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Marguerite DIXBLANC






The Park Lane murder
Classification: Murderer
Characteristics: Argument - Robbery
Number of victims: 1
Date of murder: April 7, 1872
Date of arrest: 7 days after
Date of birth: 1842
Victim profile: Marie Caroline Besant Riel, 46 (her employer)
Method of murder: Strangulation
Location: London, England, United Kingdom
Status: Sentenced to death. Reprieved and sentenced to penal servitude for life

London Daily Telegraph

The Park Lane murder

Marguerite Dixblanc was 29-year-old Belgian and, in January 1872, she was taken on as a cook to the Park Lane household of 46-year-old widow Mme Marie Caroline Besant Riel. Mme Riel had a quick temper and there were occasional quarrels, always in French, between to two women. Dixblanc was given her notice around 20th March. Even during this period the two of them argued, always in French.

On Sunday 7th April 1872 Mme Riel said she was going for a walk in Green Park around midday but failed to return for an appointment that she had at 4pm. Around 8pm Dixblanc said she was going to church but took a taxi to Victoria Station and the boat train for Paris.

The staff assumed that Mme Riel had gone to visit friends and it was not until the next day that anything was thought to be amiss. On opening a locked pantry door Mme Riel's body was found on the floor. Her neck and face were covered with bruises. It was soon discovered that not only was there a sum of money and property missing from the house, so was Marguerite Dixblanc.

Detectives followed her trail to France and arrested her in a coal-merchant's in St Denis in Paris just as Dixblanc was confessing to the shopkeeper. The missing property was found in her possession and she was returned to England on 20th April.

At her trial at the Old Bailey on 14th June she pleaded to she had been provoked and the defence tried, unsuccessfully, to get the charge reduced to manslaughter. Dixblanc's story was that when she had been in the kitchen when her employer had become abusive over her not having started to make the soup for dinner. This had led to a fight in which Dixblanc, described as a 'coarse, muscular type', had got the better of her employer. The judge ruled that verbal abuse was insufficient cause for provocation and Dixblanc was found guilty and sentenced to hang. She was, however, reprieved and sentenced to penal servitude for life.



The Times

Tuesday, Apr 09, 1872

Yesterday a most atrocious murder was discovered to have been perpetrated in Park-lane, Piccadilly, the victim being a French lady, and the perpetrator of the crime, there is little room for doubt, her own domestic and fellow-countrywoman.

The murder was discovered under circumstances which give an additional horror to the crime itself. Mademoiselle Riel, who is a member of the French company now performing under M.Felix, at the St. James's Theatre, returned from Paris by yesterday's mail, and arrived at her mother's residence, 13, Park-lane, at about 8 o'clock in the morning. She was informed that Madame Riel, who was a widow, was not at home, and at first it was thought that she had gone to meet her daughter. But subsequently it was found that certain doors were locked, and that the cook and the keys were also missing. This led to an examination of the dressing-room, and Madame's outer garments being there ready for her to put on showed that she had not left the house. One of the places locked up was the pantry, and it was opened with duplicate keys in the possession of the young lady. On the floor lay the dead body of Madame Riel. Her death appeared to have been caused by strangulation, for the tightened rope was about her neck, and marks of violence upon her body left no doubt as to her having been murdered.

The murder was evidently committed in some other place than the pantry. It is probable that the body was first placed in the coal cellar, and thence dragged or carried to the pantry, for Elizabeth Watts, the housemaid, on being interrogated about a conversation she had with the cook, mentioned that she had spoken about fetching up coals after her mistress was thought to have gone out, and that the cook desired that she should not do so. The danger of the body being seen while it was in the coal cellar must have struck the murderess, and she took an opportunity of removing it to the pantry, as a place over which she had direct control. In the coal cellar were found little articles, such as a hair-pin and a key the deceased lady always kept, and there were marks on the body as if it had been lying on the coals. The hair was full of cinders, and the appearances show that death had not been caused without a struggle, for there were many violent marks besides the deep indentation caused by the tightness with which the rope, which was in a slip knot, had been pulled, and this indentation was particularly deep beneath the ear where the knot itself came.

Suspicion, and something more than suspicion, at once rested on Marguerite Dixblanc, the cook, whose conduct on the previous day was thought to be occasioned by the crime, especially when taken in connexion with her disappearance. . . .

An inspection of the safe showed the inducement for the murder. All the valuables except jewelry, which it was perhaps thought might lead to detection, were taken. Bank-notes, French bonds, and railway shares are believed to have been stolen; the jewelry left behind was not left by any oversight, the articles being place on one side as of no account. . . . 

Dixblanc is said to have been in Paris during the seige, and to have been associated with the Communists in their struggle after the German occupation. She is described as being a very powerful woman. The police describe her as 28 years of age, 5ft, 5in. in height, and stout with a fresh complexion, red face, dark hair, and brown eyes. She is believed to have had on at the time she left Park-lane a green dress, waterproof cloak, and brown bonnet.





OLD COURT.—Monday, June 10th, and Tuesday, June 11th, 1872.

Before Mr. Recorder

471. MARGUERITE DIXBLANC (29), was indicted for the wilful murder of Marie Caroline Besant Riel. She was also charged, on the Coroner's Inquisition, with the like murder.

MR. ATTORNEY-GENERAL, with MESSRS. POLAND, ARCHIBALD, and BESLEY, conducted the Prosecution; and MR. POWELL, Q.C., with MESSRS. GOUGH, W. WRIGHT, and MIREHOUSE, the Defence.

The prisoner being a Belgian, and not understanding English, the evidence was interpreted to her by Mr. Charles Albert.

