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Pillaging of Ships' Cargoes - Report of Royal Commission


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1920-:n.

THE P ARLLUtEriT O :F THE OF AUSTRALIA.

PILLAGING OF SHIPS' CARGO ES.

REP()llT OF ROYAL COMThiiiSSION.

Pt·esented by Command; ordered to be printed, 12 th J uly, 1921.

[Co• t of fJaper .·-·l' reparation not 000 copies; approxil!tate cost of printing and publishing, £40 .]

.l:'nnted and Publis h e d f Ol' the of the COMMONWE:ALTH o f AUSTR ALIA by ALB ER T J · J.\IIULLETT,

Government Printer fo •· the State of Vtctona.

No. 127.- F.l0733 .-P&rcE I s. 6n.

795

.,

To His Excellency T HE RIGHT HoNORABLE I-IENRY W ILLIAM , BARON FoRSTER, a Member of llis MaJ·esty's JYlost Honorable PTivy Council, J{n,ight Grand Cross of the J.Vlost .Distinguished Order of Saint M ichael and Sai1it' George, Governor­ General and Commander-in-Chief in and over the Oora,monwealth of Australia.

J\[AY IT P LEASE YouR E XCELLENCY-In compliance with Your Excellency's connnands contained in Letters Patent, dated the 12th day of February, 1921 , requiring your Commissioner to inquire into and report upon the question of the pillaging of ships' cargoes, and, in particular, t o consider and reporf:-

1. Vvhether pillaging is carried on to any serious extent in regard to-( a) Cargoes_ from oversea ; (b) Inter-State cargoes. 2. Whether pillaging takes place-

(a) .Prior to shipn1ent in the country of export ; (b) During the voyage to the port of destination; (c) In the holds during the discharge of the cargo from the vessels when in Australian ports ; (d) While the goods are on the wharf or in t he wharf sheds; (e) Subsequer;tt t o delivery from t he \vharf. 3. "\Vhether any indication can be ·given as to the percentage of pillaging under the

various paragraphs of t he last preceding clause. 4. \Vhether persons 'convicted, of offences involving dishonesty are employed on the wharves, and, if so, under what authority, by whmn, and to what extent. 5. Whether there is any proof of conspiracy between Customs officers · and others to

enable pillaging to be successfully carried out. ·

6. \Vhether there is evidence that concerted action is taken to assist convicted offenders by pooling pecuniary penalties. 7. Whether there is evidence that pillaged goods are disposed of through receivers or " fe nces ''. s.· What special measures, if any, are necessary t o prevent pillaging in the future. Your Con1missioner has the honour to report as follows, namely :- _ The words "pillage," " pillages," "pillaged " are used throughout the Report in the tern1s implied by section 163 of the Commonwealth Custmns Act 1901-1910, which sets out-

163.- (1) \Vhenever goods (a) Having received damage or have been p illag ed during the voyage ; or (6) Have whilst under Customs control been damaged pillaged lo3t or dest royed ; &c., &c .

The words "stealing, " "stolen;'' " thief," and "thieving" will be n1ore fre quently used as having a similar meaning. Evidence has been given before your Commissioner at all the principal ports of Australia, narnely, Melbourne, Hobart, Launceston, Adelaide, Perth, Fre1n antle, Sydney, and Brisbane in

the order named. In each Stat e visit ed, and prior t o t he taking_ of evidence, fn:ll publicity was given in the Press by adNertisement and newspaper' paragraphs as to "'vhen and where the sittings wo uld be held ; and inti1nations were sent to the Chamber of Conunerce, Overseas Shipping Representatives

Association, the Australian Steamship Owners Federation, t he Marine ·underwriters Association, and the Secretary of the Trades Hall. The sittings of the Commission were open to the public, and of t he Press

were present at each sitting and fully reported the proceedings. .

Th1ee hundred and fiity witnesses were examined, the g'.Leater number of whom were directly connected with the shipping industry. -

4

It was proposed to take evidence at Town sville, one of the nort hern ports in the State of Queensland, but, owing t o t he d ifficulties t here in connexion 'Nith obtaining offic ial accommodation and the necessity for taking one or mor e shorthand writ ers t o record the evidence as well as the extra time it would involve, t he visit -vvas abandoned, more especially as ample evidence had been obtained at the other p orts in A1:1-stralia as to t he extent to which pillage has taken place.

At each of the ports visited, personal inspection was made of every -vv_harf and she'd where cargo liable to pillage was received , and notes were taken of all 1n atters t hat came under observation in connexion with any suggestions for alterations or improvements t hat appeared to be necessary. - ·

It is proposed to answer the questions set out in the Cmnmission, first with regard to each of the p,orts visited, and then to give a sum1nary of t he whole of these with necessary com.ments.

MELBOURNE &

1. Whether Pillaging is carried on to any serious extent in regard to-­

( a) Cargoes from oversea ; (b) Inter-State cargoes .

Pillaging is carried on to a serious extent in regard to (a ) cargoes fron1 oversea, and to a considerably less extent in regard to (b) Inter-State cargoes. Tonnage of cargo received at l\1:elb ourne during the year e:p_ded 31st December, 1920- ' ·

Overseas I nter-St ate

The shipping and the insurance cornpanies, and the Railway aut horities (in connexion wit h cargo r eceived at Spencer-street station from Port J\![elbourne Pier ) during t he year ended 31st December, 1920, paid claims

arrwunting t o A dd t o these figures 10 per cent. the difference between claims paid and claims made

Oversep,s.

