no one present. Mr. Blythe, of course, is dead, and if alive, would, no doubt, deny the whole occurrence, otherwise he would belie all his avowed confidence in his wife. The statement is, therefore, uncorroborated, Moreover, Pararaki was never, he admits, paid his reward. If the "kissing" he relates in the last allegation just dealt with, took place before the offer of the £10 reward, why didn't he mention this "evil "doing" to Blythe, and demand some money? If it took place after the offer of the reward, why, also, did he not communicate the occurrence to Blythe, and lay claim to the bribe? Why wait till after Mr. Blythe's death to tell this? The answer is, that nothing of the kind ever took place—neither the offer of the reward nor the kissing—and that this whole statement is a slanderous fabrication.

4. Again, Pararaki alleges that on one occasion Mrs. Blythe said to him: "Don't take any notice of Mr. Blythe or I shall discharge you." This was also said when no one else was present. On the face of it, it is an absurdity, and a lie, for Mrs. Blythe had, of course, no power to discharge him, and she had no cause to do so if she had the power, for he admitted in cross-examination that he had not said anything to Mrs. Blythe about his conversation with and promised reward from Mr. Blythe. Therefore there was nothing to cause her to say such a thing. Moreover, when you, Mr. Mueller, asked him, "How should she discharge you when she was "not your master?" he was unable to offer any explanation. There are many other contradictions and absurdities in Pararaki's testimony, but I submit it is sufficiently clear that his statements should be rejected as ridiculous and false.

The next witness is Arama Karaka. It will be borne in mind page 16 that this is the Maori witness whose sister is married to Mr. Dausey3 the Clerk of the Court, who wrote the letter already alluded to, charging Murphy and Mrs. Blythe with being morally responsible for Mr. Blythe's death, and asking that Murphy's conduct be brought under the notice of the Surveyor-Geneial

Arama Karaka's statutory declaration was—that in December, 1891, he was out horse-hunting in the neighbourhood of Blythe's residence, and near the public road, where he saw Murphy, in broad day-light, lift Mrs. Blythe up by the "hips, and throw her above his ., head three times, and kiss her." It is worthy of note that the word "hips" was used in the declaration, but in this enquiry he positively asserted that it was by the "waist" he caught her. It is an extraordinary and unvarying feature, according to the natives' testimony, that Murphy always took the most public place and opportunities to indulge in these familiarities. Unlike the other witnesses' testimony, Arama Karaka alleged he could corroborate his statement by the two native boys that accompanied him on the occasion, Of course Arama Karaka stated in his declaration that he made the declaration quite voluntarily; and the native witnesses all avowed this. They all declared also in this enquiry that they had never spoken to native or European about this matter; some of them even going so far as to say that they had not even spoken to their husbands and wives. This, to anyone knowing their nature, character and habits of "talking over" everything is an untruth. This must have been impressed on yourself (though unacquainted with the native character) to a ridiculous extent when the native boy, Sam Hodge, was under cross-examination. He told me, in reply to my question, that he had spoken to Arama Karaka, "but not about this;" and so on. I took him through most of the persons who had given or were supposed to give evidence against Murphy, and he had had conversations with all of them, "but not about this."

To proceed, however, with Arama Karaka's testimony, He also stated that what he described had occurred in December, 1891, about two weeks before Chris tin as, but had not taken place on a Sunday. He further stated that Murphy lifted Mrs. Blythe over a mud wall, yet, strange to say, he could not say whether or not all this took place in the fore or afternoon, and I must not forget to add that he said the boys were with him when the occurrence was witnessed—these two native boys, Poruru and Sam Hodge were called, with the object of corroborating him—but what do they say? They describe seeing some persons on the road in question "kissing," but they were from two and a-half to five chains away; they did not know whether the woman had a veil on or not They could not say if she was dressed in black or white; they could now say how the man was dressed, even the colour of his hat they did not know. Now as to corroboration of Arama Karaka. Arama Karaka says it was not a Sunday, Sam Hodge says positively it was a Sunday and Poruru says he does not know what day it was. It also occurs to me that if it took place on a Sunday there was no waste at least of Govern- page 17 meat time, but, in any case, where is the corroboration? Is it not rather the most direct contradiction? If Sam speaks the truth then Arama Karaka must be telling what is false and vice versa, the same with Poruru. Arama Karaka says Murphy lifted Mrs. Blythe over the mud wall, and Poruru says Murphy extended his hands to her and assisted her on to the wall. Again, Arama Karaka says it took place before Christmas, 1891. Sam says he did not know what month it was, and Poruru did not know whether it was winter or summer. All these discrepancies on material points in this testimony are the surest indication of its utter untruthfulness. But to put this beyond doubt I draw special attention to evidence adduced by the defence on this incident, declared to by Arama Karaka, and that given by these native boys, to show its worthlessness. We have the emphatic denial by Murphy and Mrs. Blythe that they were not at the place at all mentioned by Arama Karaka, and their solemn corroborating and denying evidence must be accepted as conclusive against the contradicted testimony of Arama Karaka, by the two boys, and the contradictory evidence between the boys themselves. Besides, would people be so insane as to take an open thoroughfare to carry on such demonstrative and grotesque familiarities as lifting or "throwing" Mrs. Blythe above his (Murphy's) head?

