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568

BRIBERY

AND

CORRUPT

manufactures of fine pottery, and the so-called porcelain buttons, made of specially prepared feldspar; with commerce in wine, wood, and coal. The Canal of Briare (about 37 miles long) unites the Loire with the Loing. A new port has been established on a branch of the lateral canal, opened in 1896, on which the traffic in 1898 was 36,217 tons; the traffic on the Canal de Briare being 57,512 tons. Population (1881), 4577; (1901), 5619. Bribery and Corrupt Practices.— Administrative corruption was dealt with by the British Public offleers.

Parliament in the Public Bodies’ Corrupt Prac^ces Act, 1889. The public bodies concerned are county councils, town or borough councils, boards, commissioners, select vestries, and other bodies having local government, public health, or poor law powers, and having for those purposes to administer rates raised under jmblic general Acts. The giving or receiving, promising, offering, soliciting or agreeing to receive any gift, fee, loan, or advantage by any person as an inducement for any act or forbearance by a member, officer, or servant of a public body in regard to the affairs of that body is made a misdemeanour in England and Ireland and a crime and offence in Scotland. Prosecution under the Act requires the consent of the Attorney- or Solicitor-General in England or Ireland and of the Lord Advocate in Scotland. Conviction renders liable to imprisonment with or without hard labour for a term not exceeding two years, and to a fine not exceeding ,£500, in addition to or in lieu of imprisonment. The offender may also be ordered to pay to the public body concerned any bribe received by him; he may be adjudged incapable for seven years of holding public office, i.e., the position of member, officer, or servant of a public body; and if already an officer or servant, besides forfeiting his place, he is liable at the discretion of the court to forfeit his right to compensation or pension. On a second conviction he may be adjudged forever incapable of holding public office, and for seven years incapable of being registered or of voting as a parliamentary elector, or as an elector of members of a public body. An offence under the Act may be prosecuted and punished under any other Act applicable thereto, or at common law; but no person is to be punished twice for the same offence. For a list of the principal statutes dealing with corrupt and illegal practices at elections, and for the effect of such Elections Prac^ces avoiding returns, see Elections. Corrupt practices include bribery as defined by the Corrupt Practices Prevention Act, 1854, treating, undue influence, personation, and aiding, abetting, counselling, and procuring personation. The definition of treating has been extended to include the case where the treater is not a candidate, and the voter treated is guilty of the offence as well as the treater; the definition of undue influence now expressly includes the inflicting or threatening to inflict spiritual injury, damage, harm, or loss. Illegal practices are certain acts and omissions in regard to an election which are now prohibited, whether done or omitted, honestly or dishonestly. They may be classified under the following heads :—(1) Acts which are illegal practices by whomsoever committed. These are as follows : Payment or receipt or contracts to pay or receive money for conveyance of voters to or from the poll, on account of any committee room beyond the number allowed by the Act, or to an elector for use of house or land to exhibit addresses, &c., or for exhibition by him (otherwise than in the ordinary course of his business of advertising agent) of such addresses, &c.; payment of election expenses otherwise than by or through the election agent, and payment otherwise than to a candidate or election

PRACTICES

agent of money provided by any other person for election expenses; voting or procuring to vote of any person prohibited from voting, if the person offending knows of the prohibition; knowingly publishing a false statement that a candidate has withdrawn, or publishing with a view to affect the return of a candidate a false statement as to his character or conduct. (2) Acts and omissions which are illegal practices in the case of candidates and agents only, being breaches of duties specially imposed on them. These are the payment or incurring expenses in excess of the maximum authorized by the Legislature, the omitting without lawful excuse to make a return and declaration of expenses in due time, and the payment by an election agent of any election expense amounting to 40s. not vouched by bill of particulars and receipt, of any claim for expenses not sent in in due time, or of any such claim after the time allowed for payment thereof. (3) Acts which are illegal practices when done by a candidate or agent, and are a minor offence when done by any one else. These are illegal payments, employment, and hiring, and printing, publishing, or posting a bill, placard, or poster not bearing on its face the name of the printer or publisher. Illegal payments are knowingly providing money for prohibited payments or expenses in excess of the maximum, corruptly inducing a candidate to withdraw by payment or promise of payment (the candidate so induced being guilty of the like offence), paying or agreeing to pay for torches, flags, banners, cockades, ribbons, and other marks of distinction (the receiver being guilty of the like offence if he is aware of the illegality). Illegal employment is the employment for payment or promise of payment of persons beyond the number allowed by the Legislature or for purposes not authorized. The employe is guilty of the like offence if he knows of the illegality. Illegal hiring is the letting or lending, or the employing, hiring, borrowing, or using to carry voters to the poll of stage, or hackney carriages, or horses, or of carriages or horses ordinarily let for hire, and the hiring of committee rooms in premises licensed for the sale of intoxicants, in a club (not being a permanent political club) where intoxicants are sold, in premises where refreshments are ordinarily sold, or in a public elementary school in receipt of a parliamentary grant. Personation and aiding, abetting, &c., of personation are felonies punishable with two years’ imprisonment with hard labour. All other corrupt practices are indictable misdemeanours (in Scotland, crimes and offences) punishable with one year’s imprisonment, with or without hard labour, or a fine not exceeding £200. Conviction of any corrupt practice also renders the offender incapable for seven years of being registered as an elector, or voting at any election, parliamentary or other, in the United Kingdom, or of holding any public or judicial office, or of being elected to or sitting in the House of Commons; and any such office or seat held by him at the time is vacated. In the case of a parliamentary candidate, if an election court finds that there has been treating or undue influence by him, or any other corrupt practice with his knowledge or consent, he becomes incapable of ever being elected for the same constituency, and incurs the like incapacities as if he had been convicted on indictment; if it is found by the election court that he has been guilty by his agents of a corrupt practice, he becomes incapable for seven years of being elected for the same, constituency. Illegal practices are offences punishable on summary conviction with a fine not exceeding £100, and with five years’ incapacity for being registered or voting as a parliamentary elector, or an elector to public office within the county or borough where the offence was committed. Illegal payments, employment, and hiring, and printing and publishing of