£86,710

8, 671

£95,381 - - --

The value of cargo pillaged so far as the charge Melbourne

is concerned amount ed in round figures t o Overseas Inter-State

lVIaking a total for t he twelve n1onths ended 31st Decmnber , 1920, of

2. Whether Pillaging takes

(a) Prrior to ship1nent in the country of export.

Tons.

1,127,779 1,424,605

Inter-Stat e. £5,919

591

£6,510

£95,000 6,500

£101,500

Conclusive evidence bas been furnished a Js t o the stealing of cargo taking place prior to shipn1ent in the country of export , by t he arrival of cases in a sound and apparently l1ntan1pered with condition and b_y the discovery of rubbish in the place of goods in the cases when opened, also by t he substitution of cases similar in also containing

only rubbish. The following are a few instances out of 1nany similar mwes . where it is improbable that pillage took place elsewhere than prior to ship1nent, narnely :-In February, 1920, t hree cases invoiced as containing wood drills, ex s.s. City of Madras, from New :{ork were fo und t o contain sash weights and bags.

In .June or ,J uly , 1920, thr ee cases invoiced as containing Cleveland t -w-ist drills, ex s.s. City of Jl;fadras, from :r ew York, were found to contain sorap iron, straw, and a New York newsp aper dated between the date the goods left t he ·w-are ... ouse and the dqte of shipment. The consignees stated tha-t the cases were not original cases, as t he ·wood and binding differed from t he cases by t he exp orter, and that t he ones r eceived must have been substituted and t he · :p1arks "rriit:;tted. It _ W'as also stat ed t hat the cases rn ust have been weighed, as weights ·v ere marked

thereon which tallied with the wejghts sh(')wn in the

5 .

About October, 1920, a case invoiced as containing motor acces ories, ex s.s. Caroline, from England, was found to be filled with paper. On the 1st Decem.ber, 192?, a case invoiced as containing 100 dozen pairs of lad1es' hose, ex s.s. of fron1 New York, was found to contain only rubbish,

empty boxes, old clothes; and sacks branded " New York. " The case appeared to be light in weight. · .

On the 2nd December, 1920, a case invoiced as containing ho iery, ex s.s. Port Stephens, _ fr01n New York, was found to be filled with stable manure and old clothes. In December last, three cases invoiced as containing silk gloves, ex s.s. S01nerset, from New York were found to contain leather clippings, bricks, wood, old American

railroad waybills, and old American ·magazines and newspapers. Also, in December last, one case invoiced as containing cotton voile, ex s.s. City oj Edinburgh, from New York, was found to contain straw packing and stones. (b) During the voyage to the Port" of Destination.

This has been proved by The conviction of members of a crew ; Some members of a crew being found in a hold; and also in alocker where liquor was stored; ·

The locks on holds being found broken during voyage ; The discovery of stolen cargo in the crew's quarters ; Goods being found in hold on arrival at port, and cases pillaged; ,

Cases in hold being fgund broken, and goods found secreted in bunkers, an openin§ having been forced through bulkhead. .

(c) In the Holds during the Discharge o; the Ca-rgo from the Vessels when in Australian Ports Definite evidence has been given as to the discovery of :- -vVharf labourers being found with stolen cargo in their possession, who , in many cases, were subsequently convicted ; Stolen cargo secreted in and about the holds ; B.roken cases of stout and. empty bottles being found lying about the hold, and

Etevedores being found in a partly intoxicated condition.

(d) While the Goods are on the Wha1j or in the Wha -rf Skeels. This is shown to have taken place by:-The disappearance of cases, &c., from a wharf or shed; The disappearance of a case from the cage in a shed; Goods having been stolen from cases placed on a wharf or in a shed; being found with goods .in their possession stolen from cases on a wharf or in a

shed. ·

(e) Subseq1.ternt to ·Delivery Jrom the Wharf. This also has taken place, having been adduced showing that:-Carriers have been convicted of stealing goods in their charge, and warehouse have been convicted of stealing after the arrival of t he goods at the warehouse.

Cases containing which have been checked prior to delivery from a wharf havE been subsequently pillaged before inspection on arrival at warehouse.

3. Whether any indication can be given as to the Percentage of Pillaging under the various paragraphs of the last preceding Clause. No accurate indication can be given.

4. Whether Persons convicted of Offences involving Dishonesty are employed on the Wharves ; and, if so, under what Authority, by whom, and to what extent. There is ample evidence that such persons are employed on the wharves. Indirectly, they are en1ployed under t he authority of the unions t o which they belong. At the Port

of Melbourne there is no preference to unionists. ; St ill, if non-union labourers were engaged while there were union labourers available, there would at once be trouble. If there is plenty of union labour available, there is no necessity to engage a labourer known to have been convicted of dishonesty, but if there is a shortage of union labo_ ur, those known to

have been convicted of dishonesty must be engaged. Carters have to be licensed by the Customs authorities for carting goods under the control of the Customs, and all carters have to be licensed by the ·Town Hall authorities, and coopers have to be licensed by the Harbor T.rust, so there is a proper check so far as

they are conoerned.

..