ELIZA WATTS . I was formerly in the service of Madame Riel, as housemaid, and had been so for about four months before this matter occurred—the household consisted of Madame Riel, her daughter, the prisoner, and myself; the prisoner was the cook; she came into Madame Riel's service in January last—on Easter Sunday, 31st March, Mademoiselle Riel went to Paris—the prisoner cannot speak English; I was able to understand her, by motions—she told me that she was going to leave on 21st April—on Saturday, 6th April, Madame Riel dined at home; a friend dined with her in the evening—after dinner the food was placed in the pantry on the ground floor, on the same floor as the dining-room and parlour—Madame kept the key of that pantry—after I had placed the food there, Madame locked the door and put the key in her pocket—it was her practice always to keep that door locked—there was an iron safe in that pantry—before dinner was over, on this Saturday, Madame told me to go down and tell the prisoner to come up, she wanted to speak to her—I told her, and she went up and saw Madame—afterwards, the prisoner had her dinner and went out; I think that was at 9 o'clock—she did not tell me what she went out for—she returned just before 12 o'clock—at that time Madame's friend had gone, and she had gone to bed; I was sitting up in the kitchen for the prisoner—she let herself in with the area key—she brought in with her some articles of food for the next day—shortly after she came in, she and I went up stairs to bed—my bedroom was on the third floor, and she occupied a separate room on the same floor; Madame's bedroom was the front room on the second floor, and on the first floor was the drawing-room and Mademoiselle Riel's bedroom—Madame, the prisoner, and I were the only three persons who slept in the house that night—on the following morning, Sunday, the 7th, I got up at 7.30, and went down stairs into the kitchen; the prisoner was there—about 8 o'clock I went up to Madame's bedroom, to take up her breakfast, some tea and bread and butter—she was in bed—I lighted the fire in her bedroom and afterwards went down stairs—the prisoner and I were together in the kitchen—I went up stairs again about 9.30, I did not go into Madame's room then, not until about 10 o'clock—I went in once or twice—at two or three minutes past 11 o'clock her bell rang, I went up to her bedroom, and she was then up and dressed—she told me that I might do her bedroom—I proceeded to do it—Madame put on her bonnet and cloak, and said she was going out into the Green Park for a quarter of an hour, and she told me if a lady called I was to tell her she would be back in a quarter of an hour—she then went down stairs—she had a little dog which followed after her—I should think it was about 11.20 when she went down stairs—I remained up stairs doing the room; I went down just before 12 o'clock—while I was up stairs nothing attracted my attention, I never heard the least noise—when I came down to the ground floor I saw the dog in the hall—I went down into the kitchen, and on my way down I called out twice "Marguerite, where are you?"—the prisoner made me no answer—I went into the kitchen and saw the prisoner at the kitchen window; out-side; the window opens on to the front area—it is about a yard or more from the floor; it is a very narrow area—the area railings in the street are boarded up—when I got into the kitchen Marguerite told me that Madame came and shut the door as she was out in the area, and locked it and took the key, and had gone out—Marguerite then came into the kitchen with some coals—she came in through the window, and brought some coals with her—I looked at the kitchen door leading to the area and to the coal cellar, it was locked and the key taken away—I said to the prisoner "Madame has not taken the dog," she made no answer—Madame's regular breakfast time was 1 o'clock, at 8 o'clock it was merely tea and bread and butter—the prisoner said that Madame had ordered no breakfast, and she had gone out—about 12.20 or 12.25 the prisoner wished me to go and fetch some beer—I told her I could not get it before 1 o'clock, because on the Sunday the publicans were shut up—she made no answer to that—she asked me once or twice before 1 o'clock to fetch the beer, and I told her I could not get it before 1 o'clock—about 1.5 or 1.10 she got the jug and gave it to me—I went up stairs, and she followed after me to see whether the publican's was open—I went out at the front street door—the prisoner looked out at the door in the direction of the public-house, and said "The public-house is open"—it is on the same side of the way as No. 13, next door but one, in the direction of Piccadilly—I went there and got the beer—I was absent five minutes—when I got back to the door it was shut—I rang the bell, and could get no answer; I rang and knocked again two or three times—I should think I was outside a quarter of an hour or twenty minutes—the prisoner then came to the door and let me in—I asked her why she did not come to answer the door—she said she thought it was Madame—I said if I had not been in the way she would have had to answer the door if Madame came to the door—she said nothing to that—we then went into the kitchen and had some beer—it was usual for me to fetch the beer on Sunday, I have to go for the beer—I did not notice anything in the kitchen, everything was in its place—I did not notice any difference from when I went out—I then went up stairs to dress—the prisoner followed me soon after to her bedroom—she remained upstairs a long time, an hour and a half—I went to the kitchen stairs, and called out and asked her what she was doing, why did not she come down?—she made no answer, she came down soon after—I asked her what she stayed up stairs so long for—she made no answer—in the afternoon, after she had come down stairs, a French lady, a friend of Madame Riel's called; it was not the same lady who was there on the Saturday—she came before 4 o'clock; she came to dinner—she remained till about 7 o'clock in Madame's bedroom, and then left—the prisoner had not prepared anything for dinner, only the soup—I did not notice anything about the prisoner in the afternoon—she said that she should go out to church—there was a pair of gloves lying on the table, I picked them up, and said "Madame has not taken her gloves," but there was no answer—that was in the course of the afternoon—the gloves were lying on the kitchen table—when she said she should go to church I told her she had better not go out, because Madame would be very angry if she came in and wanted anything—she did not say anything to that—she had changed her dress before that—I should think she changed it between 5 and 6 o'clock; it must have been about 6 o'clock, I think—she changed it in the pantry; that is a pantry on the same floor as the kitchen, in the basement, next to the kitchen—she put on a green dress, and hung up the old one in the kitchen—the green dress was a satin cloth—I afterwards saw it before the Magistrate—after she changed her dress she and I went up into the dining-room, and sat down—later in the evening she went out, about 8 o'clock, or a few minutes past 8 o'clock—she then had on a waterproof, the green satin cloth dress, and a bonnet—she said she was going to church, and she should not be late, she should be in by 10 o'clock—I did not let her out; I sat in the kitchen—I afterwards heard the door go—I don't know whether she took any luggage; I can't say—I did not see anything wrapped up anywhere—I know that her box was left behind—she did not return—I remained up till 12 o'clock, and then went to bed—next morning (Monday) I got up just after 6 o'clock—I went into Madame's bedroom on the second floor on my way down—Madame was not there, and everything in the room was undisturbed—I did not go into the kitchen—I went into the drawing-room to move the things, and saw Mademoiselle coming—she returned from Paris that morning with a lady friend of hers—I expected her to return that morning; Madame had told me—the prisoner knew it—when Mademoiselle came I told her what had occurred—she was alarmed, and sent me out to get assistance, and shortly afterwards the police came—I did not see Mademoiselle open the pantry; it was opened while I had gone for assistance—Mademoiselle had a duplicate key of that pantry; Madame had one key and Mademoiselle the other—I afterwards went into the pantry, and saw Madame lying there—I did not disturb the body at all—Dr. Wadham came—I saw the body afterwards carried out into the back parlour.

Cross-examined by MR. POWELL. I had lived with Madame Riel five months—she had three servants during that time, one previous to the prisoner, no other—the other servant remained three weeks—No. 13, is in the narrow part of Park Lane, as you enter from Piccadilly—there are houses on each side, and opposite, and a public-house next door but one—the area of the houses is very narrow—the kitchen window looks out on the area, the cellar is under the pavement of the street—the area railings were boarded up before I went to live there—I remember the prisoner coming into Madame Riel's service—I was almost constantly with her when not engaged up stairs—I had not remarked anything particular, or out of the common, in her manner and demeanour, we got on pretty well together—Madame Riel was a lady of rather quick temper, a passionate person—she never used strong language I could not understand, she would speak very loud—she usually spoke in French—I do not understand French—her manner and gestures were that of an angry and passionate person—I have not been present when she has addressed the prisoner in an angry and passionate manner—it always appeared as if they were angry words, French people always do speak so in talking—the previous cook left because she did not understand French cooking—she did not complain of Madame's temper—the prisoner has complained of it to me, and I have complained to the prisoner that Madame was of very bad temper—I did not complain without supposing that I had a cause—Madame was sometimes ill-tempered to me, very seldom—it was without a cause—men occasionally came to work at the house—I think Madame was once out of temper with a workman; I think that was on the Thursday previous to this occurrence, or about that time; she seemed very angry on that occasion—I only knew the man by sight, he was a painter, working for a Mr. Bernard—I do not know where Bernard's place of business is—I have seen the man since, he came to work on the Monday morning that Madame was found dead, he was going to paint the front of the house; I have seen him since this, I think he has called once since—I do not know where he is to be found, or anything about him—I don't understand French at all, whatever words passed between Madame and the prisoner I did not know what they were—the prisoner speaks very little English, only a few words—we communicated more by motions, by signs—I can't say whether on more than one occasion Madame and the prisoner had high words, I could not tell what was said—it appeared to me that Madame and the prisoner on more than one occasion had high words together; Madame was rather of a suspicious disposition; she suspected things that never occurred, and blamed persons unjustly in consequence, myself amongst others—when she was excited she was in the habit of gesticulating a good deal, she would throw her head up, and throw out her hands—I have observed that that was a habit of hers—she was rather short—I never noticed that when so excited, and throwing her head back, the muscles of the throat were very plainly discernible, and the working of them—on the Sunday morning I had been with the prisoner for some time in the kitchen, before I went up to Madame—I should think I had been with her twenty minutes or a quarter of an hour before Madame rang her bell; we breakfasted together—there was very little conversation between us—I did not notice anything remarkable in her manner or demeanour—Madame was not in the habit of going out very frequently in the morning—she would go out sometimes—I did not know that she was going out that morning, before she said she was going to the Green Park, and so far as I knew, the prisoner could not know it—I often fetched the beer on the week days as well as on the Sunday, not always at the same time, sometimes earlier and sometimes later, according to the exigencies of the house—the lady visitor came about 4 o'clock in the afternoon—about 6.30 in the evening I was in the dining-room with the prisoner—the lady was in the house at that time, she was sitting in Madame's bedroom, up stairs—I did not see the prisoner writing a letter in the course of that afternoon or evening, nor during any part of that day; I never saw her writing—the post-office is just at the corner, not very far off—the prisoner was out until nearly 12 o'clock on the Saturday night—there used to be a cord in the kitchen, over the hot-plate—I very seldom went into the prisoner's bedroom—I never saw any cord in her room—I don't remember whether she was out on the Friday night at all, she might have gone out, she could not have been out for half an hour without my knowing it—I went out sometimes, and sometimes for soma time, it all depended upon what I had to do—I have been to church—I did not go on that Sunday—I did not leave the house that Sunday, except for the beer—on previous Sunday. I had gone out, either for a walk or to church, and remained out some times.

Re-examined. The Duke of Cambridge's stables are below No. 13—the houses opposite are inhabited—French people speak very loud, they always talk like as if they were having angry words; it sounds like it—that is what I mean by saying that Madame Kiel was passionate; she spoke in a high tone—the painter, from Mr. Bernard's, was cleaning the windows—he had been there three or four times to clean them—I have only seen him once since; he came fur some things he had left; that was the week before this happened—he was there on the Saturday—the rope that used to be over the hot-plate in the kitchen has not been there since the kitchen was cleaned—the kitchen had been whitewashed, and the rope was taken away at that time, and I never saw it after; I don't know what became of it—I saw the cord that was found about the body of Madame—I can't say whether it was the cord that had been in the kitchen—I should think it was five or six weeks before, since I had last seen that cord—I never noticed any cord in the prisoner's bed-room—we occupied separate rooms on the same floor—I have often seen the prisoner write—she could not have been out an hour or half an hour, on the Friday, without ray knowing it, but I don't remember whether she went out or not—the dinner hour was 7 or 7.30—she was at home with me at dinner that Friday—I did not sit in the kitchen very long after that meal; I went to bed very early, at 9.30, sometimes—the prisoner went to bed at the same time, I think, on the Friday.

JURY. Q. Was the prisoner a passionate woman, or not? A. Yes, she was a very passionate woman, and a woman who acted on the impulse of the moment; I have seen her put out, sometimes, very much, and throw herself back—I say she was passionate because she spoke loud, as her mistress did.

