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EXTRAORDINARY TRIAL FOR MURDER,
(From the Leed's Mercury, June 7.)
A remarkable case is now on trial before the High Criminal Court of Hainault, at Mons. The accused are the Count and Countess of Bocarme, of a family stated to be one of the oldest in Belgium. The crime laid to their charge is that of havng poisoned the Countess's brother, Gustave Faugnies, in order to obtain his fortune. Count de Bocarme resided at the chateau of Bury ; he married in 1843, for her fortune, Lydia Fougnies, the daughter of a retired grocer, and got with her a sum representing £100 a-year of English money. This, after all, was no great sum, and as the Count was somewhat of a spendthrift, his affairs assumed gradually a most embarrassed state. His wife's brother, Gustave Faugnies, had become possessed, by his father's death, of considerable property, and as he was unmarried, the Count and Countess had every prospect of inheriting his fortune. Gustave, though weak in constitution, and amputated of a leg, determined, in November, 1850, to marry. The state of Count Bocarme's exchequer was at this time quite ruinous. He owed large sums to his legal advisers, and had mortgaged most of his property. Fougnies' marriage would have been a blow to his hopes. Suddenly the Count became addicted, in the beginning of 1850, to the study of chemistry. He went under a false name to a manufacturer of alembics, corres- ponded also under a false name with a professor of chemistry, and ultimately succeeded in dis . tilling from tobacco leaves a deadly poison known as nicotine, and for which hitherto it has been impossible to find a reactive. This poison he tried on various animals, and, according to his own statement, he obtained tremendous results, death being instantaneous after the slightest absorption of the poison. In November, 1850, Gustave Fougnies was induced to accept an in- vitation to dinner at Bury, it being proposed to
him to become trustee for the Count and Coun-
tess, during a voyage they intended making in Germany. He came on the morning of the 20th November, and after dinner on the same day, died in the room where were present both the Count and the Countess. It was found, on examination, that death had ensued, not from apoplexy, but from the forcible injection of a poisonous and corrosive substance. There were marks of vio- lence on the face of the dead man, and part of the poison had run down the side of his face, corroding the flesh and blistering it. An exami-
nation of Count Bocarme's hands showed the
presence of a bite from human teeth, and a red tinge on one of his nails corresponded with cer- tain marks and scratches on the face of Fougnies. The clothes of Fougnies and those of the Count, which he had changed, were found wet, and hanging up to-dry in an attic of the chateau.
This had been done by the Countess, as- alie states, by order of her husbnnd. The floor had been scraped with glass, but insufficiently to pre- vent the marks of the corroding liquid, which seemed to have been spurted all over the room. There were no traces of chemical instruments or
of any apparatus for the distillation of poison. The false name assumed by the Count in his dealings with the chemical instrument-maker,, however, became known. After six weeks search, the alembics used in producing nicotine were found, and Bocarme, when informed of these discoveries, for a moment gave himself up to despair. The Countess then openly accused her husband of being the murderer. She de- scribed how, after dinner, her brother expressed his determination to go home, and Bocarme went out to order his horses. In his absence she and her brother were talking together, when Bocarme rushed in, seized Gustave by the shoulders and threw him down. She fled, and did not return into the room till all was over, and the body of Gustave lay lifeless on the ground.
(From the Adas, June 21.)
After seventeen days of trial, the case of the Count and Countess de Bocarme was brought to
a conclusion at the Assize Court of Mons on
Friday. After considering their verdict for an hour and a half the jury returned into Court and
the foreman in a somewhat tremulous bnt firm voice declared the finding of the jury to be, " ou my honour and conscience, and in the pre- sence of God and man," a verdict of guilty against the Count, and not guilty against his wife, Madame Bocarme:-The President then ordered the accused to be brought into Conrt. This time the Count was admitted first. His appearance was calm and collected. Madame de Bocarme had her veil down, but her step waB firm. On hearing the verdict of guilty a slight momentary flush passed over the Count's face, but he evinced no other sign of emotion. On heanng not guilty on his wife, an expression of
internal satisfaction animated his features. He
looked affectionately toward-» his wife, who gave no visible signs of emotion. She left the dock with a firm step, without speaking to her hus- band. The Procureur du Roi, having asked the prisoner if he had an v thing to say, he replied " No, except that I am perfectly innocent." He then entered calmly into conversation with his counsel. At eleven o'clock the Court pro- nounced sentence of death upon Hippolyte Visart de Bocarme, and decreed that the execu- tion should take place in one of the squares of Mons. The prisoner left the Court under guard with a firm step.
