Benjamin Warby Cattle Case

20 February 1836 The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser

On Thursday last, Benjamin Warby of Campbell Town, was brought before the Magistrates at Sydney, on warrant issued on the affidavit of a man named William Bridges, which set forth that deponent had seen some cattle at Mr. Moore's farm on the Parramatta Road, which he identified as belonging to Messrs Hill, Roberts, and Badgery, which had been stolen from their station at Yass, and which he had been informed were placed at MR. Moore's farm by Benjamin Warby.

B. Warby was put to the bar, and admitted that the cattle had been placed at Moore's farm by him, and that he had voluntary engaged with Mr. Hill to give up any of the cattle which could be proved to belong to him.

Some time back, and before the committal of William Warby for cattle stealing, he (Benjamin Warby) had made a purchase of his brother's land, stock, and farming implements, and the agreement was drawn in proper form by Mr. Francis Stephen and regularly attested and completed in that gentleman's office.

In consequence he had take possession of the cattle, and it afterwards appeared, there were some stolen cattle in the herd; which however when claimed he (Mr. B. Warby) had given up, and also had offered, to give up any others that might be claimed by any person.

Under all these circum-stances he could not be supposed to have retained the cattle with any felonious intent.

H. O'Brien Esq. J. P. appeared to make application to the bench to have the cattle impounded, or at least to prevent any of them being sold until the matter was disposed of.

He did so on the following circumstances.

He was a magistrate at Yass, and a prisoner since committed was brought before and committed by him, for cattle stealing.

When William Warby was committed, it was represented to the bench that Benjamin Warby had claimed his brother's estate, and was collecting in the cattle for the purpose of removing them, in consequence of which the bench intimated to Benjamin Warby, that William Warby's cattle were seized by the crown, until examination should be made for stolen cattle, supposed to be in the herd, and Benjimin Warby was directed not to interfere with, or remove any of the cattle, until such search was made, notwithstanding which he had removed many of the latter, and brought some of them to Sydney for sale.

Several witnesses were called to prove that there were many stolen cattle in the herd, and that some of the stolen cattle had been removed from the herd by Benjamin Warby, Mr.Francis Stephen produced the agreement and sale between Benjamin Warby and his brother, and contended that no evidence was before the magistrates that could by possibility be construed into receiving the cattle knowing them to be stolen.

Even Mr. O'Brien stated that he did not charge Warby with any criminal intent, and merely made his application, to prevent the cattle, amongst which were supposed to be some of Mr, O'Brien's cattle from being sold or made away with until search was made.

The bench was of opinion that sufficient appeared on the evidence to warrant them in committing Warby, which was accordingly done and he was admitted to bail, himself in 200 and two sureties in 100 each.