MR. POWELL. Q. Do you remember that Madame was out on the Friday, and remained out until 8 o'clock, or nearly so? A. 7.30, I believe it was—the prisoner and I had been working together the whole of that afternoon—I remember the day before, Thursday, dinner being ordered at 7 o'clock—the prisoner was not sent to get the provisions for that dinner till rather late—she used to go to Leicester Square, of that neighbourhood, to purchase French provisions—I can't say how long before 7 o'clock she came back with those provisions, it could not be long before 7 o'clock—I don't remember that Madame was very angry that dinner was not ready; I have no recollection about it—I don't remember that high words passed between them on that occasion; I might have been up stairs—when Madame returned, on the Friday, about 7.30 or 8 o'clock, she brought some mutton with her—we had had something to eat since breakfast; we had bread and cheese, and some beer, no regular meal—it was known that a lady was coming to dine with Madame on the Sunday—I did not know it before Sunday morning; I don't know when Marguerite knew—Madame told me, as she was going out, that a lady was coming, as she was going down into the kitchen.

MR. ATTORNEY-GENERAL. Q. I do not understand about these high words; were they on the Thursday? A. Yes—the last time I had heard high words between Madame and the prisoner was once during the week, I think in the early part of the week—that was the last time I heard it.

MADLLE. JULE RIEL (Interpreted). I am the daughter of the late Madame Riel—I lived with her at 13, Park Lane—the household consisted of my mother, myself, and two servants, Eliza Watts and the prisoner—I can't say exactly the date when the prisoner came into our service, but about two months before my mother's death—about 20th March I gave her notice to leave; it was one week's notice, like in France—she said she wanted to stay the month, or to be paid at once—on 31st March I left London for Paris—on 8th April, I returned to London, and arrived in Park Lane about 7 o'clock in the morning—Eliza Watts opened the door to me—I asked her whether the prisoner was there, she said No, she had gone out the night before, and that probably she would return on that morning—she told me that mamma had said on the Sunday morning, at 11.30, that she was going out to the Green Park for a walk, and that since that time she had not seen her, and that she was in very much trouble about her—I fancied perhaps that she had gone to meet me some part of the way—I sent Eliza Watts out at once to fetch somebody to me—while she was out, I looked about the house to see whether mamma had left a letter for me—I first went up stairs, then I came down to the kitchen and the coal cellar, and at last the small place called the pantry, on the same floor as the dining-room; that pantry was always kept locked—there were two keys to it, one mamma had, and I had one—I had my key with me that morning; I always had it—I found the pantry door locked; I opened it with my key—there was an iron safe kept in that pantry; there were two keys to that, one I had, and one my mother had—she was also in the habit of carrying other keys about with her, on a keyring that she always wore—when I went to Paris, I took my key of the pantry with me; I always had it with me, and I had also a bunch of keys on a ring—when I opened the pantry door, the first thing I saw was the cloak of my mother, I lifted the cloak up, and then I saw mamma—I saw that the safe was open—I became very much alarmed, and ran out into the street, and then I recollected that 'Dr. Wadham was living next door, and I went to him—I had not disturbed anything in the pantry; I did nothing else but lift the cloak up, I did not move the body at all—Dr. Wadham did not come back to the house with me, but he came a very little time after—when I returned to the house, I heard that the police were there, but I did not go to see—I was sent for into the kitchen for the purpose of seeing whether I knew a dress that was there—I did know it; it was the prisoner's dress; it was shown to me by one of the police constables; it was a maroon brown dress, which the prisoner used to wear—before I left for Paris, I had given my mother some bank notes, about 30l.—I don't know whether they were 5l. notes; I did not look at them; I gave them to her either on the Thursday, Friday, or Saturday, I can't say the exact day—my mother kept her money in the safe—I had got the bank notes from Lord Lucan, perhaps only ten minutes before I gave them to my mother—after the body was removed to another room, I saw that the safe was open, and there was no money in it—there was no key in the safe, there remained in it a little box containing jewels, some gloves and shares—my mother always carried a porte-monnaie—she sometimes wore rings, not generally—on Friday, 12th April, I again went to Paris to accompany the body over there—whilst I was in Paris, I was shown by the French police a porte-monnaie and also some other things—the little box that contained the jewels was locked, I had one key of it; I am not certain whether I did not have both of them, there were two keys; the key I had I took to Paris—besides the porte-monnaie, the French police also showed me some keys, a ring, and some gold, which they said had been found in the porte-monnaie, the porte-monnaie, the keys, and the ring belonged to my mother—the porte-monnaie was empty when I saw it—I was also shown the pantry key, and a key belonging to a little room up stairs—nothing was kept in that room but dresses—I also saw another key, which I at first supposed was the key of the railings gate, but which I found out was the one belonging to the kitchen-door—the key of the little room up stairs was one that my mother was in the habit of carrying—I had not a second one of that—Mr. Raviart and Mr. Hintschbeoger, of the French police, were present when these things were shown to me—Mr. Massey, the Commissary of Police in Paris, produced the keys to me—my mother's full name was Marie Caroline Besant Kiel—she was 46 years of age.

Cross-examined by MR. POWELL. I have been in England several times, not consecutively, sometimes six months at a. time—I have been here since the war, September—I have resided in Park Lane since January, at the time of the war last year, since January, 1871—I am not residing there now—my servant, Eliza Watts, resides there, and I go there sometimes—it is always the custom in France to give a week's notice only, to domestic servants—I know that perfectly well—the prisoner was willing to go when we gave her notice, if we paid her her wages—she was paid her wages by the month, and sometimes she asked for Borne money in advance—she required a month's wages or a month's notice—this pantry or closet contained a safe, in which the jewel-box was kept—I was in the habit of wearing valuable jewels and keeping them in that box—the box is not here—my mamma always carried the porte-monnaie about with her—she sometimes wore a ring of value—I do not know whether she sometimes carried a ring or rings in her portemonnaie—I received the notes either on Thursday, Friday, or Saturday, I cannot say which, before I left for Paris—I gave them to my mamma immediately—she was in the house when I received them—I do not know whether she had a key of the jewel-box, she had it sometimes and that is the reason I state that I do not know whether at that time she had it—I cannot tell whether I had two keys at Paris, I did not pay attention to that—if my mamma had the key she would carry it on the ring on which she kept her keys—I have not looked, and for that reason I cannot say how many keys of the jewel-box I have now—I have several keys coming from the same warehouse, and I cannot say—one key I always had, and have now, but whether I have a second one I do not know; both keys resemble each other—I cannot say whether I had both keys, because mamma was in the habit very often to return me the other key back—I cannot say whether I have more than one key to that box now, but if I saw the box I could tell you by trying the keys—since my return from Paris I have not seen the keys which my mamma used to carry.

Re-examined. The house still belongs to my deceased mother—I put a married policeman with his wife in there to keep it—I have not resided there—numbers of people came there, which made it difficult to live there—nobody can go in or out on account of them—the jewel-box is at home in my possession, it is a heavy iron box, about 12 in. by 8 in.—I will take care that it is here to-morrow.

COURT. Q. Did you keep any money, or jewels, or ornaments in that little box, or was it kept entirely for your mother's use? A. No, only for my use, only for jewels—I put them in—my mother did not put what money she had into the small box—in the small box I put only my jewels, and my mamma put her money in the safe—I had one key of the safe, one of the pantry, and one of the small safe—I call that little box a small safe—I perform at St. James's Theatre, and the articles I used there were usually kept in that box for my use.

WILLIAM PEEK (Policeman C 194). On Monday morning, 8th April, about 7.45, I was on duty in Park Lane—I was called to No. 13—I saw a lady standing at the door, a friend of Madlle. Kiel's, who was with her—in consequence of what was said to me I went into a room at the end of the passage leading from the front door, and saw the dead body of a woman, dressed—her face was on the floor, her knees on the ground, and her legs sticking upwards so that you could see the soles of her boots—her head was against an iron safe fixed to the wall in one corner of the room, in the right-hand corner as you went in—I did not measure the room, but it was about 12 ft. by 6 ft., I believe—the feet were towards the door, as you went in—I removed the body about 18 in., as near as I can say, from the safe out towards the middle of the room—a rope was once round the neck, with a slip noose under the left cheek, the end round the neck was not loose, but there was about 6 ft. to spare, and the other part was hanging loose over the body, and the other end was twisted twice round the handle of the door of the safe, which was I suppose about a foot from the floor—the rope was tight round the neck, and was just put slack round the handle of the door, it would slip round—it was loose round the handle—I was there when Dr. Wadham came—I was sent to the station for the Inspector, and Sergeant Butcher came—we then, by Dr. Wadham's direction, removed the body into the back parlour—I had lifted the face off the ground before that to recognise who it was, and found it was the lady of the house.