BANK OF AUSTRALASIA.-Yesterday, the 17th annual meeting of the shareholders of this Com Ïany was held at the establishment in Austin
riars, City. Oliver Farren, Esq., having taken the chair, Mr. Milliken, the secretary, read the report, which was to the following effect: " The current business of the bank during the past year has been of a healthy, profitable, and improving character. The bad debts of the year have been unimportant, and all provided for ; the profits have greatly increased; and con- siderable progress has at length been made in the realisation of the securities held against the old dependencies. The greater part of the secu- rities have been realised ; the loss on their rea- lisation is shown in the financial statement ; and the directors can assure the shareholders that any further losses which can reasonably be ex- pected to arise from the sale of those which re- main will be more than covered by the balance already at the credit of the profit and loss ac-
count. Notwithstanding these losses, the direc-, tors are gratified to find that they were fully justified in paying the increased dividend in April, last, and although the current business of the bank leads them to hope that a further increase may ere long be made, the rate of 4 per cent, will be, continued for the present, under the strength
ened conviction that It will not be .prudent to increase it until all the.old dependencies are completely settled. Little .doubt is entertained that this will be accomplished in the course of this year, and that the entire profits of the bank may then be devoted« to| more remunerative dividends, and to the establishment andaugmen
tation of such a reserve fund as will secare their Îernlanency under all reasonable contingencies,
'he following- statement exhibits the result of the business during the year now reported on: Balance in profit and loss account at 15th of October, 1849, £50,717 17s.'6d.; net profits iu the colonies and in London, for^tbe year ending 14th October, 1850, after deducting all expenses of management, £64,221 13s. 3d. ; from which, are to be taken £27,000, poid to the proprietors as dividends of 12s. per share, at April, 1850, and October, 1850, leaving £37,221 13s. 3d. to be added to the balance of October 15, 1849 ; total, £87,93910s. 9d. Theascertainedlossonold dependences to be deducted is, £51,683 13s. lid. The balance at the credit of profit and loss ac- count, at October 14,1850, is thus £36,255 16s. lOd. The assets and liabilities at the latter period, stood as follows :-Assets, viz. ; govern
ment stock, specie, and cash, £619,519 5s. ;
bank premises, £8,910 12s. 7d. ; hüls receivable and other securities, £1,283,532 12s. 7d. ; totnl, £1,931,962 10s. 2d.-Liabilities, viz.: Capital, £900,000; circulation, 119,650; bills payable, and other liabilities, £279,632 9s. lid. ; deposits, £596,424 3s. 5d. ; profit and loss, £36,255 16s. 10d.; total, £1,931,962 10s. 2d. The arrange- ment made with the Bank of Australia, for the liquidation of their debt bas been honorably car-
ried out, and all anxiety respecting the balance | has ceased." The report was received with great applause.-The chairman alluded to the report now presented to the meeting as a source of gratification to himself, as well as to his col- leagues. The only place where any uncertain liability still remained was at Sydney and Laun- ceston, whilst at Adelaide and Melbourne, Mait- land and Hobart Town, it was not expected that any loss would exceed the amount in hand at present. The business of the past year was most profitable, for they had made £10,000 more than in the year before. Had they not been obliged to provide for these old dependencies to such an extent, the directors might have been in a posi- tion to divide 6 per cent, amongst the share- holders, besides adding a very handsome sum to the rest. At Adelaide and Melbourne they had made a large profit, and he wished he could say the same of that at Sydney, bnt it was caused, no doubt, from the evil arising from their old dependencies in that quarter; and the same might be said of Launceston. He hoped to live to see the termination" of these old depen- dencies, as it wonld be some gratification to him, after so many years of trouble and anxiety at the unfortunate losses of this bank (applause). In respect to the Bank of Australia, he might mention that their agreement to pay this com- pany by instalments had been faithfully fulfilled up to January last, except £4000, but this he learnt from the last advices had been paid like« wise (hear, hear). The chairman concluded by moving that the report be received and adopted, and distributed in the usual way amongst the proprietors. The report was, after .some dis» cussion, adopted unanimously. Thomas Hender- son, Esq., D. O. Henriques, Esq, and Charles Morris, Esq., the directors retiring, . were re elected unanimously. Mr. Serjeant Gazelee then moved a vote of thanks to the chairman and directors of the company, which was seconded by Colonel Mitchell, and passed unanimously.