Moreover, the following incidents and circumstances must damn the whole testimony of these three. In the first place, the peculiar—or as you call it, "strange"—suggestive notices written by Mr. Dansey were handed to Arama Karaka to notify to the boys, which I have no doubt he did effectively. Next, after Arama Karaka was some time in the witness box giving his evidence, an old native man named Te Kowhai, the father of the boy Poruru, and who had evidently been in Court during Arama Karaka's evidence, was heard by the Rev. Father Hollierhock schooling these boys on the evidence. Here is Father Hollierhock's evidence on this point: "Yes, I saw Kowhai at the Court House, He is the father of "Poruru. I saw the whole of the witnesses who were ordered out of Court sitting on the ground, but I did not at first recognise the "boys. I heard them speaking about some places being about, five "chains apart from' so and so, and five chains from the bridge.' knew that the evidence given in Court was being repeated to the faces of those who were ordered out of Court. I said to them, in "a friendly way, that they were not allowed to do such a thing. Te "Kowhai then said he was doing it lest something should happen to his children,' i. e., the two boys Poruru and Sam, Then I recognised the boys there. . . . I am sure that at that time Arama Karaka was in the box, and that it was the evidence which was being detailed by Kowhai, who was schooling the children in it," This evidence by Father Hollierhock is confirmed by what one of the boys, Poruru, reluctantly had to admit in cross-examination, viz., that "Te Kowhai was there" (outside the Court among the people), though young Sam denied it, and "He said nothing to me beyond saying 'Be strong.' I don't perhaps know what he meant by it."

page 18

Could anything be more conclusive that the two boye had been schooled, and that they told lies about it. Finally to prove this, observe what Mr. Keys in his evidence says: "I spoke to Sam "Hodge, who was a witness in the enquiry, about the evidence he "had given here, Hodge told me that Arama Karaka was not with him on the Sunday he spoke about. Poruru was in my employ, and he said he gave such evidence because Arama Karaka had made him." I must not forget to mention the further incident that on the very morning of the day they were to give evidence they were together with Arama Karaka on Mr. Dansey's premises for some time, a very significant coincidence, when it is remembered that Mr. Dansey was the clerk and interpreter taking down the evidence at the enquiry, that Mrs. Dansey is Arama Karaka's sister, and that she was seen sitting down amongst the natives outside the Court, We have not far to seek for Arama Karaka's motive for giving this lying testimony himself and suborning the boys to do the same, for out of his own mouth he admitted in cross-examination that Murphy, acting as a faithful and conscientious overseer, condemned certain fascines he supplied which were not according to specification. Arama Karaka wanted to be paid for 500, at 4d. each; whereas Murphy said there were in any case only 417, and recommended he should be paid only 2½d. each for them, as they were not according to specification, and Mr. Blythe paid him accordingly. In consequence of this, Arama Karaka admits he was very angry with Murphy. Further comment is needless to show that the evidence of Arama Karaka and the two native boys is false.

Passing on, to Mrs. Scott, a native woman (married to a pakeha), who, it was rumoured, would give details of a great scandal between or about Murphy and Mrs. Blythe, It must be remembered that Mrs. Scott was another native who received the peculiar and pressing invitation to come and give testimony for the Government as to the "evil doing" of Murphy and Mrs. Blythe, etc. Now, what does the scandal turn out to be, even according to Mrs. Scott? That Murphy drove out to Waiotapu (where Mrs. Scott had a sort of accommodation house) in a waggon or buggy with Mr. Webbe (Mr. Blythe's survey assistant) and Mrs. Blythe and her niece, a girl of about seventeen years of age. They brought out survey tools, pegs, provisions, and requisites for Mr. Webbe's survey camp. Whilst waiting for lunch Murphy, Mrs. Blythe, and her niece together strolled along the road to the lake, Mrs. Scott says that she (Mrs. Scott) called out to Murphy, Mrs. Blythe, and the niece to come to dinner, and whilst they were coming (she says) "I went again to" tell them to be quick; then I saw the two of them embracing, "I was on a little rise. They were kissing." This "embracing" Mrs. Scott explained was simply putting his arm round Mrs. Blythe's neck, and kissing her, Mrs. Scott related this occurrence to her husband (Mr. Scott), who told her practically to mind her own business, I submit that the story is one that cannot be believed, It is not corroborated by any other eye-witness, and it is denied absolutely by Murphy and Mrs. Blythe, whose two solemn declara- page 19 tions are overwhelming and, certainly, conclusive against the sote uncorroborated statement of Mrs. Scott. But apart from this, the surroundings of the alleged occurrence all controvert the truth of it. Even if true, how is the Government service prejudiced, or the Department scandalized? Murphy, as he states in his evidence, had to wait till his horse had a feed (the journey was twenty miles each way) before he could do the return journey to Rotorua, so there was no waste of time. But that the kissing took place is untrue. Mrs Scott cannot tell the month or the day of the week that it happened. Moreover, it was in the middle of the day, the place was public and open, There were no trees, she says. She (Mrs. Scott) had called them to their dinner, so that the knowledge that she was about would naturally be a deterrent. Furthermore, Mrs. Blythe's niece was with them, a girl of seventeen years of age, before whom Murphy would not be likely to carry on any familiarities with her aunt, Mrs. Scott is also contradicted in another material point. Both Murphy and Mrs. Blythe declare that there was no calling to dinner by Mrs. Scott; that as a matter of fact they (Murphy and Mrs. Blythe) were back some time before the meal was ready, and they support their statement with the additional circumstantial proof that Mrs. Blythe was nursing Mrs. Scott's baby outside before dinner, and had to come inside the "where" because it was raining. Mrs. Scott, of course, denies this, but it is declared to by Murphy and Mrs. Blythe. Mr. Webbe, who had dinner at the same time, though a Government servant, is not called to corroborate Mrs. Scott in these latter points, or to contradict Mrs. Blythe or Murphy.