CHARLES BUTCHER (Detective Officer C). On 8th April I went to 13, Park Lane, and found Dr. Wadham there—I saw Peek remove the body into the small parlour—when I got there the rope was still on the body—I have heard what Peek has said, it is correct—she was lying on her face, her feet were straight up, and you could see the bottoms of her boots plainly—I examined the pocket of her dress, there was nothing in it—she had one gold ring set with a diamond on this finger of her left hand—I do not mean two rings, she had not a wedding-ring on—I found some false hair in a bonnet, which is here, lying between her and the sofa—I took the rope off the neck, and then examined the safe, which was open, and there was a little iron cashbox in it—for a cash-box it was a large one, but it was a solid iron box and heavy—it would be a very heavy cash-box, but they call it a cash-box—it was about 8 in. or 10 in. long, and about as wide as this book—when I lifted it up I found it heavy—a key was produced—I did not find it there, but at the time I was there it was found—Madlle. Kiel had it—there were also in the safe besides the little box some papers, French bonds, or something like that, but no money, only the jewellery—that was in the small box—after the little box had been found Madlle. Riel produced a key which opened it, and some jewels were found in it—the key of the safe was found—I do not know whether Madlle. Riel had one—she produced a key of the pantry—there was no key but her, s—I was not present when the bunch of keys was found.

Cross-examined by MR. POWELL. There was not a gold wedding ring on the finger, as well as the ring which had a diamond in it—if I have said "On the third finger of the left hand were a wedding ring, and a ring with a stone," that is evidently a mistake—my evidence was read over to me before I signed it, and I explained that there was only one ring—there was only a gold ring with one stone, no wedding ring—I do not think I signed that statement; if I did, it was an oversight at the time, an error, but I don't think I said it—I have a distinct recollection of explaining that there was only one ring—I have not got the diamond ring, it was left there—it is not customary to take possession of anything found on a body, unless it shows marks of violence—I left it on the finger—Dr. Wadham was in the room, and Peek, and Inspector Hambling, and Madlle. Riel—I did not see the body again till the day of the inquest—I do not know whether the ring was on then; she was then in the coffin, I have never seen the ring since—I saw the jewel box, I did not take an inventory of its contents—the minute it was discovered I went away to make enquiries out of the house, and left Hambling and another sergeant in charge of the case—I do not think it is the practice of the police in such cases to take a note of what is found, but only of property which is missing, things which are right in the house we should leave there—no inventory was taken of the jewel-case, to my knowledge—I can form no idea of the value of the jewellery—there was no sign of a struggle in the pantry—every thing was in perfect order, as far as I could judge.

Re-examined. I have been in the police fourteen years, and never heard of taking an inventory of things in the house, only of what is missing; I have never been present in a house where a jewel-box was found, where there had been a murder, but where robberies have been committed, I have—under the circumstances it did not occur to me to take an inventory—we should take it for granted that the jewel-box was safe, and everything in it, they were things that would speak for themselves.

HENRY HAMBLING (Police Inspector). On Monday morning, 8th April, about 9 o'clock, I went to 13, Park Lane—the body of Madame Riel had then been removed into the back parlour—I proceeded to make a search, and on a shelf in the pantry, near the safe, found some false hair and a bonnet—I examined the hair and found in it some cinders and small chips of wood, and a small fish bone—there was a fire-place in the pantry, but the fire had not been lighted—some small pieces of charred paper were in the grate, paper which had been burnt and thrown into the fire-place—I found a hair-pin on the mat in the coal cellar, and another on the stairs leading to the kitchen—when I got into the kitchen, I saw the kitchen door which leads to the coal-cellar, it was locked, and there was no key there; it locks from the inside, you cannot lock it from the outside—I unscrewed the lock, removed it, and opened the door; it leads into the area or the cellar—when I got into the cellar, I found a hair-pin on the mat—I was present when a lady's comb was picked up by Inspector Pay—the mat is just at the entrance of the coal-cellar—there is a dusthole there and cinders and chips—it is the ordinary dust-hole of the house—the chips were small pieces of wood, such as arise from wood, they were not burnt—I afterwards on that day received from the witness Watts, this 1 pair of gloves (produced) and I found in the kitchen this dress hanging up—I examined it at the time; it was not torn, it was in good repair, but I found on the left-hand sleeve a spot which I believe to be blood—it was just inside the cuff, other spots have been cut out by Dr. Letheby but I observed them—I examined the safe, and saw a railway bond found there—I searched to see if I could find any keys, but found none at that time—I was examined as a witness at the Police Court—after the first day's examination, Inspector Druscovitch made a communication to me in consequence of which I went to the pantry where the body was found, and behind a beer-barrel, on a shelf, I found eight keys on one ring and two on another—I find that one of them fits the iron safe, and two are latch-keys of the street door—I also on that occasion tried four keys in the presence of Inspector Pay, which were produced by the French police, and found that one was the key of the pantry, in which the body was found, and the other, the key of the kitchen leading from the coalcellar, the door from which I removed the lock; another was the key of a sort of press up stairs, where Madlle. Riel kept her dresses, and which I found locked, and the fourth key fits the padlock on the prisoner's box—on the Monday morning I went to the prisoner's box, in her room on the third floor; it is an ordinary servant's box—I forced it open, and found several pieces of her dresses and boots and paper, and a book with her name in it—there was no rope in her box, or in her room—I saw no appearance of any struggle in the kitchen or pantry—the prisoner's box was not packed at all, her things were lying in different parts of the room, such as under linen, and dresses were hanging on the door.

Cross-examined by Mr. POWELL. I have had sixteen years' experience in the police—I applied that experience, and I found no trace whatever of any struggle—the floor of the pantry is stone, and of the kitchen brick—I only saw one ring on the deceased's finger—there might have been more, but I only noticet a diamond ring, which, at Madlle. Riel's suggestion, was removed from the finger by the Coroner's officer, and handed to her—I am not positive whether ther was any other ring—I think Madlle. has it still—I saw several letters in it, and some railway bonds Riel opened it—I saw the jewell-box open when I arrived—I think Madlle. and jewellery—I did not take a note of the contents—it was handed to her, and I have not seen it since—it was not produced at the Inquest, nor any of its contents.

JOHN TURNER . I am a cab driver and proprietor—about 8 o'clock on sunday evening, 7th April, I was with my cab at the corner of Park Lane, and a woman stopped my cab, and got on to the foot-board—she had no luggage whatever—she told me to drive to Victoria Station—she was a foreigner, and spoke English very badly—my impression is that the prisoner is the woman—I asked her, for lshortness, "Chatham and Dover?"—she had then got into the cab, and she spoke through the tra "Victoria Station"—I drove to the Brighton Terminus of the Voctoria Station—she got out there, and handed me a sixpenny and a threepenny pience—I had some difficulty lin making her understand and a fate was ls.—eventually she took the sixpence back, and gave me a shilling, and let me keep the threepenny piece—she asked me a question which I—I pointed in that direction.; and then she ran off—I got another fare from the station, land drove away—her dress was dark—I gave information on the Tuesday morning, form what I read in the newspapers.

Cross-examined by MR. POWELL. She did appear to know lthe value of English; money, but she appeared to make a mistake, and I had a difficulty in making her understand that she had given me 6d. and not 1s. there was no rope in her box, or in her room—I saw no appearance of any struggle in the kitchen or pantry—the prisoner's box was not packed at all, her things were lying in different parts of the room, such as under linen, and dresses were hanging on the door.

Cross-examined by MR. POWELL. I have had sixteen years' experience in the police—I applied that experience, and I found no trace whatever of any struggle—the floor of the pantry is stone, and of the kitchen brick—I only saw one ring on the deceased's finger—there might have been more, but I only noticed a diamond ring, which, at Madlle. Riel's suggestion, was removed from the finger by the Coroner's officer, and handed to her—I am not positive whether there was any other ring—I presume she has it still—I saw the jewel-box open when I arrived—I think Madlle. Riel opened it—I saw several letters in it, and some railway bonds and jewellery—I did not take a note of the contents—it was handed to her, and I have not seen it since—it was not produced at the Inquest, nor any of its contents.

JOHN TURNER . I am a cab driver and proprietor—about 8 o'clock on Sunday evening, 7th April, I was out with my cab at the corner of Park Lane and a woman stopped my cab, and got on to the foot-board—she had no luggage whatever—she told me to drive to Victoria Station—she was a foreigner, and spoke English very badly—my impression is that the prisoner is the woman—I asked her, for shortness, "Chatham and Dover?"—she had then got into the cab, and she spoke through the trap "Victoria Station"—I drove to the Brighton Terminus of the Victoria Station—she got out there, and handed me a sixpenny and a threepenny piece—I had some difficulty in making her understand that the fare was 1s.—eventually she took the sixpence back, and gave me a shilling, and let me keep the threepenny piece—she asked me a question which I understood to mean "Is this the way to the Chatham and Dover Station?"—I pointed in that direction, and then she ran off—I got another fare from the station, and drove away—her dress was dark—I gave information on the Tuesday morning, from what I read in the newspapers.

Cross-examined by MR. POWELL. She did appear to know the value of English money, but she appeared to make a mistake, and I had a difficulty in making her understand that she had given me 6d. and not 1s.

Re-examined. The difficulty was her not understanding me, and my not understanding her.