Daily News, June 18.
SUBMARINE TELEGRAPH BETWEEN ENGLAND AND FRANCE ?-We have great satisfaction in learning, from a prospectus now before us, which is authenticated by names that cannot fail of commanding the confidence of the public, that there is at length a definite prospect of this great international undertaking being conducted to a successful issue. The requisite concession has been obtained from the French government, guaranteeing to the projectors the -exclusive right to the establishment and use of submarine communication between the two countries for a period of ten years from 1st of October, 1851 ; and they have likewise procured a charter of incorporation from the British crown, limiting the liability of shareholders to the amounts of their respective shares. The preliminary arrangements are so far matured that the plans of the contemplated works, nccompained by the report of Mr. Cubitt, the consulting engineer to the company, have been lodged with the French goverment, and the neccessary amount of caution money deposit. Tenders have been received for the construction of the works, on terms which would be fully covered by the amount of capital intended to be raised (£100,000 in £1 shares), and the company's operations will be commenced as soon as a sufficient number of shares are subscribed for. The scale on which it is proposed to carry out this enterprise is of a magnitude commensurate with its intrinsic grandeur and importance. It is intended to lay down a considerable number of wires between the two coats, enclosed in a protective of adequate strength to ensure them againstaccidental injury, and thereby to obtain numerous distinct lines of telegraphic communication between Great Britain ana the various continental countries, with the view of eventually establishing a uni- versal and instantaneous communication through- out the whole of Europe." The following passage from the prospectus will perhaps best explain the scope and capabilities of the design :-" One great feature in the undertaking is the advantages it will offer to India and America. By the agency of a single wire the news by the India mail, on its arrival at Trieste or Marseilles, may be delivered, printed in Roman type, simul- taneously at Paris and London, and at Liverpool in readiness for the departure of the American mail ; while the remaining lines of wire may at the same instant be conveying intelligence be-
tween Great Britain and the other countries of
SLIGHT DISASTER TO THE ARCTIC EXPEDI- TIONARY SHIP "PRINCE ALBERT."-Stromness, 26th May : The Prince Albert, Kennedy, ar- rived here yesterday morning, having lost her jibboom off Pentland Skerries. This has been supplied, gratis, by our chief magistrate, Mr. Strange. Lady Franklin, accompanied by Miss Cracroft and Mr. Kennedy, reached Stromness on Saturday evening, and the yacht will proceed to-morrow morning. Wind at present N.B., fresh. The boats crew engaged by Mr. Kennedy are all ready.-Aberdeen Journal. Lady Franklin, it is feared by the Scotch journals, is fast sinking under the weight of her prolonged and terrible trial. Yesterday week prayers were offered up in Stromness for the officers and-crew of the expeditionary yacht.-Liverpool Albion,
PRUSSIAN STATISTICS.-A statistical work
just published states the number of Protestants m the Prussian monarcy at 10,016,798; and that of Papists at 6,079,613.-Leed's Mercury.
STEAK OK THE ATLANTIC-The New York journals contain a challenge, signed "Darius Davidson," and dated New York, April 8, offering to construct an ocean steam-ship capable of steaming 439 miles per diem, namely 100 miles every 24 hours more than have yet been achieved by the swiftest Bteam-ßhip afloat.
A STEAMER BURNT ON THE MISSISSIPPI.-A
steamer, with 100 persons on board, took fire on the Mississippi above Vicksburg, on the 21st April, and was burned to the water's edge. Of the whole number of passengers only about sixty have been found : the rest are spposed to have perished with the boat.-Bell'* Messenger.
Printed and published by RICHARD JONES, at
the "Mercnry Office," High-street, Wert