Then Mrs. Scott makes several other statements which are of an extraordinary and absurd character and should not, as I ineffectually protested at the enquiry, have been listened to, and these were a lot of alleged conversations with Mr. Blythe (deceased), viz.:—(1) That Mrs. Blythe had now become a Catholic and he (Blythe) was very "pouri" or sorrowful about it; (2) That she had opened his Government letters; (3) That Blythe said Murphy and Mrs. Blythe slept together and that he knew it; (4) That Blythe said when he got to Rotorua he would report Murphy to the Department, advising them to dispense with Murphy's services; (5) And that Blythe and Murphy had a great quarrel on account of Mrs. Blythe. I have already mentioned evidence in this enquiry clearly refuting all these allegations, and it is an extraordinary thing how such "stuff" could have interested your patience sufficiently to tolerate it going down on the notes, you, yourself, expressed the opinion that there was nothing in the matter of Mrs. Blythe opening Government letters. That was frequently a matter of necessity with Government officers away from home. Indeed, it transpired that Mrs. Blythe had replied to an official letter you, yourself (Mr. Mueller), had written to Mr. Blythe, so I pass over what was intended in Mrs. Scott's mind to be a disclosure of great enormity. As to Mr. Blythe's anger about Mrs. Blythe becoming a Catholic, also there can be no truth in this. The presents of Catholic prayer books and page 20 crucifixes to his wife, the going to church with her, the decorating and photographing the Catholic church a few days before he died, his visiting and sending for Father Hollierhock, all show conclusively that there could be no truth in this alleged sorrow of Ely the on this account. As to Blythe reporting Murphy and getting him discharged, there can be no truth in this either, for where is it shown that Blythe ever did so? Does not the evidence of Mr. Taylor, Mr. Butt, Mr. McCrae, Mr. Williams, and others, all respectable citizens, and most intimate with Mr. Blythe, speak emphatically of Mr. Blythe's uniform praise of Murphy, both privately and as his overseer, up to the very last hour of his life? What, then, becomes of Mrs. Scott's testimony? Again, as to the alleged quarrel between Blythe and Murphy, there is nothing in this, as she stated in cross-examination it was about a horse. Her husband (Mr. Scott) who could only speak to this quarrel as an ear-witness, says himself it was about a horse. Mr. Murphy, in his evidence, explains this alleged quarrel clearly by saying there was only a misunderstanding in consequence of this (some more of Pararaki's lying), viz.,:—Pararaki had told Mr. Blythe about ill-treating a certain horse by taking it too long a journey. In Murphy's own words: ., There was no "anger." he says, "between Mr. Blythe and myself. I merely de" fended myself against the charge of cruelty; which was an untruth "by Pararaki, and I made an explanation to Mr. Blythe and he was quite satisfied," and that this is the truth is shown by the fact that Mr. Blythe and Murphy sat down to dinner at Scott's after this supposed rage and quarrel, and shortly after drove home to Rotorua together. Mrs. Scott's evidence is not worth the trouble it has taken to prove its wicked untruth. But, worthless as her testimony was, her husband's, from a judicial point of view, is the greatest rubbish that could be submitted to a court of enquiry, and I protested against its reception at all. I was surprised and could not help fueling that the Department were pressing hard to make a case against Murphy, when you admitted Mr. Scott's evidence, which was simply what his wife had told him had happened, and what he said to his wife, and what the dead Mr. Blythe was supposed to have said to both of them when no one else was present. It was perfectly absurd and ridiculous. The only serious part of it is that I suppose that all this sort of testimony brought against Murphy will have to be paid for by the Crown, I need-not go through Mr. Scott's testimony, which was simply a sort of muddled echo of some parts—only some parts, of his wife's. In many respects he omitted a lot that his wife spoke to, and in others varied from her statements or intensified it greatly, especially when describing the quarrel between Murphy and Blythe, which he said he feared would be so bad that he told his wife to remove all the knives and tomahawks lest there might be bloodshed. As we have seen, this threatened bloodshed ended in Blythe and Murphy having their dinner together in a few minutes after the so-called row began, and they drove off home in the same buggy shortly after. You will remember that Scott questioned his wife as to the evidence she had given at the page 21 enquiry (he gave his evidence last), and he said she "dwelt upon the kissing business," showing that the whole thing was well rehearsed between Scott and his wife. I must not forget to remind you that when his evidence varied from his wife's he said, "I think my wife is more likely to be correct"; and finally, you will remember when Scott's evidence was read over to him he said the latter part was wrong, but he immediately continued, "Let it stand." What sort of conscience must a witness have who feels his evidence is "wrong" and lets it stand so? I need hardly observe that the Scotts could fix no dates any more than the other "Crown "witnesses."