RICHARD WERNER . I live at 2, Lansdown Terrace, Brixton—I am a clerk at the Victoria Station, and act as interpreter there—on Sunday evening, 7th April, about 8.20, someone tapped at the window of my office in the station; I opened it, and saw the prisoner there—she had dark clothes on, but it was evening, and I cannot say what colour—she spoke in French, and asked me when the next train was going to start for Paris—I told her the cheap service train had started before at 6.25—she asked when the next cheap service train would start, and I said "At 6.25 p.m."—there is only one daily—that was 6.25 on Monday evening—she asked whether a train would start before—I said "There is one in a quarter of an hour's time, but it is an express train, first class only; it goes at 8.35"—she said she should reach Paris sooner by that than by the cheap service—I said "Yes," and she said she would go by the 8.35—I accompanied her to the booking office, and asked for a first-class ticket for Paris, single; she paid with a 5l. note, and received two sovereigns in change, the fare being 3l.—I asked her whether she had luggage—she said "No"—I took her to the platform; the guard put her in a compartment, and I saw the train start—I saw something in the newspapers on 9th April, and gave information to the police.

Cross-examined by MR. POWELL. There are three trains to Paris, from Victoria, daily, two express, and one cheap service train—the morning express leaves at 7.40, the cheap service train at 6.25, and the night express at 8.35—I am the only person employed as interpreter, and am the only person to whom foreigners would be referred; except in my, absence there might be a clerk who knows French.

JACQUES BOUILLION (Through an interpreter). I am a silver-plater and burnisher, and live, with my wife, at 3, Passage St. Maurice, Paris—about two years ago, I was house-porter at 192, Rue St. Denis. (MR. POWELL objected to the reception of this witness's evidence, he not having been examined before, and no copy of his evidence having been delivered. THE ATTORNEY-GENERAL replied that the witness had come over from Paris, instead of his wife, who had recently been confined, and was unable to come. MR. POWELL stated that his objection was not that the husband came instead of the wife, but that neither husband nor wife had been examined before, and no notice had been given of the evidence of either of them; a letter, dated 11th June, had been sent to the prisoner's attorney, but it had only come to his hands that morning. THE ATTORNEY GENERAL stated that the Crown always carefully declined to give a copy of the evidence, and he would never be a party to anything else, Out a letter had been sent, giving the heads of what the proofs would be. MR. POWELL replied that he had not had time to read the document. THE COURT offered MR. POWELL the opportunity of deferring his cross-examination of the witness till to-morrow, if he wished it; and stated that in "Reg. v. Palmer" the Lord Chief Justice had said that when a witness could give important evidence, and was not on the back of the bill, he thought it was proper to furnish the evidence to the other side; yet it had not been decided that a witness could not be examined because a copy of his evidence had not been given. MR. POWELL stated that he would defer his cross-examination till to-morrow, if it became necessary for the prisoner's attorney to confer with her.) The first time the prisoner came to see us, she came to the Boulevard de la Garde, where we were living—my wife and the prisoner are natives of the same village in Belgium—from 1868 down to September, 1870, I had seen her only once or twice—in September, 1870, she came and stayed with us some time, she being out of place—I cannot say the exact time she stayed—she paid nothing to me, at that time, for her board and keep, and after a time I told my wife to tell her I could not afford it, as I was out of work at the time, and she went to her cousin, No. 9, Rue d'ltalie—between the time she went away and April, 1872, I saw her sometimes, but not often—on 8th April, this year, about 10 o'clock at night, she came, alone; she had no luggage, only an umbrella in her hand—I did not expect her, and had not heard from her—she slept that night at my house—I had received a letter from her on 4th April—I cannot say what has become of it; it has been mislaid somewhere in the house—I have tried to find it—I last saw it on the Saturday before the prisoner arrived—I heard it read by some man employed by Mr. Gerling—I can't say what has become of it, I was taken into custody at the time when the house was searched, and therefore I don't know what became of it—before coming to England to give evidence, the letter was searched for at home, but could not be found—I looked for it personally; she stated in that letter that she was coming to Paris, in the first days of May, and would pay me what she owed me; she also said in it "If you want to be paid before that time, write to me and I will send you the money by post, and answer me the letter, "—knowing that she was coming in the first days of May, I did not think it necessary to answer that letter, and I did not answer it—when she came on 8th April, she said "Good evening," and sat down after a few minutes—she asked me whether I had answered her letter—I said "No"—I don't recollect telling her why—when this passed I was alone with her—my wife came into the room a few minutes afterwards, I called her; we then had some conversation together, and the prisoner said "I am going to pay you what I owe you"—I asked her how it was that she came so early, as she said her intention was to come in the first days of May—she replied that her master and mistress had decided to come at once, and that they lived at the Boulevard de Mazas—she paid Madame Bouillion, in my presence, 125 francs, in English gold—she asked my wife whether she preferred to take it in gold, or have a bank note—I saw a paper resembling a bank note in her hand—my wife said that she preferred gold, as she did not know whether the note was of value in France, and she said to her "Pay me the sixty-five francs which I lent you, and as to the board and lodging, I won't charge you anything for it"—Marguerite said "Take this, I know it is not all I owe you, but I will pay you the remainder at some future time"—she wore a green dress the first time she came—I saw that dress hanging up at the door of my room next day—I went to bed that evening, and left my wife and the prisoner sitting up together, also an employe, a young man—I saw her next day for a little time—she then wore a grey dress—she slept there two nights, on the 8th and 9th—I did not see her again after the 9th—besides the letter of the 4th, I saw another letter of the prisoner's in the hands of the police—this (produced) is it, it is her writing; my wife's name is Victoire—(Translation of letter read:—"London, 6th April. My dear Victoire. If you have not written, do not write, I leave this evening for Paris. Your devoted friend, Dixblanc Marguerite. No, do not expect me, perhaps I shall never see Paris again, nor even my parents; I shall try to leave for America, and if I arrive there I will give you my address; so good bye, my dear Victoire, and think frequently of me. I conclude by kissing you with all my heart. Dixblanc Marguerite"). When she paid my wife the English gold, I saw her take it out from her porte-monnaie—the green dress remained there till the day she left, I did not know it was there afterwards, I only saw it afterwards at the prefecture of police; my wife handed it over to the police, I did not know that such an article was left behind—it was on the Sunday following that I saw it at the prefecture—I was arrested on the Friday, and my wife the Sunday following—I was detained in custody for several weeks—my wife and I were then examined, and discharged on 30th May—my wife was confined in St. Lazare Prison, on 21st May—she had a very bad time and is hardly up out of bed now.

LOUIS JULE FERDINAND RAVIART . I am an Inspector of Municipal Police at Paris—the first information that I had about this matter was from Mr. Druscovitch, the English Inspector of Police, who came over to Paris—on 11th April, at 3 o'clock in the afternoon, I went to 192, Rue St. Denis, where Bouillion was then living—that was the first time—I then saw Madame Bouillion—I took possession of this letter and envelope, the letter was in a little box which women use to put their thimble and cotton in, and the box was on a table in the lodging—I went there again the same evening, and then saw both Mr. and Madame Bouillion, and had a very long conversation with them—I did not take possession of anything then—at 7 o'clock next morning I went there again, and saw Mr. Bouillion, and arrested him, and an hour afterwards I went there again and took possession of a green dress—I did not take it, I received it from Madame Bouillion, and also a cloak and jacket, brown colour, maroon—I at once examined the pocket of the green dress, this (produced)is it—Mr. Massey, the Police Magistrate in Paris, bad it after me, and it was made up into a parcel, sealed up, and given to the Embassy—in the pocket of that green dress I found this portemonnaie and a book, or livret—the name of Margnerite Dixblanc is in the book—the porte-monnaie contained these eight English bank notes, I marked them—I at first thought they were all 5l. notes, but when we came before the Magistrate who had the matter in hand, there was one of 20l. and one of 10l.; however, I don't even know it now very well—I marked the notes and took them to Mr. Massey, the Instruction Magistrate—in the same portemonnaie I found an English pawn ticket, here it is, attached to the bank notes, with my mark—I also found this ring in the porte-monnaie—upon this I took Madame Bouillion into custody—that was on the 12th, in the morning, the same day as Mr. Bouillion—he had been arrested an hour before her—it was on account of finding these things that I arrested Madame Bouillion an hour afterwards—when I took her she handed me this little box, containing 125 francs in English gold, three sovereigns, and four half-sovereigns.

(At the request of MR. POWELL, the following translation of an entry in the livret was read:—"I the undersigned recognise that the named Marguerite Dixblanc has served me with honesty, entered on 8th June, left on 16th August, 1870—Paris." Signed "Wilhelm 54, Faubourg, St. Honore—I say she entered on 8th June 1870. Wilhelm.")

