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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 78

Obviously Bogus

Obviously Bogus.

Dr. Findlay's denial came a little too late, for the fatal admission had already been made in answer to Question 618 above quoted, and it had also been made in 1887 and 1895. Incidentally the candour of the witness's answers to three consecutions is worth noting:—(1) He couldn't have brought blankets with him to Meikle's, because it was a mile out of his way to Mataura; (2) nevertheless, it was not out of his way to go there to sharpen his knife; (3) nevertheless it was exactly in the opposite direction! Three such simple questions in succession could hardly have been better handled. But the main point is that, even after Dr. Findlay's broad reminder, Lambert was unable to suggest any other explanation of his visit than that which counsel's interjection plainly proclaimed to be imgossible. "I do not know exactly. I took the knife up there."

Lambert's ignorance on so vital a point is unfortunate, but he has surely said enough to enable us to fill the gap. Between page 26 7 and 9 o'clock on the night of the 1st November Lambert called at Meikle's for the alleged purpose of sharpening his knife in order to kill sheep at Islay Station, seven miles away. That a station which ran 2500 sheep did not possess a grindstone was not suggested by counsel for the Crown, nor by either of the Commissioners. But to make the false pretence the more transparent, Lambert, instead of taking the knife to Islay that evening, went a mile back on his tracks to the hut, and thence ten miles or more to Mataura. Are not these three inferences inevitable ?—
(1)That the pretext which Lambert gave for his visit to Meikle's that evening, and which he has repeated at every subsequent opportunity, was a bogus one.
(2)That the real object of his visit was something which has not dared to disclose.
(3)That when he "took the knife up there" he took something else with him that was of a good deal more value to him for the purposes of his employment than a knife.