Leaving the Scotts, I pass to Wiripini—one of the four natives making the statutory declarations—and Tamati Moko. Though Wiripini's testimony deals with all incidents quite distinct from the other natives, and all uncorroborated, yet as to one act of kissing between Murphy and Mrs. Blythe, she affects to produce a corroborating witness in this Tamati Moko, We shall see the value of his evidence. I understand that the Maori language contains no word expressive of "gratitude," and, judging by Wiripini, there is none in the Maori nature. Wiripini seemed to have been the special object of Mrs. Blythe's kindness. She was allowed to come in and out of Mrs. Elythe's house whenever she liked, had meals there, received food and clothing for herself, her husband, and children frequently; yet after Mr. Blythe's death, Wiripini denies that all this was Mrs. Blythe's good nature, but that it was through Blythe only.

Passing over this black ingratitude, let us see what this Maori woman alleges. Her testimony is, of course, no less extraordinary than that of the other natives, and like the rest, of course, she avers she had no communication with anyone eke about the subject matter of the enquiry—not even did she speak to her husband. She also evidently came prepared only to substantiate her previous declaration of January, 1892, as she was disinclined to be cross-examined except on it, especially when she was examined as to the truth of the statement she then made that Mr. Blythe had accused her (Wiripini) of committing adultery with a roadman. I shall show later on from this witness that she is not to be believed; but I will meantime deal with her statements. She says shortly this: (1) That before Murphy came to live at Blythe's, Mrs. Blythe was always crying when Blythe was away, that the tears would be streaming down her cheeks, and she would be swaying her body to and fro; but after Murphy came this all ceased. She, of course, says there was no one else present but herself when Mrs. Blythe would be crying like this. My only wonder is that she did not add that whenever Murphy went away Mrs. Blythe used to cry for him, for I believe if she had thought of it she would have had no hesitation in emphasizing the absurd statement with that addendum. It took place, she says, several times, though she could not fix the date of a single occasion, But the story is wholly an untruth, for in addition to Mrs. Blythe's contradiction there is the fact that Mrs. Blythe's page 22 two nieces, grown-up girls, were residing with Mrs. Blythe during all the period Wiripini indicates, so that Mrs. Blythe, who had then been married about ten years, could hardly be said to be lonely, even if Mr. Blythe were away. And further, as it happens, Mr. Blythe is declared to have been at home during all the period she mentions. So much for the truth of this statement. But in any case, is this a disclosure affecting Murphy to the extent of depriving him of his appointment? Then she alleges (2) she saw Murphy and Mrs. Blythe kissing in the room "where the plates are washed." They could not see her, she says, but she could see them, and the door was "wide open." As usual, there was no one else present. In cross-examination she says it took place after tea, at which, I believe. Wiripini had been present; but in any case she says both Murphy and Mrs. Blythe must have known she was about. Here, again, we have the extreme improbability of Murphy and Mrs. Blythe doing this, knowing this native woman was "about," If this familiarity existed, how does it always take place when there is a native near?

Moreover, when she was asked how the door was hung that she saw through, she described it quite the opposite to the fact, The sketch of the door has been put in as an exhibit, plan marked, I think, "B." According to this she makes out the door to be hung on the jamb that it is not hung on, and to open in the very opposite direction to what it does actually. You (Mr. Mueller) have not perhaps seen the door in question, but I have personally inspected it, and speak with certainty as to Wiripini's error in this respect. (3) I pass over as a foul calumny the abandoned conversation in which Mrs. Blythe is supposed to have said to her about "wishing" to be near Murphy." She says no one was present but themselves when Mrs. Blythe said this, Such a bare and vicious statement is beneath comment, and, indeed, Mrs. Blythe's specific and indignant denial of such a conversation ever taking place, was needless, Wiripini then says (4) that one day (and she tries to make it circumstantial by fixing it on a Thursday, a washing-day, but how long ago or what month she cannot tell) there was a quarrel between Blythe on the one side, and Mrs. Blythe and Mr. Murphy on the other. "It was a very angry quarrel." she says, "because (though she does not know what, it was about) she heard such running through the house." Now, Mrs. Blythe declares that there never was such a quarrel; it could not have been. Moreover, it is contradicted by the fact, as stated by Mrs. Blythe, that her washing-day was Friday, and not Thursday. In cross-examination Wiripini states that she was sitting on the ground outside the window, and I (Mr. Tole) having inspected the premises, say it is a physical impossibility for her, in such a position, to have seen Murphy and Mrs. Blythe, as she says, standing near the fire-place. Murphy, also, declares there is no truth in the alleged quarrel, But even if true, why or how should it affect Murphy? The story is so absurd and meaningless that it is a waste of time to criticise it.