Gross-examined by MR. POWELL. I first saw the green dress on the morning of 12th April, it was then in the hands of Madame Bouillion, who was going to give it to me; the prisoner was not there then—I had been to Madame Bouillion's twenty or thirty times before I arrested her—I knew that she had a green dress in her possession before she showed it to me—I did not know it from her, she had not told me—I had had a telegraphic description of the prisoner, and also of the dress she wore, and it was impossible to mistake it—I had seen Madame Bouillion twenty times before she handed me the dress; every time I saw her it was on this affair; when she handed me the dress, it had in the pocket the porte-monnaie and the pawn ticket, and also a pocket-handkerchief not belonging to Marguerite Dixblanc—it was Madame Bouillion's, she told me so herself, and it was given to her as her property—the ring was in the first compartment of the porte-monnaie in the first fold (replacing it there)—I discovered that the notes were not 5l. notes at the Judge of Instruction's, Monsieur Massey, that was I think on the Saturday, the day after—I had marked the notes immediately after taking them, but did not discover it then—I last saw Madame Bouillion on the Monday following 11th April—that is since she was discharged, it was when there was a question about Monsieur Bouillion coming to London—that was last Saturday—when you asked me the question before, I said that I had seen her some early day in April—I thought you meant while in durance vile, not when she had her liberty—when I saw her last Saturday she was at Passage Maurice, at her own house, or it may be her sister's—I do not know whether it was on the first or second floor—I am in the habit of seeing houses of six or seven stories high, and I do not count—she was sitting up, and dressed as women usually are—I saw nothing about her which looked as if she could not go out for a walk—her husband was present, I cannot say whether he lives there—that was not the house where I had gone to see her before—I brought the prisoner over to England; we talked about different subjects on the voyage, and occasionally the conversation turned upon Madame Riel, and she told me how the matter happened, and complained of Madame Kiel's conduct towards her—(THE COURT considered that Mr. Powell ought not to ask the effect of the conversation, because the prisoner's statement was not receivable in her own favour, although it would be evidence for the Crown)—I made no statement to her about Madame Riel—I did not tell her that I knew Madame Riel's antecedents; I want to explain, what I told her was when she complained of the treatment she had received from Madame Kiel, I said "It is very probable, if you were tried in France, there would be extenuating circumstances found," upon which she replied, "Yes, but unfortunately in England, one who has given death, dies"—I said nothing of the cause of death of Madame Kiel's husband—I did not tell her I knew he had died of grief at her conduct,—I swear I said nothing of the kind—I had not known Madame Kiel previously, and had never seen her—I have not made enquiries about her antecedents, nor was I ordered to do so—I belong to the detective part of the Municipal police.

Re-examined. Till this matter occurred, I never saw or heard of the deceased; the only thing I knew was the name of Madlle. Kiel as an artiste at the theatre—during the time I paid these visits to the Bouillions, I was always on the look out for the prisoner, and other French officers were engaged in the same business, nine of us—I was not present when she was taken in custody—I cannot say in whose house it was that I last saw Madame Bouillion, I know that her sister lives in the same house—I saw them both there, and I cannot say what storey belongs to either—I know that Madame Bouillion has been recently confined, and I do not think she could undertake such a voyage.

MR. POWELL. Q. You did not trouble yourself about the value of the bank notes, you only marked them? A. That was all, I simply marked them: I did not know the value—the Prefect of Police sent an Englishman before the Magistrate, and when he had the notes handed to him, he said "They are not all 5l. notes, there is a 20l. and a 10l. note"—after I once heard that from the Englishman, I knew it.


Cross-examined by MR. POWELL. My wife had known the prisoner from her childhood—I had not seen her before she came to my house in 1868—she remained about five or six weeks with us at that time, and during that time she conducted herself in a perfectly proper manner—she seemed to be kindly disposed to those who treated her well—I always believed her to be of an amiable temper and candid—I had not the slightest reason to suspect her honesty—when thwarted she was of a passionate disposition, a person liable to strong and sudden impulses, but she had a good heart for all that—my wife was confined on the 21st May—she is not able to come herself to give evidence; she only just began to get up a little—the prisoner only stayed two nights when she came in April last—I did not see her after that till I saw her in this Court—I have heard where she was arrested—it was about two leagues or seven or eight miles from where I was residing in April—I was not aware that she had left anything in my house—I heard nothing of her from the time she left until I heard of this crime—I had no communication with her—I had been arrested when the green dress was given to the police.

THOMAS GERARD (Interpreted). I live at 18, Rue de Porte St. Denis—I am a coal dealer—I only know the prisoner since 13th April—I had seen her once last year, about June or July—I had not seen her again until I saw her on 13th April—I then saw her at our own door—she had arrived there whilst I was serving customers with coal—it was about 10.30 in the morning—I did not recognise her at first—after I had served two customers in the shop, I called to her and said "And you, Madame, what is your pleasure?—she answered me in patois, "So you don't recognise me; so you don't know me"—I recognised her then by her talk and the voice—I asked her how she was and what she came for to St. Denis—she said "Pretty well, and you?"—I said our house matters did not go very well as my wife was ill—she asked whether it was a long time since I had seen her father—she told me afterwards she had been looking for him, but she said first "Have you seen my father?—I told her I had seen her father between Christmas and New Year, that I knew he was looking after her and would like to see her—I asked her afterwards about Victoire Bouillion, but before that she told me she had been looking all over Paris for her father and could not find him—I asked her whether it was a long time since she saw Victoire—she said that she had seen her on the Monday and had taken some money to her that she owed her—by Victoire I meant Madame Bouillion—she said she had seen Victoire Bouillion on Monday, the 8th—the conversation about Victoire took place after dinner on the Saturday—she asked me whether I did not know of a servant's place in St. Denis—I asked her where she came from—she said she came from the Faubourg St. Honore without mentioning any address—I told her that at St. Denis there were no aristocratic people, and that she had much better have remained at the Rue St. Honore, as there the aristocracy lived, and I asked her the reason why she left—she told me she had had a quarrel with her mistress—I told her that that was no reason to leave a neighbourhood, simply on account of a quarrel with her mistress—some more conversation ensued—during this time I had to serve some more customers, after which she said she had had a fight with her mistress—I said even that was not a motive for running away, because it depended who was in the wrong—some more conversation took place—I was always serving persons during this time, when she said "I have given her a good hiding; perhaps she is dead"—I asked her for what reason she had the fight in this way—she said her mistress wanted to send her away without paying her her month's wages—up to this time I understood her to be speaking of the mistress in the Faubourg St. Honore—after she had admitted everything to me she said it had taken place in London—she told me how it had happened with her mistress, and the details of it—I asked her how she had managed it and why it had happened—she said her mistress wanted to dismiss her, send her away, and would not pay her; that on Sunday at 11 o'clock her mistress came down into the kitchen and said "You must leave," to which the accused said that she would leave provided she paid her, otherwise she would not leave—to which her mistress said "If you like to stop you shall stop, or may stop, but I will make you suffer for it," at which the prisoner became angry and caught hold of her mistress by the throat and had thrown her down on the ground, but the mistress got up again and was going to take hold of some article in the kitchen; that she, the prisoner, seeing that, struck her a blow underneath the chin; that she fell down backwards and gasped twice; when she saw that she dragged her into the coal cellar; that when she was in the coal cellar the lady's maid came down stairs, and that hearing her come down she locked the door of the cellar and put her back against it; that the lady's maid came into the kitchen and asked her where her mistress was, to which she replied that the mistress had gone out for a little while; that then the lady's maid asked her for some coals, upon which she said there were none—I think she said after that the lady's maid had gone up stairs to a higher storey, and that whilst she was up stairs she, the prisoner, had taken the body and put it on her back, but that she could not do so as her strength began to fail; and as she could not put the body on her back, she had put a cord round the neck and dragged it into the pantry—I omitted to state that she told me that she had locked all the kitchen doors—she told me where it had all happened before this—after she told me she had killed her mistress she said it was not in Paris but in London—I asked her how she could have managed to escape from England, and whether she had her papers, to which she said "Yes"—she told me she was going to take the 6 o'clock train, but that she was too late, and that she was obliged to take the 8 o'clock train, and there was only first class—I asked her how she could have waited so long, and how she had passed her afternoon—and she said she had taken two bottles of wine, and also some beer with the lady's maid—I asked what it cost to come from London, and she said 3l.—and as I did not know the value of a pound, I asked her how much it was—she said "25 francs"—I said "So you have paid 75 francs to come from London?"—she said "Yes"—she told me that when she was crossing over from England to France her young mistress was coming the other way back, they were crossing each other by boat, the two steamers met—after she had admitted the crime she showed me some newspapers—neither I nor my wife could or would believe her story, and then she took from her pocket a newspaper, which I believe was the Petite Presse, and said "Look at this column"—the police came just at the moment, at the end of her story where she admitted the crime, they arrested her and took her away in a cab.

Cross-examined by MR. POWELL. I knew her father—I know nothing of his family—I don't know anything about his conduct or character—I don't know where he liven now—at the time of her arrest he lived at the Garde Matelst, between Versailles and St. Cyr—she spoke to me nearly all in French, and some of it in Patois—she told me many words in Patois—the statement about giving her a good hiding and perhaps she was dead, was in Patois—when she said her mistress was about to sieze something in the kitchen, I understood that it was to give her a blow with, and it was then she struck her under the chin, at once—she did not say anything about the general conduct of Madame Riel towards her—the police interrupted me from saying any more to her.

