The Argus at KellyGang 6/1/1879
THE MANSFIELD MURDERS
[BY ELECTRIC TELEGRAPH]
(FROM OUR SPECIAL REPORTER)
MANSFIELD, SUNDAY EVENING
The action of the police authorities in exercising the authority conferred upon them by the fifth section of the Outlawry Act and arresting those persons who are known to be sympathisers with the Kelly gang appears likely to lead to some definite results, and has somewhat astonished the criminal class in this distinct. When it became known here that in addition to the raid made upon the friends of the gang here, simultaneous action had been taken in Benalla, Wangaratta, and other places in the North-Eastern District, a general feeling of satisfaction was expressed by the residents, and it was thought that at last there was a chance of the gang, who had so long eluded the police being brought to book. Both here and at Benalla the excitement yesterday was very great, and a crowd of persons assembled to get a glimpse of the prisoners.
The names of the five arrested at Benalla were John M'Iroy, aged 31 years; Thos Lloyd, aged 40 years; James Quinn, aged 36 years; John Mongal, aged 28 years; and Francis Hart, aged 36 years. These men are all of the labourng class, but were described as farmers and selectors. The charges against them brought under the 5th section of the Outlawry Act was having given information to an outlaw known as Edward Kelly and others, his accomplices, contrary to the provisions of the act. The section referred to, which is a very long one, provides that any person who shall give assistance, shelter, or sustenance, or who shall provide arms, horses, &c., or who shall supply information direct or indirect to the outlaws so as to assist them in the commission of further crimes, or who shall aid or assist them in their escape from the police shall be liable to imprisonment with or without hard labour for a period not exceeding 15 years.
The prisoners were arrested at different places in the vicinity of Benalla, most of them being at work at the time, and after being lodged in the police camp all night, were taken before Mr Robertson, J P, yesterday morning. Superintendent Sadlier, who prosecuted on behalf of the authorities, at once intimated that he did not intend to proceed with the charges against the prisoners, and asked for a remand for a week , so as to allow time for the police to bring forward their evidence. An objection was of course made by the prisoners, who wished the cases to be at once decided, but the magistrate granted the remand asked for. The prisoners, who were handcuffed together, were then taken to the railway station, under a guard of troopers and forwarded on to the Beechworth gaol by the morning train. Later in the day a coach arrived from Mansfield , containing six more prisoners, under a strong escort of police. These men had been arrested about this township on the previous afternoon, as it was well known that they were friends and sympathisers with the Kellys. The names of these prisoners were – Isaiah Wright, a labourer, but who is well known about the district as Wild Wright, and is cousin of the Kellys; John Hart, a horsebreaker, no relative to Steve Hart; Robert Millar, a selector, married to an aunt of the Kellys; John Lloyd, a labourer; Darnel Delany, a labourer; and William Perkins, also a selector.
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