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As t o what extent are employed, it is difficult to ascertain . One

witness stated- · ;:'

" I should say that waterside workers are from 20 to 30 per cent . criminals. " This statement cannot be accepted as definit e, it is too general ; and t he witness was not cross-examined as t o his statement. Another > vitness stat ed t hat persons convict ed of . offences involving dishonest y have to be, and are, employed on t he wharves. •

5. Whether there is any Proof of Conspiracy between Customs Officers and others to enable Pillaging to be successfully carrted out. ·

There 1s no evidence of t his .

6. Whether there is Evidence that action is taken to assist Convi cted Oftenders by Pooling pecuniary Penalties. There is some evidence that concerted action is taken to assist offenders by p ooling pecuniary penalties by raising t he amount of penalty from fe llow-workers and local t radespeople by-

Tarpaulin musters ; P ayment of fine by fellow-workers ; Collections from lor.;al tradespeople ; A lemonade bot t le being used as a collect ing recept acle.

7. Whether' there is 'Evidence th at Pillaged· Goods are disposed of through Receivers or " 1<\mces." A number of witnesses have g'iven .evidence, not of a very definite nature, t hat goods are so disposed of .. .

have been difficult ies in obtaining couvictions owing to t he inability to fumish

proof of t he ownership of the stolen goods. There is little doubt but t hat pillaged' goods are so disposed of.

8. What special l'fleasures, if any, are nectJssary to prevent Pillaging in the future. :Y.Iany suggestions; which are embodied in the general suggestions, have been made by witnesses for t he better prevention of pillaging generally and at the port of Melbourne. The following recommendations are made so far as t he port of Melbo u·ne is

concerned :-A mendrnent, &c., of the Law of the State of Victoria.- 'Ihe attention of t he Government of t he State of Victoria might be invited to the desirability of making shipping documents, &c. , prima facie evidence that t he ownership of the propert y mentioned therein is in the consignee or his assignee, as provided for in the laws of

New South Wales and Tasmania ; making the receiving of st olen property, well knowing it to have been st olen, an offence in the State, no mat t ei' where t he pr operty has been stolen, as provided by t he E nglish Larceny Act 191 6, and the Criminal Codes of Queensland and Western Australia ; increasing t he penalty for ·being found in possession of goods reasonably suspected t o have been stolen, and making it an indictable offence when value of the goods fo und exceeds, say, £50.

Carriers and Carters.- ·Carriers should not be granted a cooper 's permit. Carters and unaut horized persons shou ld "be prohibited from having marking pots or brushes in t heir possession. Cart el's should not be sent to receive cargo between the hours of 12 noon and 1 p.m . Carters should not be allowed t o leave the wharves without their loads being inspected .

Coastal Ves-sels or Lighten.-Coastal vessels should not be berthed alongside· overseas vessels except when necessary. Closing in of S heds.- All sheds where inward or outward cargo is received should be closed in and provided with sliding doors or roller shutters.

Closing -of Sheds.-Sheds should be closed at meal times while ships are loading or discharging cargo . . Wo ·kers should not be permitted to have t heir meals or be in sheds during meal hours. Shelter sheds should be provided for the workers during meal hours.

Doors of sheds should be d osed at all times when t he sheds are not in use. Coopers .- All coopers employed repairing packages on the wharves or sheds should be registered. It seems desirable t hat they should be placed under t he control of the Cust oms, so that t hey could report t o the Customs officials any irregularity t hat might come under t heir notice.

The.re should be more supervision of coopers. Each cooper should confine his attention to t he shed in which he is employed . Cowper-street.- Should be placed under t he control of the Harbor Trust and should, if practicable, be closed t o traffic daily when wharf traffic is finished.

Dudley-street Gates.-Two Customs officers at a time, instead of one, should be employed to properly supervise the passing in and out of vehicles. Fencing of Wharves .- All wharves when practicable should be enclosed with substantial fences.

Fencing from No. 6 Docie to No. 17 Shed.--It is highly desirable that the overseas wharves should be isolated from the Inter-State wharves,. as probably what might be called the wholesale pillaging takes place owing to the easy manner in which overseas goods may be transhipped to Inter-State ships. For this purpose it seems necessary

that a fence should be erected along Mountain-street fr om No . 17 shed to No. 6 Dock 'with gates at the intersections of Mountain-street with Cowper-;;treet, and with North Wharf-road respectively, i.e., provided it be decidPd that Wharves 18 t o 20A are to be kept for the berthing of overseas ships. Should, however, it be found necessary to

allocate these wharves to Inter-State ships, the fence should also be carried along North Wharf-road to the end of Wharf 20A, which would have the effect of completely isolating the Vic.toria Dock wharves from the River wharves. 'rhis would also have the desired effect of separating the Metropolitan Gasworks,

the Vacuum Oil \Vorks, and the Freezing \Vo:tks from the oveTsea,s wharves, and the present gates running from No. 12 Wharf to could be dispensed with. Gates.-Stricter supervision at the gates and roads is necessary, and exits from all wharves should be well guarded. It has been stated that the officers at the

gates do not at prese nt thoroughly check the marks and the numbers of the goods. Inter-State Vessels and Sheds containing Overseas Oargo.-No Inter-State vessel whilst loading should be berthed at a wharf with a shed containing overseas cargo. Lighting.-It is essential that the efficient lighting of the inside and ou-tside of

sheds at night should be properly carried out. Water Police.-There should be a sufficient number of efficient water police to patrol the waters of the river and docks daily £rom sunset to sunrise, as evidence generally points to the fact that more thieving is done on the waterside than on the

land side. Port Melbottrne Pier.-The riort;hern end of the wharf should be closed with gates and a watchman placed in charge. Persons leaving Port Melbourne Pier should pass through a small gate near the watchman.