EMILE HINSCHEERGER (Interpreted). I am an inspector of police in Paris—I assisted Mons. Raviart in making enquiries about this case, it was on a Saturday, whether it was 13th April I can't say, I think it was—I went to 18, Rue de Porte, St. Denis—I had been there before several times that day—that was where Gerard, the last witness, lived—it is a coal and charcoal shop—the last time I went there that day was in the evening—I saw someone sitting on the door-step of the shop—I did not know then it was the prisoner, but afterwards I knew it—I had seen her photograph on that very day—I had not seen her before—I first spoke to Mr. Gerard—he came out to me—about half a minute afterwards I spoke to the prisoner—I asked her whether her name was Marguerite Dixblanc—she said "Yes, sir"—she did not know me—I did not tell her who I was, I was in plain clothes—I told her I would take her with me, that I was going to take her to her father—she said she did not know me—I said "That does not matter, I know you well"—she said "Where does my father live?—I said "At Versailles'—she said "I have here a parcel which. I want to take with me"—I went into the coal-shop with her and asked for the parcel, and I received one from Madame Gerard—I opened it and it contained a mass-book, a silk handkerchief, and a waterproof—this (produced) is the book—I then took her to Paris in a carriage; on the way a conversation took place about her father and Madame Riel; it was not a consecutive conversation on one subject only, she talked about her father, and I interrupted at times, talking about the other affair—I asked her whether she had been in London—she said "Yes," and commenced crying—I said "Why are you crying, there is no cause for it?—she said "I know what you came to fetch me for"—I said "It is to take you to your father's that I come to fetch you"—she said "Do you promise me that you are going to take me to him I"—I said "Yes," and then it was that she told me the story about Madame Riel, upon questions which I put to her—she said that she had stayed in London and had quarrelled with her mistress—I said "What I you have killed her I you have assassinated her! you have murdered her!"—she replied "They say more about the matter than really is the fact; if you knew how it had happened you could not condemn me"—I then said "Tell me how it happened"—she said "I had a quarrel with my mistress in London, who was a very bad person, and it very often happened that we quarrelled; she always called me abusive words, and particularly so on that day"—I think she said that on Sunday Madame Riel came down stairs in the kitchen about 11 o'clock, asking her why the soup was not on the fire, to which she replied as the dinner was only to be ready by 7 o'clock there was plenty of time—then Madame Riel got angry, and was going to put the soup on the fire herself, and then she, the mistress, called her a dirty bitch, and that she, the prisoner, at that moment seized her by the throat, and held her very tight; that she cried out "Let me go" and she did so; that her mistress said "Now, you must leave my house at once;" to which the prisoner said "Very well, I will leave, provided you pay me what you owe me;" that Madame Riel replied "No, you shall remain your time, and leave afterwards, "saying "Where could you go to when you leave this house, you are going on the streets, like others;" and that the prisoner then replied "Perhaps you have walked the streets longer than I have," and high words again recommenced: it was to the same effect as before; that then the prisoner gave her a sudden, quick blow on the throat; that Madame Riel fell down on the ground from this, and that she looked at her and found she was dead; on seeing that she was dead she dragged her to a room adjoining; I think, from what she said, it was the coal-cellar, and then I don't know what happened, but she wanted to carry it up stairs; that she took a rope from the kitchen, which she placed round her waist, dragging her up to the staircase; that, having arrived there she could not get it up the stairs, because the body was doubling in two, and then she took off the cord from the waist and placed it round the neck, and that in this manner she pulled it up stairs, and put it into another room, which she shut—that was all that passed—she illustrated by my neck how she did it—she showed me to my own neck how she had given the blow—that was how she showed it, twice (describing it) a blow twice—I then took her to the Prefecture—before arriving there I searched her, and took from her three French newspapers, and a French bank-note of 25 francs—these (produced) are the newspapers, there are two Petite Presse, and one Petite Journal.

NATHANIEL DRUSCOVITCH . I am a chief inspector of the Metropolitan Police—on 10th April, I went with Inspector Pay, to Paris—and amongst other places I went to Madame Bouillion's—I was present there when four keys were found in a small box by Monsieur Massey, the Commissionary of Police, they are in the possession of Inspector Pay (produced)—I believe the prisoner was then in custody, but I did not know it—after we had finished the search at 2 o'clock in the morning, on Sunday 14th April, I went to the Prefecture, and there I found the prisoner—I asked her name—she said "Marguerite Dixblanc"—I had heard that there were some scratches on her hands, and I was examining them—on her right hand I saw three scratches;-while I was doing this, she said "Those occurred in the affair"—I had already informed her that she was charged with the murder of Madame Riel—I afterwards came over to England and went back again, and received the prisoner from the French police, at Calais—I brought her to Newgate—on the second day of the examination at Bow Street, while waiting for the Magistrate she commenced commenting upon the proceedings of the previous day—she said "Madame Riel has made a mistake about the keys, the key which she says belongs to the gate, actually belongs to the door leading to the kitchen; as to the other keys I threw them behind a beer barrel in the pantry"—I told Inspector Hambling to search, and they were found there.

Cross-examined by MR. POWELL. I have not got that bunch of keys—I was not the person who found them—I did not see them after they were found—during the time the prisoner was with me, she conducted, herself quite properly.

JOHN MILTON . I am postmaster at the Western district, Vere Street, Park Lane is in that district—" No. 7 "on the envelope denotes that the letter was cleared from some post-office receptacle in the Western district, at 4 a.m. on Monday morning, 8th April—it is London "W. 7." and the date follows—"Ap." stands for April, and there is a figure "8"—that stamp would be used either for a pillar post, or wherever it was cleared from—the next clearing hour before that was 9 p.m. on Saturday, the 6th—there is no clearing on Sunday—a letter posted after 9 o'clock on Saturday would not be cleared till 4 o'clock, the Monday morning after.

Cross-examined by MR. POWELL. In like manner if it was posted at any time on Sunday, it would be cleared at the same time—from anything there was on the letter, it might have been posted on Sunday afternoon, or at any time between 9 o'clock on Saturday and 4 o'clock on Monday morning.

JOHN WILLIAM BARTON . I am a cashier at Messrs. Cox & Company's bank—Lord Lucan keeps an account there—this (produced) is a cheque of his for 80l., it is dated 30th March, I filled it up, he signed it and I gave him the cash, sixteen 5l. Bank of England notes, 01066 to 01081 inclusive—these are a portion of them (produced)—I gave them to him personally.

THE EARL OF LUCAN . I keep an account at Cox & Company's—on 30th March I went there—the clerk filled up a cheque, I signed it and got in return for it sixteen 5l. Bank of England notes—on the same day I gave to Mdlle. Riel six of the 5l. notes to hand over to her mother—that is the last I heard of them.

Cross-examined by MR. POWELL. I have had occasion to see Madame Reil occasionally, and have had opportunities of observing her manner and demeanour towards other people, but not particularly—she was like a good many French ladies, a little vive, that is all; I do not know an English word to describe it better—she was hasty, perhaps you would say—I never was a witness to any outburst of her temper—I have had no opportunity of observing her demeanour towards her servants.

MR. ATTORNEY-GENERAL. Q. We were told yesterday that all French people were passionate; do you mean she was a person of ungovernable temper? A. I have had no opportunity of judging—I do not even mean that she was a person who used more gesticulation than our colder English people are in the habit of using—if she was an Englishwoman I should say she was hasty and vive—I should not go beyond that—I did not observe anything in her which in the society of French people would have been observable—I only speak as far as I have had an opportunity of judging.

MR. POWELL. Q. The opportunities you have had of judging have been when she was in the presence of her equals? A. Yes—I have had opportunities of seeing her both with her equals and with her servants.

ELIZA WATTS (re-examined). This dress belongs to the prisoner (The green one found in Paris)—she had it on on the Sunday evening when she went out—this brown dress also belongs to the prisoner, it is the one that was left when she went away.

Cross-examined. Q. The prisoner desires me to ask you whether you knew her, while she was in the situation, buy anything or spend anything upon herself, of your own knowledge? A. No; not a great deal.

COURT. Do you remember going from the public-house, and being kept at the door? A. Yes; after that the prisoner and I sat down to eat bread and cheese—we had no wine then—I had no wine with the prisoner at any part of the day—we partook of the beer together, which she brought from the public-house—I did not drink a glass of wine all that Sunday.

JULIE RIEL (re-examined). I have brought the jewel-case—this is it (produced)—I have only one key to it—I am sure there were two—I think the other is on my mamma's ring—this bunch of keys (Those found behind the barrel) on this ring belong to her; I cannot say without trying it, whether one key is a duplicate key of the jewel-case—yes, there is (Opening the case with one)—this porte-monnaie belonged to my mamma, and so did this ring—I said yesterday that my mamma used to wear some rings in a porte-monnaie—I made a mistake—I do not know, but the particular ring I think, was kept in a little box which was on a marble console, a marble corner table—this brown dress and this green dress belong to the prisoner—my mother was a person of hasty quick temper, but she was very good, and she never made use of abusive words.

Cross-examined by MR. POWELL. I saw that ring nearly every day, but I cannot give precisely the date when I last saw it before I went to Paris—there is no jewellery in the box now, it is still in my possession; those which were there before—I cannot say how many articles of jewellery there were; there were five bracelets, three or four pairs of ear-rings, but I cannot say, because some of them I had taken to Paris, when I went there; I took half the articles over there—my bracelets were valuable, but not of very large value.