Passing on, however, to another statement, which she states is corroborated by Tamati Moko, viz., that they both saw Murphy page 23 and Mrs. Blythe kissing in the porch of the residence. She says the porch door was wide open, It could be seen by passers-by on the public road. She does not know what year, month, or day in the week, this was supposed to take place. Of course, Murphy and Mrs. Blythe deny all about it; but such denial is hardly necessary, because the whole surroundings show the improbability of it. Here we have Murphy and Mrs. Blythe taking the most conspicuous means, at a wide open door, in broad daylight, of kissing in a porch, when one step out of the porch into the adjoining room would have put them wholly out of view. Yet they must wait till Wiripini and Tamati Moko were looking at them from the front gate, opposite the porch, to do this act.

Now as to Tamati Moko, brought to corroborate Wiripini about this porch scene. His evidence must be wholly rejected, as he wilfully lied. He began with a lie, and ended with one. He said this alleged occurrence took place whilst he was engaged ploughing for Mrs. Blythe, in September, 1891. I pressed him about this date, as I told him I intended to contradict him, He declared positively it was September, 1891, and I produced the receipted account of Mr. Robertson, showing that he (Robertson) had done the ploughing in September, 1891, thus proving Moko to have declared falsely in this. Then he denied the conversation he had with Murphy to which I (Mr. Tole) and Mr. Lorrigan were witnesses, in which he said, "Don't be afraid, Murphy; I won't hurt you when I go to the "Court" Mr. Lorrigan, its you know, was called and testified to Tamati having said the above. You have also Murphy's statement, and you have my own solemn declaration [Exhibit "P."] before a Justice of the Peace in Auckland, confirming the above statement as to what Tamati Moko said on this occasion, so that it is not too strong language to use when I say that his testimony should be absolutely rejected as perjured. And in like manner the following incident, testified to by Mrs. Blythe and Father Hollierhock, conclusively discredits Wiripini's testimony, apart from the fact of it being uncorroborated, viz., that on the first day of January, 1892, the day before she made her statutory declaration before Mr. Dansey (2nd January, 1892), she came to Mrs. Blythe to condole with her after Mr. Blythe's death and told Mrs. Blythe her "heart was very dark" on account of Yates saying that I know something about you and "Murphy, but I know nothing." Mrs. Blythe told her that she (Mrs. Blythe) "was in trouble and could not attend to her, "and that she had better tell Father Hollierhock who was outside." Wiripini did see Father Hollierhock, and this is his evidence: "It "was the day after the inquest on Mr. Blythe's body, i. e., the first of "January, '92. She (Wiripini) was greatly excited and said her heart 4i was very dark because of certain statements a certain half-caste "had made in the Court the day before at the inquest. He said he "had one witness who could corroborate his statement. She "thought he meant her. She said she knew nothing evil of Mr. or "Mrs. Blythe; they had always been kind to her." I need not pursue Wiripini's testimony further. It is clear she was suborned page 24 to make statements which she previously expressed an ignorance and a horror of, and her whole testimony must be classed with that of her would be corroborating witness, Tamati Moko, as perjured.

Now I come to Ihaka Marino. This is Wiripini's husband, and like the rest of the natives who declared before Mr. Dansey, says in his statutory declaration that he gives it "quite voluntarily" and also like the rest of course avers positively that he never spoke to a single soul, not even his wife. about the enquiry or anything in his evidence—a protestation which cannot be believed. You will also remember that he denied that he prompted Wiripini, his wife, when she was making her solemn declaration, which is contradicted by Mr. Williams who was in court and saw him distinctly prompt his wife. This Ihaka Marino is a witness who saw almost nothing, but his imagination and conclusions were so fertile and reckless that in his case you (Mr. Mueller) hinted to him that he should only speak of what he saw.

To take his statements. The first is that Murphy drove Mrs. Blythe out to the Pareheru Road where he (Ihaka) was working, and that he saw them go into the bush at the side of the road, but he saw nothing improper. As you (Mr. Mueller) said at once, "There is no crime in even going into the bush "—much less is it A "disclosure" on which to blast a man's and a woman's character, orto deprive him of his livelihood. It is useless to dwell on Ihaka's confusion and lying about when this occurred, except to give a sample of the kind of evidence given in the enquiry. He says "I went the next "morning to Pareheru after getting instructions from Blythe, Murphy was not in the district at the time." (How could he have been at Pareheru then?) but he goes on: "It was "December, 1890. Stop; I answered too quickly; it was in 1889. "No; I am wrong; it was 1888." It turns out Mr. Blythe was then (1888) not in the Rotorua District at all. Now, the explanation of this incident about driving to the Pareheru road is clearly and plainly given in Murphy's and Mrs. Blythe's evidence to this effect, that Murphy having to go out to this road, to show Ihaka how to make the culverts, was asked by Mr. Blythe to drive out Mrs. Blythe for the benefit of her health, she having been ill, and the previous bad weather preventing her from getting out. Though Ihaka states Blythe was away at Taupo Mrs. Blythe and Murphy show that Mr. Blythe was at home, because whenever Blythe went to Taupo, or any other long distance he almost invariably took the buggy used on this occasion. Government work or time was not prejudiced by this drive to Pareheru, as Murphy's evidence shows he worked there many hours, except while at lunch, which was taken at the side of the road. They declare they never went into the bush at all. Murphy and Mrs. Blythe's testimony should be carefully read, as it completely refutes all these calumnies. Murphy would have had to go to the road that day in any case; and is the Government service prejudiced at all by his driving instead of riding out there under Mr. Blythe's instructions, and even taking Mrs. Blythe? It must be remembered that Murphy and Mrs. Blythe positively declare page 25 that on no occasion did they drive together without the express instructions or sanction and knowledge of Mr. Blythe. Even if it were not so, there does not necessarily follow any impropriety or neglect of duty.

