Cab Driver Convicted of Overcharging a Barrister, 1895

From the Waterford Standard, 13 July 1895:

“On Thursday last, at the City Police Court, a man named James Casey, a car-driver in the city, summoned by the Corporation for charging in excess of what was authorised by the Council.

Mr E Feely BL, who was the witness in the case, said that on the previous Monday evening he came from Dublin, and arrived by the five past seven train, he was going to Tramore, and engaged the defendant to drive him over to the station; he had a bag of books, a portmanteau, a couple of overcoats and a black bag; they were all fairly heavy, he paid for them, and when he got to the Tramore station he was surprised to hear the defendant asking for 2s, as the train was about to start he would not delay, and he had to pay the defendant when he asked, but told him he would see about it.

The Defendant said he had to drive very quick.

Witness: You had not to go quick at all. You thrashed the horse, and I had to speak to you about it.

Chief Constable Grant having said that 6d was the proper fare, the defendant was fined 5s, and for having no licence, which also constituted a second charge against him, he was mulcted in the same amount.”

Nowadays Mr Feely’s contemporary would laugh at the idea of litigating the difference between 6d and 2s, and would probably have driven from Dublin to to Tramore the morning of the case rather than the evening before. They would probably have brought much the same amount of gear, with one exception – heating in rural Ireland, though not, alas, the weather, has improved to the extent that one overcoat usually suffices when travelling on Circuit in July!

Author: Ruth Cannon BL

Irish barrister sharing the history of the Four Courts, Dublin, Ireland, and other Irish courts.

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