The northern end of the pier should be fenced along the eastern and western sides to deep water (say, 5 feet low water). .

There should be extra supervision of the trucks whilst standing loaded on the pier, Loiterers should not be allowed on the pier about the trucks 1-vhen loading. Water police should patrol the waters while vessels are loading or unloading.

HOBART.

1. Whether Pillaging is carried on to any serious extent in regard to­ (a) Cargoes from overseas; (b) Inter-State cargoes . Yes , in both instances in comparison to the small amount of the tonnage of cargo received, compared to the larger portt>.

Tonnage of cargo received at Hobart during the year ended 31st December, 1920 :-Overseas Inter-State The shipping and insurance companies for the year ended

31st December, 1920, have paid claims on pillaged cargo amatmting to . . . . . . . .

Add to these figures 10 per cent . as the difference between claims made and claims paid

The value of cargo pillaged so far as the charge against Hobart is concerned amounted in round :figures to­ Overseas Inter-State

Making a total for the year ended 31st December, 1920, of

Tons. 12,928 139,780

Overseas. Inter-State. £2,261 £1 ;224

226 £122

£2,487 £1,346

£2,490 J,300

£3,790

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2. Whether Pillaging takes place-(a) P rior to shipment irt the country of e;xpm·t. Yes, severaJ instarices were given in evidence where it is highly probable that the stealing took place prior to shipment in the country of export, but t he cases are not clear to give coll')rete instances.

(b) bttring the voyage td the port of destination. There were many instances of this nature given in evi.dence but none of t hem ·were sufficiently definite to be accepted a.s they may equally have occurred during the discharge of the cargo froin the vessels when in Australian ports.

(c) In the holds du1'ing the discha1·ge of the ca1';_:o from the vessels when in A ustralicm ports. There is only one' definite case of this having occurred. In May, 1916, some of the crew of the s. s. Athenic were found stealing beer in t}w hold when she was in Hobart. There is no doubt, however, that it has taken place.

(d) While the goods are in the wharf or in the wharf sheds. A good deal of this has taken place, namely, a man was caught stealing shawls out of a case a few mont hs ago. In February last some 28-lb. tins of whitelead were discharged from s. s. Th e next morning two 28-lb. tins were missing from the wharf.

A case of drugs landed from s.s. Ulimat·oa disappeared, and some of the contents were subsequently offered for sale to a chemist in Hobart. Froll). the s.s. Port N icholson, at the latter end of the year, a ba}e of serge was landed ordet a:nd condition. Next morning it was found cut open, and part of the contents

m1ssmg. From the s.s. P ort Darwin in June last some packages were noted as short landed by the tally clerks. The police arrested one of t he t ally clerks in Sydney with some material from the packages. The tally clerk was convicted of larceny.

A case was discharged fr om the s.s. Palma, but wl1en t he carter went to get it , it had disappeared. By the a case consigned to a doctor, containing surgical instruments,

was stolen from the wharf. A case containing motor cycle pumps, landed frofn s.s. P ort Nicholson in a damaged con dition, was further pillaged while negotiatians were proceeding with the Customs respecting the claim.

(e ) Subseq'uent to delivm·y from the wharf. Evidence o{ two cases of t his nature was given. About four years ago a load of sugar containing twenty sacks equal to a ton and a quarter was signed for and taken from the wharf by a carter, who disposed of it to a brewery instead of taking it to the owner.

By the s.s. Indat·1'a , in October, 1920, a quantity of steel rubberized soles arriYed and were stolen. The caTter pleaded guilty and received a sentence .

3. Whether any indication can be given as to the Percentage of Pillaging under the various paragraphs of the last preceding Clause.

No accurate indication can be given.

4. Whether Persons convicted of involving Dishonesty are employed on the Wharves ; and, if so, under what Authority, by whom, and to what extent.

Evidence bas been given that two persons who are me'tnbers of t he Waterside Workers Federation, and who have been convicted of offences involving dishonesty, are still employed on the wh arves. Another person who was similarly convicted is engaged as a carrier at the wharves, but be owns his own turn-out and is not a member of the Federated Carters' and Drivers' Union .

5. Whether there is any Proof of Conspiracy between Customs Officers and others to enable Pillaging to be successfully carried out. .

There is no evidence of t his nature.

, a. tla

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6. Whether there is Eviden ce that concerted Action is taken to assist Convicted Offe:H.tlers by Pooling P ecuniary Penalties. ' · .

Evidel\Ce of an unimportant'nature was given as to any concerted action being taken to assist convwted persons by poohng pecuniary p nalties. It is pro.bable, however, that if occasion arises it takes place .

7. Whether there is Evidence that Pillaged Goods are disposed of through Receivers or " Fences." There is very little evidence on this question, but there is no doubt t hat pillaged · goods have beeu disposed of through t he medium of or " fen ces ."