2. Ihaka next says, without the slightest attempt at corroboration (though it is all solemnly and patiently taken down), "That on other" occasions he saw Murphy and Mrs. Ely the pinching each other." This, I believe, is a Maori form of courtship, but which I should think would hardly he practised by Europeans. He cannot fix any date when this took place, and it is denied by Murphy and Mrs. Blythe.

3. On another occasion, he does not know what day or whether it was on a Sunday, Ihaka says he saw a European man name it Protheroe knocking at Blythe's house. Protheroe got no reply, and he (Ihaka) went to the door, knocked, and immediately Murphy came and asked what he wanted, when Ihaka said he wanted to see Mrs. Blythe, and Murphy said she was in the room. Ihaka goes at once through the house to this room, and Mrs. Blythe rises from a sofa with a shawl around her. In his statutory declaration in January, 1892, Ihaka drew an improper inference from this; but he did not dare to do so at the enquiry. Now, here is a story Wholly unsupported by any other witness. Mr. Protheroe lives in Rotorua, but was not called to give any testimony whatever. Mrs. Blythe mentions that on a Sunday Mr. Protheroe brought a box of photographic negatives for Mr. Blythe. She took them from him. This was the only occasion on which Protheroe came to the house while she was there, and that Ihaka never came to the house on that occasion, nor on any occasion did she rise from a sofa to meet him. Moreover, she declares there was no sofa in the dining-room. Murphy states he has no recollection of the incident, but denies it, and also that Ihaka ever knocked at the door of Blythe's residence in his life. He and his family had free access to the house-Murphy also says there was no sofa in the dining-room, But even so, where is there any impropriety chargeable to either Murphy or Mrs. Blythe; or how can it possibly be worthy of Departmental question or enquiry.

Ihaka says (4) that he cleaned out the fowl-house, water-closet, and did household work. The answer which I have submitted in Pararaki's case applies here, viz., that he never did such work, except before or after Government time, and he was paid or remunerated privately, and not by Government money (see Murphy's and Mrs. Blythe's evidence). Generally as to Ihaka and his evidence, I may say his motive for speaking thus against Murphy was because, as Murphy states in his evidence, "He blamed me for "keeping him out of a contract, Mr. Blythe gave lhaka's brother "in-Jaw, Edward, a contract, because after what I told him he (Mr. "Blythe) declined to give it to Ihaka, I asked Mr. Blythe not to "give him one as there would be too much trouble to get him to "finish it properly, Mr. Blythe told me he would not give it to "Ihaka, but to his brother-in-law, I used my influence with Mr page 26 "Blythe to prevent him getting the contract, as there would be "everlasting bother with him. Ihaka has not spoken to me for "several months, and he has not been a permanent 'man for more "than a year" (see Murphy's evidence, which shows clearly Ihaka's motive of hostility).

As to Timotuha's statement about Murphy shaking Blythe. This is unworthy of notice in fait? of the strong relations of friendship between Murphy and Mr. Blythe up to his last hour. As to Yates' testimony, I might treat it in a similar manner. But as he is a half-caste, and has been a sort of evil genius in the enquiry—present throughout—taking notes, intimidating witnesses (see Father Hollierhock's evidence), and has made such a formal, brutal, indecent indictment not only against Murphy but Mrs. Blythe, that I cannot refrain from showing that he deserved more than his friend Pararaki, the soubriquet of "Tommy the "liar," Horsewhipping would be too respectable a punishment for his coarse and malicious falsehoods. He leads off his evidence by saying that he had a grievance against Murphy, as he was kept out of Government work during the whole of 1N91, explaining the motive for his animus, and in the rest of his evidence he showed himself to be a mean, skulking eavesdropper, as well as maliciously untruthful. You (Mr. Mueller) remember how he was shown by Messrs. Young and Ryan, and Father Hollierhock and others, to have lied when he said that Murphy was full of drink on the 27th. December, 1891; also, how he was contradicted by the very man (Gus Higgins) who he said was his companion and could corroborate him about Murphy "easing himself of his liquor "in the immediate presence of Mrs. Blythe and the little girl with her; also, how Gus Higgins contradicted him about changing hats, viz., that the suggestion came from Yates, and not from him (Higgins); also, how Mr. McCrae, proprietor of Lake House and Palace Hotel, proved Yates to have told a deliberate untruth when he said that he (McCrae) had to lift Murphy on to a sofa in the Palace Hotel on account of him (Murphy) being so helplessly drunk. Yates' testimony, therefore, I submit, must be treated as a tissue of lies from beginning to end—for, if a person lies in one respect, his evidence must be wholly disregarded. So much for the Maori testimony.

I now come to the European witnesses. Vague and shuffling as was the Maori testimony, the European was as bad, if not worse, with a good deal of animus added. Why they were called it is difficult to understand, except to heap up, and conjure into fact what was mere surmise, hearsay and gossip. Take Sir. Bell, the first witness. As in other cases, I objected to your "leading" method of introducing the subject of the inquiry and the object of his testimony.