Re-examined. The prisoner has no doubt seen those jewels when I was wearing them in the theatre, but she never saw them out of the theatre—I do not know whether she was aware where they were kept, unless she watched mamma when she went to the box.

DR. WILLIAM WADHAM . I am Fellow of a College, and Physician to St. Georges' Hospital—I live at 12, Park Lane—on 8th April, about 8 a.m., I was called to No. 13, Park Lane—I did not know Madame Riel at all—when I got there, I went into the pantry and found her body on the floor; her face and knees were on the ground and her legs so turned up, that you saw the heels and soles of her boots; her hands were placed under her body, a rope was placed round her neck, the knot of it was under her left jaw—the rest of the rope was twisted twice round the knob of the door of an iron safe, and the remainder was thrown over the deceased's body—it was just strained from the door to the neck, but not tight, no force; not enough to have resisted any effort to disentangle it, besides which the free end of the rope was loose—the room was perfectly undisturbed; there was no carpet in it, and not the slightest appearance of a struggle, as far as I could see—I waited, leaving things exactly as I found them till Butcher arrived, after which the body was removed by him into the next room, a parlour that is there—I first examined the body before it was removed, and took the rope off—I made no detailed examination, but merely to look for marks of injury on the body—when it was moved into the parlour, I examined it again; no change whatever could have happened between the first examination and the second—I made a few notes, it is scarcely necessary to look at them—I found the dress open in front, it buttoned in front, but no buttons were torn off; I looked to see—I found a reddish brown mark nearly all round the throat, with a reddish brown depression where the knot had been under the left jaw—there was a bruise over the right eye, and an abrasion under each eye—the eyes and mouth were firmly closed; I tried them—the right-hand was firmly closed, and the nail of the ring finger, the third finger, was broken back; there was no ring on that finger—a slight scratch under the right knee was the only other injury I observed—the third finger nail being bent back resulted, I suppose, from some struggle which she had made—I did not draw any conclusion from that—the dress was not torn, only open in front—I saw no other signs of tearing—the pocket was examined in my presence, and nothing found in it—a little blood was coming from the mouth, very slight—the body was quite stiff and cold—it is very difficult to say how long a body has been dead, but there was nothing incompatible with the notion that she had been dead twenty hours—the safe was examined in my presence, and something was found in it, but no money—this examination was on Monday, and I made a post-mortem examination on the Wednesday, and found a bruise on the left-cheek bone, which I had not observed on the Monday; I ought to say on the angle of the lower jaw on the left side—two front teeth of the upper jaw were rather loose—I also found some slight scratches on the nose, which I had not observed before, and in the neighbourhood of the mark of the cord there were some reddish scratches, which I had not observed—the mark on the lower jaw was higher than the place where the rope was on the Monday; the rope was below the jaw—the membranes of the brain were healthy, but gorged with blood—the brain was healthy, except that it was greatly congested—the lungs were gorged with blood, but perfectly healthy, except a little empyema at the tips—that is a little rupture of the air cells, nearly everybody has it—the valves of the heart were perfect, and the structure of the heart was perfectly healthy, but it was nearly empty of blood because the blood was so unusually fluid that it ran out when the heart was removed from the body—the liver and kidneys were both gorged with blood, but healthy—the lungs, liver, and all the important parts of the body were gorged with blood—I naturally examined the throat and wind pipe, and found two fractures of the hyoid bone, also a fracture of the hyoid cartilage, and one of the cracoid cartilage, just at the left of the medium line—I should also say that there was blood poured out under the mucous membrane of the right vocal cord—that is what we use in articulation—these different bones and cartilages which I have described, are parts of the structure of the throat through which the voice passes, and the blood—they showed that some very great violence must have been applied to the throat—it comes to this, that the architecture, the frame of the throat was broken; the fracture of the frame-work of the throat, and the blood which I saw gorging the different organs, made me consider that she had been killed either by strangulation or throttling, the effect of which would be to gorge all those organs—strangulation would cause that flow of blood to the internal organs—the destruction of the throat which I have described would be the result of throttling, and throttling would also produce the gorging of the various organs which I have described—the mark by the neck, and the injuries to the neck, might have been made during life or after death, but the blood poured out under the mucous membrane of the vocal chord, showed that some injury must have been done during life—it might not have been aggravated afterwards, it must have been before death—in the healthy patient, when strangulation takes place, it would so interfere with the system that congestion would ensue—I do not think congestion would increase after life had ceased—I think the pouring out of the blood under the vocal chord must have been done during life; I should think it was probably done by the violence which caused the breaking of the part—in my opinion a single blow on the jaw would not produce the injuries—it requires very great force and strength to produce the breaking of the framework of the neck which I saw—I have made experiments two or three times to see whether it could be done, and it requires very great force indeed—a rope might possibly have caused the two fractures of the hyoid bone, but not the others, for the mark of the rope was above those injuries—there was only one mark; such a mark could be made by a rope after death, but this was so very regular that I should hardly think it could be made by a rope dragging a body—still there was only one mark—looking at all the circumstances, my opinion is that she either died from being strangled or from being throttled; strangling with a rope or throttling with your hand—whether one or the other the gorging of the vessels would equally have taken place.

Cross-examined by MR. POWELL. It is consistent with my examination that the deceased might have been killed by grasping the throat, by throttling—cases have occurred where the throat has been grasped so suddenly and strongly that the windpipe was closed, and death followed almost immediately—I discovered on the Wednesday a fracture of the hyoid bone, and an injury to the cartilage of the throat—the fracture of the bone was not caused by the rope after death—my opinion is that the injury to the cartilage was caused during life, it might have been caused by a powerful grasp of the hand—I give it as my opinion that a blow could not have caused the injury to the cartilage—I have met with no case on record, and I think it would be an accident happening in prize fights, if possible, but it is matter of opinion—in the experiments I have made since I have fractured the bone—that was after the death of the subject—I succeeded in producing similar injuries to the cartilage, twelve or fourteen hours after death—I can give no opinion whether injuries to the bone and cartilage might be more easily produced during life than after death—I am not aware that injuries to the structure of the bone may be produced much more easily on the living than on the dead subject—I am aware that the German surgeons have experimented largely in that way, and Mr. Casper says that he has failed to break this thing—he was a very high authority—he is not living—his works are a very high authority—he says that he never could produce those injuries after death—it is very improbable that the injuries I discovered on this body might have been produced by a blow given under what for medical purposes might be called favourable circumstances—I have not made the experiment, and therefore I cannot say that it is impossible.

Re-examined. In the living subject there is power of resistance, but in the dead subject none whatever—in the experiments I made I chose my opportunity and carefully searched for the right place to put my fingers—I hardly think the hand could grasp all the parts at once, so that the various injuries could be the result of a single sudden act—in my opinion it is impossible for a blow to have produced all those injuries.

MR. POWELL having intimated that he did not intend to call witnesses, submitted that the Attorney-General was now bound in the ordinary course to sum up his evidence, and was notentitled to a general reply: Mr. Baron Martin had ruled in "Reg. v. Cox," 7 (Cox C.C. p. 506) with respect to the Attorney-General of the County Palatine, that he had no such right, but that it was confined to the Attorney-General of England in person, and that the practice was a bad one. Since that ruling the 28 Vict, c. 18 had been passed, which he contended expressly took away the right which before that the Attorney-General was supposed to possess, and placed him in the position of any ordinary Counsel conducting a Prosecution.

THE ATTORNEY-GENERAL was not aware that the right of reply had ever been seriously disputed; the opinion of Mr. Baron Martin had been set aside by the observations of the present Lord Chief Baron, in the case of "The Queen v. Waters," see "Central Criminal Court Sessions Paper," vol. 72, page 566, and by Mr. Justice Hannen, in the case of the Welsh Fasting Girl, and in 7 "Carrington and Payne," p. 676, and the Statute re/erred to stated "that the practice, except as hereby expressly altered, shall remain as at present" it was in fact an immemorial privilege which had never been interfered with.

MR. BARON CHANNELL . "It appears to me that the Attorney-General's right to reply is in the nature of a prerogative right; it is a right on the part of the Crown, exercised by the officer of the Crown, the Attorney-General, and I do not see that that prerogative right is taken away at all by this Act of Parliament; whenever the Attorney-General not only appears in person, but makes a statement that he appears really on behalf of the Crown, he has a right to reply, and that right is not affected by the question of whether or no the Defendant's Counsel calls witnesses; he has the right if he chooses to exercise it.

EUGENE DUMAS , a French provision merchant, of Princes Street, Leicester Square, and ISABELLA EVANS, of the Bazaar Coffee-house, King Street, Baker Street, gave the prisoner a good character.

GUILTYStrongly recommended to mercy by the. Jury, considering that the case, so far as regards premeditation, had not been made out.

Prisoner. I never had the intention of causing the death.


NEW COURT—Wednesday, June 12th, 1872.

Before Mr. Justice Blackburn.



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