8. 'Nhat special Measures, if any, are n ecessary tc.prevent Pillaging in the future. lVIany suggestions were made by the it.nesses for the prevention of pillage in t he future, which are embodied in the general suggestions. 'l'he foll owi11g recummendations are made with regard to the Port of Hobart :-

Amendment, &c., of the Law of the State of Tasmanict.-The attention of the Govemment of 'I' smania might be invited to the desirability of making it an offence in the State to receive stolen goods, well knowing them to be stolen, no matter where t hey have been stolen, as provided by the Engli sh L cvrceny Act 1916, and by the

Criminal Codes .of Queensland and Western Australia, increasing the penalties for being found in possession of goods reasonably suspected to have been stolen, al).d making it an indictable offence when t he value of the goods found exceeds, say, £50 . Cages.- A commodious and secure cage about 20 feet x 20 feet, with double

locks, should be provided in each of the sheds in which all cases containing liquor, ' 'aluable goods, and broken packages should be placed immediately on being landed from the ships' slings. Oarten.--All carters employed in connexion with the wl1arves should be licensed

y the Customs or other authority. Fencing of} P ien and WhaTves.-Ocean Piers Nos. 1 and 2, wharves and sheds King's Pier, Queen's Piet, and Prince's Wharf should be securely fenced off and have gates of entrance, where checks of cargo leaving the piers or vvharves should be made, and where all persons employed on the piers or wbarves could be inspected on passing through.. .

WateT P olice .- There should be an efficient Water Police force at who should patrol the water when ships are loading or discharging at night time.

LAUNCEST ON.

1. Whether Pillaging is carried on to any serious extent in regard to­ (a) Cargoes frorrn overse_ as; (b) cctrqaes .

Yes, to a certain extent in both instances. .

All overseas goods received at Launceston during the year ended 31 st December , were landed at, and received by rail from, Hobart, and t he amount of pillage of

overseas cargo has, ex-cept to a very small amount, been charged against the latter port. Tons.

Tonnage of Inter-State cargo received at Launceston hy sea 88,335 Th.e shipping and insurance companies during the year eEded J nter-State. 31 st December, 1920, have paid claims on pillaged . <;argo amounting to . . . . . . . . . · £721

Add to these figures 10 per cent . as the difference hel-ween claims made and claims paid 72

The value of cargo pillaged so far as the charge against Launceston is concerned for the year ended 31st December, 1920, is £790

2. Whether Pillaging takes place--( a) Prior to shipment in the country of export. Yes, but with the exception of one instance, where a man IYas arrested at Melbourne for from the wharf a case of sardines a,\,aitin g shipm nt to Launceston, the evidence is only of a general character.

(b) D1.tring the voya_qe to the po'rt of destination. Onlv one definite instance has been given, namely, where two seamen were sentenced for having. cargo in their pos ession which had been tolen from t heir ship. (c) I n the holds during the discharge of the cargo from the vessel when_ in A ustralia.n ports .

o evidence has been given as to t his so fa r as Launceston 1s co ncerned.

10

(d) Whilst the goods ctre on the wharf m· in the wharf sheds. · There is evidence o£ this by-Cargo being stolen from the railway shed during the mght; A bag of tin ore being stolen from a wharf after having been tallied thereon; Thirteen bars of iron being stolen from a wharf after having been tallied thereon; The conviction of persons for stealing from wharves; Piping, &c., being stolen from a wharf after being landed thereon; Boys breaking into a sh ed and stealing cargo stored therein ; A carter being seen to wrongfully remove goods. (e) Subsequent to delivery from the wharf.

No conclusive evidence has been given as to this having taken place. 3. Whether any indication can be given as to the Percentage of Pillaging under the various paragraphs of · the last preceding Clause. No accurate indication can be given. 4 Whether Persons convicted of Offences involving Dishonesty are Employed on the Wharves,

and, if so, under what Authority, by whom, and to what extent Evidence has been given that no such persons are employed at the present time. 5. \Vhether there is any Proof of Conspiracy between Customs Officers and others to enable Pillaging to be successfully carried out.

There is no evidence of this. 6. Whether there is Evidence that Concerted Action is taken to Assist Convicted Persons by Pooling Pecuniary Penalties. No evidence was obtained that any such practice existed. 7. Whether there is Evidence that Pillaged Goods are disposed of through Receivers or "Fences."

No evidence whatever was obtained that pillaged goods are disposed of through these channels. 8. What Special Measures, if any, are necessary to Prevent Pillaging in the future. Many suggestions were made which are embodied in the general suggestions.

followi ng recommendations are made with regard to t he P ort of Launceston :­

Cages.-A commodious cage, about 20 feet x 20 fee t , with double locks, should be provided at Beauty Point, the King's Wharf, and the Queen's Wharf for t he security of valuable and broken packages. Fencing of Wharves.- If practicable, the King's and Queen's wharves should be fenced off.

H olyman' s Whctrj.- The enclosed shed is not large enough, the whole shed should be enclosed so that all cargo can be properly safeguarded. Railway Goods Shed.--Though closed to the public at night, it is open to shunters and other railway officials all night. It should be under Customs control always, and should not be available to any one at night time except the proper officers.

ADELAIDE.

1. Whether Pillaging is carried on to any serious extent in regard to­ ( a) Cargoes ;rom Overseas ; (b) Inter-State Cargoes. Yes, in both instances, but not t o so great an extent in connexion with Inter-State cargoes.