Passing over this and mentioning the fact that he worked six weeks at Blythe's, the character of his evidence was as follows in reply to your questions (I take it from the notes);—"I fancy there "was something wrong between Murphy and Mrs. Blythe. I never "saw anything particular. I noticed Mrs. Blythe wipe the buggy "seat for Murphy when it would be damp, did not see similar page 27 "attention to Blythe. I don't know anything more than that. I "never saw any improper behaviour between Murphy and Mrs. "Blythe." Then he said the hardest work Murphy did was "driving "Mrs. Blythe about." This is one of Mr. Bell's sneering exaggerations or untruths like his statement, that during the six weeks he was working at Blythe's, Mr. Blythe may have been at Taupo a dozen times, each trip taking nearly a fortnight, Moreover, Bell is contradicted not only by Murphy and Mrs. Blythe, but also by Mr. Williams, who visited Blythe's place a dozen times whilst Bell was working there and hardly saw Murphy there at all the whole time; he was away at work. Bell also himself says, "I never saw Murphy idling for a day. Blythe was there also. "Never heard Blythe say anything about Murphy idling. I guess "Mr. Blythe would be just the man to complain if Murphy was "not doing his work properly." This evidence, I contend, shows nothing against Murphy, but was rather in his favour.

The next witness is a Mr. Griffiths, ostensibly proprietor of The Hot Lakes Chronicle. He seems to have taken the Public Service under his patronage, and exercised a watchful supervision over its officers, as well as being a sort of village censor and "busybody," He admitted sending his paper to all Government departments, and especially marked paragraphs to the Survey Department. He was in the Railway service of the colony, and sometime after an enquiry in which he was concerned he retired. Recently he was reprimanded by Inspector Emmerson for interfering with the Inspector's police duties, Griffiths wanting, at a local race meeting, to take charge of the police and distribute them "properly." He also wrote two paragraphs in his paper adversely commenting by innuendo upon Murphy and other road-men; and the first untruth that strikes one in his testimony in the enquiry is when speaking of one of these paragraphs (July, 1891, I think) he stated that Mr. Blythe, in a conversation with him (I objected to this kind of evidence, but without effect), expressed his (Mr. Blythe's) approval of it, that it was but too true, and hoped he (Griffiths) would in the future put in his paper anything he thought proper criticizing the actions of his (Blythe's) staff or road-men. This seemed, even to you, such an extraordinary thing for a Government officer in charge to say or do, that you considered "It is very strange." I say it is not only strange, but it is an absolute untruth and a fabrication, This is shown plainly by Murphy's evidence, in which he states that "Mr. Blythe was extremely angry about the "paragraph; that it was meant for a hit at him (Blythe), and not at me (Murphy); that it was very bad of him (Griffiths) after what he had done for him, backing his bill to the amount of two hundred pounds; that he (Mr. Blythe) ordered Mrs. Blythe not to deal in the Griffiths' stores." This is corroborated by Mrs. Blythe, and does not look like the warm approval Griffiths speaks of. Moreover, this significant fact is plain, and admitted by Griffiths, that no such or similar paragraph appeared in his paper from that time till After Blythe's death, when little page 28 carping and insulting paragraphs directed against Murphy or Mrs. Blythe appeared again. I produced some of these as exhibits, which bear malice and insult in every line, He displayed this feeling in giving his evidence in chief, which was a sort of set speech, and in his expressed determination not to be questioned by me, I have rarely seen such malice displayed by any witness. I have already noted the instance of his communicating with Mr. Broham about the inquest. Another instance of his hatred and malice must be fresh in your memory, when in the witness-box he asked for a drink of water. The constable left the Court to get some. Murphy happened to leave the Court about the same time. On the return of the constable with the water, Mr. Griffiths declined to drink any of it, saying he preferred not to "trouble the other side." meaning, I suppose, that Murphy or myself had had some baneful influence on the liquid produced, But, returning to the nature of Griffiths' testimony, it simply amounts to his having seen Murphy and Mrs. Blythe walking or driving through town and near the Sanatorium; that Blythe (dead and unable to contradict him) said to him that he (Blythe) was to blame for not putting his foot down with Murphy; that he (Blythe) gave Griffiths the "impression of being under Murphy's thumb;" and he (Griffiths) thought this an occasion when everyone should come forward and give statements clearly, pro bono publico. Yet when he is asked to give an explanation about Blythe being under Murphy's thumb, he said "I cannot give any reason." When asked what day in the week or the month, whether Sunday or not, that he saw this walking and driving, he could not say. When pressed for particulars of this kind, or the number of times he saw the walking or driving, he could not tell, like the rest of the witnesses. He says it was generally in the "afternoon," As it happens, this fits in with Murphy's explanation, which I shall presently refer to. When asked how often he saw Murphy in the buggy outside the Sanatorium, after a good deal of pressure he says, "I am certain I saw the vehicle "outside the Sanatorium once, which." he adds, "took place eight or nine, certainly over six months ago," Now, I submit the evidence already alluded to flatly disproves that such conversation between Blythe and Griffiths about "putting his foot down with Murphy" could have any truth, as Blythe thought too highly of him as an overseer. As to this "under thumb" business, this must be all the emanation of a wicked and suspicious mind. In Murphy's evidence he stated he had lent Blythe £150 for Government work (as Mr. Blythe had exceeded the vote for a particular work) until the same was properly authorised; but Murphy got his money back, without asking interest, and the whole transaction was known to the Department. Other than this there is no evidence of any obligation of consequence by Blythe to Murphy, As to Murphy walking with Mrs. Blythe, his explanation is clear and emphatic. He says he may have walked from church a few times with her, and also with Mrs. Blythe and her niece; and on another occasion he went to a public entertainment with her, by page 29 the instructions of Mr. Blythe, who preferred to stay at home that evening to attend to another niece who was recovering from typhoid. So much was attempted to be made about Mrs. Blythe leading on Murphy's arm that I thought it necessary to bring out the explanation, viz., that Mrs. Blythe's ankle was broken, which always necessitated leaning on the arm of anyone she might be walking with, as she has in walking with myself (Mr. Tole), As Murphy states, "I have never walked out with Mrs. Blythe in Government "time—not once. The Government has never lost one half-hour "by my walking out," And this is not rebutted by anything Griffiths or anyone else has stated, for he or they cannot fix any hour or day in the week, and there are many hours in the week that are not Government time, e.g., after five o'clock, and Saturday afternoon, and Sunday, when, I presume Murphy might walk out with whom he liked without being brought to task by the Department, But I repeat here, the answer to all this is that Murphy was under Blythe, and surely he was the proper judge of Murphy's conduct, and responsible for his (Murphy's) official diligence; and therefore the Department are, in all reason debarred from raising the question, as the presumption and the facts are all in Murphy's favour.

