The Argus at KellyGang 19/2/1879
If money is the all powerful agent it is supposed to be, the destruction of the Kelly gang should be speedily accomplished. Since December last a substantial reward has been offered by the Victorian Government for the capture of the outlaws, dead or alive. The price put upon the head of Edward KELLY was £1,000, and upon that of the other members of the band each, making £2,500 in all. This sum has now been more than trebled.
As we mentioned yesterday the Premier of New South Wales, Sir HENRY PARKES, has communicated with the Government of this colony, expressing the opinion that it had now become the duty of the two colonies of Victoria and New South Wales to unite in the most active measures to capture the gang. The Government of New South Wales had offered a reward of £3,000, the banks of that colony had offered £1,000, and Sir HENRY PARKES suggested that the rewards offered by this colony should be increased to £4,000, making altogether the large sum of £8,000. Our Government has accepted the suggestion, and effect has been given to it by the issue of a special number of the Gazette, in which the smaller reward is withdrawn and the larger substituted.
Whatever may be the result of this new step, it must be allowed that we are greatly indebted to the New South Wales Government for the promptness of their action and their opportune proposal. The criminals are ours, and it was our business to dead with them, New South Wales has only suffered from a single raid, while in Victoria valuable lives have been taken, and a whole district reduced to a chronic state of alarm and disorder. Yet New South Wales has offered, to begin with, a larger reward for the apprehension of the criminals than the sum set apart for the purpose by Victoria after months of unsuccessful pursuit. And through her instrumentality the total sum has been brought up to such an amount as to constitute a very powerful agent in tracing and running down the miscreants. The prospect of getting £2,000 per man, or £8,000 for the gang, will tempt very strongly the cupidity of the associates and sympathisers, by whose aid chiefly KELLY and his fellow murderers have continued to elude justice, and then places of refuse must consequently become fewer and fewer. It will also be seen from a telegram which appears elsewhere that Sir HENRY PARKES has taken the necessary steps to revive without delay the Outlawry Act in New South Wales. The country on both sides of the border is now thoroughly aroused, and a good account should be given of the desperadoes before long.
A supplement to the Government Gazette issued last night cancels the notice of the 13th December, 1878, offering a reward of £2,500 for the capture of the Kelly gang and increases the reward to £4,000, or £l,000 for each outlaw. It is notified that £1,000 will be paid by the Government for the capture of, or for such information as will lead to the capture of, each of the following offenders, viz - Edward Kelly, Daniel Kelly, Stephen Hart, and Joseph Byrne. It is further intimated that the Government of New South Wales have signified their intention of granting a similar reward.
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