· Tonnage of cargo received at Port Adelaide and Outer Harbor for the year ended 31 st December, 1920-0verseas Inter-State

The insurance and shipping companies during the year ended 31st December, 1920, paid claims amounting to Add to these figures 10 per cent. as the difference between claims paid and claims made

The value of cargo pillaged, so far as the charge against Adelaide is concerned, amounted, in round figures, to-Oversea Inter-State

Oversea,s.

£14,310

£1,431

£15,741

Making a total for the year ended 31st December, 1920, of

Tons.

278,883 519.,455 Inter-State.

£3,391

£339

£3,730

£15,700 3,700

£19,200

805-

2. Whether Pillaging takes place-(a) Prior to Shipment in the Oount1·y oj E xport. Of the many instances of this nature given in evidence, the following, where the cases (except in two instances) were intact on arrival, are selected as definite, namely :--

S.s. Sha1-riston, from San Francisco, arrived 2nd June, 1920. The Goodyear Tyre Company sent a shipment of cases containing motor goods from their factory to San Francisco, where one case was found to be empty, the goods having been stolen. The consignees at Adelaide were warned. The case was stopped at Port Adelaide, and was found t o be empty, goods to the valne of £115 having been

abstracted. S.s. Kumara, from New York, arrived in J une 1920. Three cases i11voiced to contain plated ware, valued at £633, bore some chisel marks at the ends of the cases. The goods had been stolen. The cases were fill ed wit h bricks, concrete, and stones,

which, on geological examination, were declared to be products of America. S.s. Bo1·de1·er , fro m New York, arrived on 24th Sept ember, 1 920 . Three cases invoiced to contain motor tires and motor tubes, value £45 0. When opened the cases were found to contain horse manure, horse bedding, iron rollers, butcher's shop

:fittings, and stones. The goods had been stolen. .

S.s. P 01·t Albany, from New York, arrived on 20th November, 1920. A case invoiced to contain carpenters' edged tools, valued £35 . The goods were stolen, and in place thereof there were pieces of- brick S.s. City of Edinbutgh, from New York, arrived 29th November, 1920. A case invoiced

t o contain 50 pieces of sateen. When opened it was found that 28 pieces, valued £280, had been stolen, and straw, not the product of Australia, put in the case.

(b) During the voyage to the port OJ The following, out of many, may be accept ed as definite instances, namely:-S.s. City of 1.:/ .. aclras arrived at Port Adelaide, 4th August, 1920. Some members of the crew were convicted at the Police Court for having goods in their possession

stolen from the cargo. About 11th December, 1920, three apprentices of s.s. Illlasula, on ·their own admission, were convicted at t he.Court for having goods in their possession stolen fro m pillaged cases in the cargo. ·

On the s.s. W estmeath, which arrived at Adelaide from Liverpool on 16th March, 1921, goods were found in the crew's and firemen's quart ers; so me of the crew

had been seen going down the hold. On the arrival of the s.s. P O'rt Denison at Port Adelaide from New York on 16th February, 1921, it was reported that members of t he crew were trying to dispose of stolen goods ashore; consequ a search made, and goods forming

portion of the cargo were found in bunkers and in the stokehold amongst t he coal ; some being tied up in firemen's sweat rags. The chief officer stat ed that it had been discovered that an opening had been forced through a wooden bulkhead to the hold. ·

One of the engineers of a ship admitted the theft of eight dozen cotton vests, and was convict ed. The theft took place on the voyage. A fireman was convicted of the . theft of voile, which took place on t he voyage.

(c) In the holds during the dischaTge OJ the cargo ; rom the vessels when in Attstralian ports.

The following may be accepted as definite instances, A waterside worker was convicted of having a pair of slippers, part of the cargo, in his possession in the hold of a ship. While the s.s. Po1·t Nicholson, from New York, was discharging cargo in February of

this year, the hatches were put on at rlight. In the morning it was found that the hatchway had been disturbed, and that wholesale thieving had taken place. It was discovered that cabs had left the ship during the night. The ship was ransacked and some of the goods were fo und amongst the :firemen. It was

believed that some one had been concealed in the hold of the ship. In the s.s. Australian, from Melbourne to Sout h Africa, amongst t he cargo from Melbourne were boots for South Africa in a sp ecial locked compartment in one of the holds. It was found that the lock of the special compartment had been

broken, and a number of pairs of boots stolen. A man employed as hatchman was convicted of having some of the goo ds unlawfully in his possession. He is still employed at his usual work. Stolen cargo being found in possession of wharf labourers who were convicted.

12

A case contammg smoking pipes, ex s.s . P almct, was pillaged, and a stevedore was found drunk with some of the pipes in his possession. (d) While the qoods are on the wha1j or in the wharf sheds. There are instances of this, namely :-

Oh 17t h March, 1917, a check clerk and a fo reman stevedore were convicted of being in possession of two rolls of cloth which had been discharged from a vessel into the shed. On examination of a case containing boxes of tobacco, it was found that one box had

been stolen. The case v.ras nailed up and placed in the shed. Two days later the case was re-examined before being placed in bond, when it was discovered that another box was missing. Cases in good condition being placed in the shed and afterwards being found broken

and the goods stolen. Bales of cornsacks were broken open and the contents taken away in cabs. Two men were convicted. Cases of stout were landed in a broken condition, placed in the shed , and nailed up.

