At the Borough Police Court this morning, before the Mayor (Mr CC Graham), in the chair, and Mr J Sinfield, John C Rollinson, of 34, Castle Road, was summoned for having failed to enter into a pledge-book the particulars as provided by the Pawnbrokers’ Act, 1872, between 1st November and 31st December, 1914.
Annie Eden, 12, Seamen’s Dwellings, Castle Road, stated that on the 4th November, she went to I’Anson’s shop to pledge a jacket and vest for her niece. She received 7s for them. She stated to the pawnbroker exactly who was the owner of the goods.
In reply to the Chief Constable, witness stated she did not lead the pawnbroker to believe that they were her goods.
The Chief Constable stated that he applied for a summons, so that defendant would produce the pledge book. The book was produced, and he examined it with the Justices.
He found in the book on November 4th a pledge relating to a jacket and vest. The book was duly filled in as far as the sixth column. The seventh and eighth column, which should supply the name and address of the owner, was left blank. The police at the time when they discovered this offence were making enquiries about some stolen property.
The defendant, giving evidence, stated that it was the custom in the trade that when goods were pawned weekly not to enter in the name and address of the owner. They would find in the book the date when the articles were redeemed. As managing director of Messrs I’Anson’s, he held himself responsible. Legally he was wrong, but spiritually he was not, that was why he pleaded not guilty.
The Chief Constable said that the case came as a result of some stolen property. The pawnbrokers did not keep any information back from the police – information regarding three cases which were awaiting trial at the quarter sessions. Detective Sergeant Yeoman visited the defendant’s business, and within their legal rights they refused to allow him to see their books.
Subsequently, a summons was taken out in order to make them produce their books. When they were examined by the police, it was found that there were only three cases in which the name and address of the owner were supplied. These three cases were ones in connection with the cases now awaiting trial.
The writing was in pale ink, and the other in very dark ink. He suggested that they had been filled in between the time of the visit of Detective Sergeant Yeoman, and the time of the summons being taken out.
The Mayor said the Magistrates considered the case a very serious one, and the defendant would have to give an undertaking that the books would be properly looked after in future.
He would be fined £2 including costs.