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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 70


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TTHe unusual interest taken in this case, as shown by the presence in the Court of a large number of influential citizens and members of the legal profession (luring the three days occupied by the trial, and also the urgent request of a large number of Unionists and others, has induced us to make public in the form of a pamphlet, the notes taken on the occasion by our special reporter, Mr. E. J. Le Grove.

We have the more readily consented to do so, as we feel assured that the case deals with matters of more than usual interest to the public. In the first place, the question is discussed as to how far a trade-union may in its own interests interfere between employers and employed; then the question of the "sweating" system is introduced, and various definitions of the evil, as understood, are given; next, a careful perusal of the evidence on both sides, and the verdict arrived at, must to the mind of the thoughtful reader offer the suggestion that the advisableness of amendment in the existing law of libel is a question worthy of the immediate consideration of our legislators; and finally, it places before the reader this important question: "Is the retention of the present Special Jury system desirable as an adjunct to our progressive civilization?"

It is not our intention to offer an opinion, or in any way attempt to prejudice the mind of the reader. We simply place before the public a very full and thoroughly impartial report of the proceedings, of a large portion of which, owing to the limited space at the disposal of the local newspapers, it must at present necessarily be in ignorance.

We, therefore, now place ourselves in the hands of an impartial public, and rest content to allow it to judge us on the merits of the case, assuring it that in taking the steps we did, we were actuated by no personal motive, but merely by an honest desire to do what we, as trade unionists, conceived to be our duty.

The Publishers. Wellington.