Later the cases were found broken again with empty bottles scattered in different parts of the shed. In April, 1920, 191 cases of sardines were held by the Customs pending analysis. These remained on the wharf for two months. Four cases, each containing 100 tins,

were stolen. In July, 1920, a similar instance occurred. One case containing 100 tins was stolen. A bale of serge worth £100 was landed at 01ter Harbor on 11th February, 1918, and -vvas stolen. In August, 1920, a case of tweeds, value £368, was landed from s.s . S1trrey. The next

morning it was found to have been stolen. (e) Suhsequent to delivery f rom the wharf. There is evidence- that t his has taken place, but only t o a small extent. Many of the witnesses connected with warehouses speak in high terms of the integrity of the carters.

The instances. in question are as follows :- ·

In 1915 four dozen rugs were abstracted ft·om a bale between Out er Harbor and t he warehouse . ·

A package had been tampered with on the wharf, but the contents were found to be intact. On arrival at t he warehouse, however, four pairs of curtains were found to have been stolen.

3·. Whether any indication can be given as to the Percentage tif Pillaging under the various paragraphs of the last preceding Clause. No accurate indication can be given.

4. Are Persons convicted of Offences involving Dishonesty employed oil the Wharves ; if so, by whose Authority, and to w_hat extent. Yes, but not to a great extent. Preference to unionists obtain at Adelaide so fa r as t he Waterside Workers' Federation is concerned, and that Union is primarily responsible fo r the employment of the men, and takes no action against convicted persons being employed on the wharves.

One witness stated that "they come out of gaol and go back to work. " , Another witnes stated, " I should say t hey all get back on the 'wharves . Very often in rush periods you are forced sooner or later to take these men or do without t hem, which you cannot do." .

Another witness stated that, " I have a record of a man who was expelled from the service of a private employer, owing to convictions for thieving in the sheds, and he was subsequently admitted as a member of the Working Men's Association." A check clerk and a foreman stevedore were convicted of stealing cargo . They are still following their occupation on t he wharf.

Two men were convicted of stealing cargo from a vessel ; t hey are still employed on the wharves . Detective Herbert Trotter sta"ed that not a great number of men employed on t he wharves have been convicted of dishonesty; but I think most of them are still bei.."l g

employed on the wharves. A wharf labourer, who was coflvicted of from a mail boat, was employed on the next mail boat that arrived. Two check clerks and a stevedore, who are convicted t hieves, are now employed.

Their employers in each case are aware of t he fa ct.

·so7

13

5. Whether. there is any Proof of Conspiracy between Customs Offi cers and others to enable Pillaging to be successfully carrie d out. There is no evidence of t his .

6. Whether there is Evidence that concerted Action taken to assist Convicted Offenders by Pooling Pecuniary Penalties. There is some direct, but mostly hearsay, evidence up on this. There can be little doubt but that it takes place when the occa ion arises .

One witness stated, " I am aware that concerted action is taken to assist convicted offenders by pooling pecuniary penalties. . The fine in connexion \\·ith the Suva was pooled. There has been a feeling for a long time such as this, 'Come on, George, your turn may be next ' ."

7. Whether there is Evidence that Pillaged Goods are disposed of through Receivers or " Fences." The evidence on this question points. t o the fact that there are no regular receivers or " fences " in Adelaide. The only evidence on the subject is as follows : -Police Inspector Duncan Fraser stated that, " necessarily some pillaged goods are

disposed of to receivers and ' fences,' but most of the stuff stolen is for home use. It is very hard to obtain convictions against receivers or ' fences.' vVe usually charge with unlawful possession." Detective '1.\·otter stated, " I would like to say, speaking in genera1 terms, I do not

think we have what is known as a receiver here. I do not know of any receivers or ' fences .' "

8. Special Measures, if any, are to prevent Pillaging in the future.

Many suggestions have been made by the witnesses for the prevention of pillage in the future which are embodied in the general suggestions. The following recommendations are made in connexion with the port of Adelaide and Outer Harbor, namely :-

OuTER HARBOR.

Cages .-A secure commodious double-locked cage, about 20 feet by 20 feet, · should be provided in each shed in which wines and spirits, valuable goods, and broken packages containing cargo liable to pillage after being coopered up should be placed on being landed and kept till delivered.

Fastenings on Doors.-Proper locks should be provided fo r the inside of each of the shed doors. At present the doors are only secured on the inside by a hasp, staple and pin, which it would be easy for any evilly-disposed person to leave in such a way that he could 9pen a shed door at night from outside and steal go ods, or he might hide in the shed at shutting up t ime and later on open a door and t ake what he wanted, and which, owing to the present system of tallying, would probably never be

missed. Fences and Gates .- -All the sheds and whar ves should be enclosed by a fen ce running between the railway station and the wharf sheds, with railway gates, and a gate for all other traffic to pass through, at which a responsible officer should be stationed to check goods, &c., as they leave the wharves or sheds.

Police Supervision.- The police supervision is quite inadequate. There is one . constable stationed at Outer Harbor. An occasional visit is paid to the wharves when an overseas passenger steamer is there, by a detective, a plain-clothes policeman, and a policewoman from Port Adelaide, but this does not seem t o be sufficient. In view of the iucreased amoun t of shipping, tw o extra constables should be permanen ly stationed

at Outer H arbor wharves to properly patrol the wharves and sheds night and day. Wicket Gates in Sheds .- The small wicke t gate in t he back of each shed should be permanently closed, and in lieu thereof a mall wicket gat e should be placed in the front of each shed.

PoRT ADELAIDE.

Amendment, &c., of the Law of the Stctte of South Austmlia.- -The attention of the Government of South Australia mi ght be invited to t he desirability of making shipping documents, &c ., prima facie evidence t hat the ownership of the propert y mentioned therein is in the consignee, or his assignee, as provided for in the la·ws of New Sout h Wales and Tasmania, making the receiving of stolen property, welllmowing it to have been stolen, an offence in t he State, no matter where the property has been stolen, as provided by t he English Lat·ceny Act 1916, and the Criminal Codes of Queensland and Western Australia, increasing t he penaltie for being found in possession of go ods reasonably suspected to have been stolen, and making it an offence when the value .of goods found exceeds, say, £50 .

14

Cages.-A secure double-locked cage similar to that recon1mended for each of the' sheds at Outer Harbor, should be erected in each of the sheds at Port Adelaide.

Custo1ns Bond.-A secure and co1n1nodious building should be provided in a central position, for the housing of bonded goods while in the control of the Customs Department.

Fastenings on Doors.--The fastenings on the inside of the doors of the sheds are sim.ilar to those in the sheds at Outer I-Iarbor, and are not secure. Secure locks should be placed on the inside of all the doors of the sheds.

Fences and Gates.-VVherever possible all wharves should be fenced off, and have one gate, in addition to any necessary railway gates, where responsible officers should be placed, who should check all packages leaving a wharf. Fr01n an inspection of the wharves this appears to be possible except in one or two instances.

Lighting.-Some of the sheds were found to be rather dark in the day time, for want of overhead skylights. If practicable this should be remedied, as it · affords opportunity for thieving.

Police Superrvision.-The police supervision is adequate, if the suggested arrangements be carried out for the policing of Outer Harbor, and a police station be e3tablished in the vicinity of Ocean Steamers wharf, otherwise the nun1ber should be increased. ·

Police Stations.-There should be a police station in the vicinity of Ocean Steamers wharf. This place is about a mile from Port Adelaide Police Station, and there is a great deal of wharf accommodation there, viz. :-Comm.ercial No . 1 Quay, No . 2 Quay, and Ocean Steamers wharves, ''rhere often a great 1nany overseas and

Inter-State steamers are berthed.

VVater Pol-ice.-At present there are four water policernen for the whole of the wharves, which is quite inadequate, with all the wharf frontages on the rivers and docks. Four more men should be provided, so that there can be tviro men on each

PERTH AND FR:EMANTLE.

1. Whether Pillaging is carried on to any serious extent in regard to-­

( a) Cargoes fro·m overseas ;

(b) Inter-State cargoes.

Yes, in both instances. Tonnage of cargo received at Fremantle during the year ended 31st December, 1920-Overseas

Inter-State ..

The Harbor Trust, insurance and shipping companies during the year ended 31st Dece.mber, 1920, paid clain1s on p1llaged cargo a1nounting to Add to these :figures 10 per cent. as the difference between

claims paid and clain1s made

The value of cargo pillaged so far as t he charge against . Perth and Fremantle is concerned amounted in rourtd figures to-Overseas

Inter-State

Overseas.

£9}97

970

---£10,76'7

lVIaking a total for -the -twelve 1non-ths ended 31st Deceinber, 1920 , of

Tons.

162,580 303,363

Inter-State.

£10,014

] ,000

£11,014 ----

£10,760 £11,000

£21,760

809

i5

W hether Pillaging takes place--

(a) Prior to shipment in the country of export. . Yes, to a extent. The following are instances, out of many others, in

whwh the cases containing the goods arrived in an intact condition, nan1ely :-S.s. Port Stephens, from New York, arrived at Fremantle in 1Yiiuch, 1920. Cases invoiced to contain vests and cotton hosiery. Many of the cartons in the cases were found to be en1pty, and goods to the amount of £210 had been taken.

Probably this was the work of a dishonest packer. S.s. Ormonde arrived at Fremantle from .London on 3rd May, 1920. A case invoiced to contain electroplated ware . The case was hoop-ironed in three places and cleated at the sides and ends. Goods to the value of £8 had been abstracted and

the spaces filled with English. newspapers. This also had probably been done by a dishonest packer. S.s . Orsova arrived from Lo:p.don in May, 1920. A case invoiced to contain plated ware, revolvers, pencils, and other fancy goods. Three-fourths of the goods, to

t he value of £60, had been abstracted, and the empty containers ren1ained for packing. Dishonest packer was probably responsible. · · .

S.s. El Cantara arrived at Fremantle from l\1arseilles, 15th December last. A case was placed in the ICing's \¥ arehouse. The case was cleated all round. Upon being opened it was found that the zinc lining had been cut and fourteen pairs of binoculars, value £53, were missing. · S.s. Port L yttleton arrived at Fremantle frorn New York, 22nd Decen1ber, 1920. A

case was placed in bond, and delivered to the consignees on 3rd February last. It was invoiced to contain hosiery. When opened, it was found t hat 46! dozen hose, value £73, were missing. from the centre of the case, and in the space were 24 empty bottles labelled" Bass & Co., bottled by McMillan & Co., New York";

one empty bag, branded " B. Mandel, 285 Hudson-street, City " ; half a brick; and several copies of the New York Even,ing Journal, dated 5th October, 1920.

(b) During the voyage to the port of destincttion . