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Slave Trade Act 1843

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IIWhat Persons are designated by the Term Slaves.

And be it declared and enacted, That all Persons holden in Servitude as Pledges for Debt, and commonly called " Pawns," or by whatsoever other Name they may be called or known, shall, for the Purposes of the said consolidated Slave Trade Act, and of an Act passed in the Third and Fourth Years of the Reign of King William the Fourth, intituled An Act for the Abolition of Slavery throughout the British Colonies, for promoting the Industry of the manumitted Slaves, and for compensating the Persons hitherto entitled to the Services of such Slaves, and of this present Act, be deemed and construed to be Slaves or Persons intended to be dealt with as Slaves.

IIITrial of Offenders against the recited Act and this Act.

And whereas it is expedient to make further Provision for the Trial and Punishment of Offenders; be it enacted, That all Offences against the consolidated Slave Trade Act or against this present Act, which shall be committed by British Subjects out of this United Kingdom, whether within the Dominions of the British Crown or in any Foreign Country, or by Foreigners within the British Dominions, except in Places where the British Admiral has Jurisdiction, may be taken cognizance of, inquired into, tried, and determined according to the Provisions of an Act passed in the Ninth Year of King George the Fourth, intituled An Act for consolidating and amending the Statutes in England relative to Offences against the Person.

IVEvidence may be taken abroad, and transmitted to the Court of Queen's Bench.

And whereas the Provisions heretofore made for the hearing and determining in England of Offences committed against the Acts for the Abolition of the Slave Trade in Places out of this United Kingdom have been found ineffectual, by reason of the Difficulty of proving in this Kingdom Matters and Things done elsewhere ; be it enacted, That in all Cases of Indictment or Information laid or exhibited in the Court of Queen's Bench for Misdemeanors or Offences committed against the said Acts or against this present Act in any Places out of the United Kingdom, and within any British Colony, Settlement, Plantation, or Territory, it shall and may be lawful for Her Majesty's said Court, upon Motion to be made on behalf of the Prosecutor or Defendant, to award a Writ or Writs of Mandamus, requiring the Chief Justice or other chief judicial Officer in such Colony, Settlement, Plantation, or Territory, who are hereby respectively authorized and required accordingly to hold a Court, with all convenient Speed, for the Examination of Witnesses and receiving other Proofs concerning the Matters charged in such Indictments or Informations respectively, and in the meantime to cause public Notice to be given of the holding of such Courts, and Summonses to be issued for the Attendances of Witnesses and of Agents and Counsel of the Parties; and such Examination as aforesaid shall be then and there openly and publicly taken in the said Court viva voce, upon the respective Oaths of the Persons examined, and be reduced to Writing, and be sent to Her Majesty in Her Court of Queen's Bench (in manner set forth and prescribed in an Act passed in the Thirteenth Year of George the Third, Chapter Sixty-three, intituled An Act for establishing certain Regulations for the better Management of the Affairs of the East India Company as well in India as in Europe); and such Depositions, being duly taken and returned according to the true Intent and Meaning of this Act, shall be allowed and read, and shall be deemed as good and competent Evidence as if such Witnesses had been present and sworn, and examined viva voce at any Trial for such Misdemeanors and Offences as aforesaid in Her Majesty's said Court of Queen's Bench, any Law or Usage to the contrary thereof notwithstanding.

VIn Cases not prohibited hereby Slaves may be sold or transferred.

Provided always, and be it enacted, That in all the Cases in which the holding or taking of Slaves shall not be prohibited by this or any other Act of Parliament, it shall be lawful to sell or transfer such Slaves, any thing in this or any other Act contained notwithstanding.

VIAct not to extend to Persons obtaining Slaves by Inheritance, &c.

Provided always, and be it enacted, That nothing in this Act contained shall be taken to subject to any Forfeiture, Punishment, or Penalty any Person for transferring or receiving any Share in any Joint Stock Company established before the passing of this Act in respect of any Slave or Slaves in the Possession of such Company before such Time, or for selling any Slave or Slaves which were lawfully in his Possession at the Time of passing this Act, or which such Person shall or may have become possessed of or entitled unto bond fide prior to such Sale, by Inheritance, Devise, Bequest, Marriage, or otherwise by Operation of Law.

VIICommencement of Act.

And be it enacted, That this Act shall be deemed and taken to be in force and to have effect from and after the First Day of November in the Year One thousand eight hundred and forty-three, and not before.

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