As to Murphy driving Mrs. Blythe about, I will now refer to this in dealing shortly with Dr. Ginders' testimony. You are aware that he is the doctor in charge of the Sanatorium; that for months he had attended Mrs. Blythe for a severe illness, and under medical treatment in his house also for six weeks; that he received a large sum of money for such treatment; that he also attended Mrs. Blythe's niece for three or four months when in typhoid fever; that subsequently Mrs. Blythe took music lessons from his wife, and ultimately went to smother teacher, Yet he did not think it unprofessional, or against good taste, to volunteer testimony on this occasion, conveying defamatory inferences of wasteful attention by Murphy to Mrs. Blythe, His evidence, however, turned out under close examination, to be a miserable fiasco; for after stating he had seen them driving frequently to or near the Sanatorium, it turned out that he saw the buggy onceoutside, and he once only saw Murphy in his kitchen, between three and four o'clock in the afternoon, waiting, he believed, for letters from Mrs. Blythe for the post. And it is important here to note that this must be the same occasion as Griffiths saw, so that Murphy's clear explanation given in reference to Griffiths' testimony in this respect applies to Br. Grinders, Murphy says (see his evidence), "It would only be on a Tuesday after, "noon. It would be on public business. I would be going to the "post for the mail, and when I got it, I had to go to Mrs. Blythe, "at Dr. Ginders', with it, Mrs. Blythe opened the letters, and "enclosed what she saw fit in an envelope for Mr. Blythe, and then "I went and put that envelope with my report in an envelope, "which I posted to Mr. Blythe. I have only driven Mrs. Blythe "six times to the Sanatorium the whole time I have been in Rotorua, "and altogether I have not driver, her anywhere more than about a page 30 "dozen times, and always by the instructions, or with the sanction "and knowledge of Mr. Blythe." The Doctor also mentioned that Murphy had driven him frequently, "daily" I think he said, when Mrs. Blythe's niece was ill with typhoid. This, as you will see by both Murphy's and Mrs. Blythe's evidence, cannot be true, and the Doctor said he would not "be surprised that he was in error with regard to all dates and times." Murphy and Mrs. Blythe say Murphy did not drive the Doctor more than five or six times, But in any case Blythe was at home and it was done under his instructions, and there ends the matter. These drivings did not take so much as an hour each, and altogether would not amount to more than 7s. 6d. worth of Government time, which would not surely be begrudged in helping to save a life.

Moore's evidence I shall not comment on, He is an attendant in the Sanatorium. He purports to describe a midnight row between Blythe and Murphy, but there is no one to corroborate him, and the whole story is absurd. Now, with regard to the evidence for the defence, I have introduced most of it already in refuting the Crown case (such as that is), but I must not forget to mention the important evidence of Miss Beeves (a domestic servant and a Protestant), who lived five months in Mr. Blythe's house while Murphy was there, and declares in a manner, that must have impressed you (see her evidence), that Mr. Murphy's demeanour to Mrs. Blythe was courteous and respectful—like that of a servant. "I never," she says, u on any occasion observed any familiarity between Mr. "Murphy and Mrs. Blythe," The evidence of Mr. Mayes is also important, as showing that on many occasions he has seen Murphy starting to work at five o'clock in the morning, and on other occasions coming home late at night from his work. This has an important bearing in relation to Murphy's zeal for his work, and also making up for any time lost in going for the mail. The Government, as Murphy says, "always got out of him more than "regulation time." He never spared himself where Government work needed his attention, no matter how it inconvenienced him. Having reviewed the evidence I must say