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Haradhan Maiti Vs. Queen-empress - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectCriminal
CourtKolkata
Decided On
Judge
Reported in(1887)ILR14Cal513
AppellantHaradhan Maiti
RespondentQueen-empress
Cases ReferredReg v. Hillman
Excerpt:
forgery - intention--penal code, section 466. - .....the prisoner, and there being in fact no woman with child to whom it was intended to give the drug for the purpose of procuring abortion. in that case the same question arose, namely, whether the offence of supplying a drug to obtain abortion was committed when there was, in effect, no intention to obtain abortion. in that case the judgment of the court was given by sir william earle, who was then chief justice, of the common pleas, and than whom no greater authority, ever sat on the english bench, and what he says is : 'the question asked of us is whether the intention of any other person than the defendant is necessary to the commission of the offence made punishable under this statute (24 and 25 vic., c. 100, section 59),. we are all of opinion that that question should be.....
Judgment:

W. Comer Petheram, C.J.

1. This ease of Haradhan Maiti is a case in which Mr. Justice Ghose and myself had doubta as to the legality of the conviction, because we felt that a question might arise whether, upon the facts which were found, the offence of forgery had been committed, I do not think we had any doubt that the facts were correctly found by the assessors and the Judge, and that the conclusion of facts at which they arrived was correct; the only doubt we felt was whether those facts amounted to a crime.

2. The facts of the case are that in some town a person resided who was suspected of being a professional forger, and upon that suspicion the Sheristadar of the Judge's Court and the police set a trap to catch him, and the trap which they set for him was that they took him a notice which had been used in some suit and asked him to prepare a notice like it, that is, to make an exact imitation of it in that form, only changing, one or two names, and they told him that their object in having the imitation of the notice made was that it should be used in the proceedings in a certain case for the purpose of deceiving the Court; so that they employed him to forge, or rather to make, a document for the purpose, as he understood them, of its being used to deceive the Court.

3. It is perfectly clear that, if the persons who employed the prisoner to make this imitation bad been persons who were parties to a real Suit and they had gone to him to prepare this document in order that they might be able to deceive the Court in that suit, and he had made the document for the purpose of its being so used, he would have been guilty of forgery. But the doubt we had was whether a person could be guilty of forging a document when the document was never intended to be used at all and represented absolutely nothing; in other words, whether the person who was the agent of the other for the purpose of making the document could have a wicked intention when the person who employed him, the principal, had no such intention. feeling that doubt we decided that the case had better be argued before five Judges, in order that the matter might be considered and laid at rest once for all, and upon a consideration of the question we have all come to the conclusion that the facts are sufficient to sustain a conviction and we rely upon the case of Reg v. Hillman 1 Leigh and Cav. C.C. 343. In that case the offence with which the prisoner was charged, was that of supplying a noxious drug to enable a woman to procure abortion, The facts proved were that he had supplied a drug, the effect of which, if it had been taken by a woman, with child, would have been to cause abortion ; but that the drug was purchased by a person whose object in purchasing it was to entrap the prisoner, and there being in fact no woman with child to whom it was intended to give the drug for the purpose of procuring abortion. In that case the same question arose, namely, whether the offence of supplying a drug to obtain abortion was committed when there was, in effect, no intention to obtain abortion. In that case the judgment of the Court was given by Sir William Earle, who was then Chief Justice, of the Common Pleas, and than whom no greater authority, ever sat on the English Bench, and what he says is : 'The question asked of us is whether the intention of any other person than the defendant is necessary to the commission of the offence made punishable under this Statute (24 and 25 Vic., c. 100, Section 59),. We are all of opinion that that question should be answered in the negative. The Statute is directed against the supplying of any substance with the intention that it shall be employed in procuring abortion. The prisoner, in this case, supplied the substance, and intended that it should be employed to procure abortion. He knew of his OWN intention that it should be so employed, and is, therefore, within the words of the Statute, as we construed them. He is also, in our opinion, within the mischief of the Statute, and ought to be convicted.'

4. It seems to us that that case is absolutely on all fours with the present, because Sir William Erle there says, in effect, that where the drug was supplied for the purpose of its being used to procure abortion that is equivalent to supplying it with the intention to procure abortion. In the case before us this particular document was made for the purpose of being used to deceive the Court, and, being made for that purpose, we may, for the same reason as that on which it was held that an offence bad been committed in the other case, say that it was made with the intention of being used for that purpose, and therefore we think that the offence was committed and that the prisoner comes within the mischief of the Statute ; and as we feel no doubt that the facts found were correctly found by the Judge and the assessors, was confirm the conviction and dismiss the appeal.


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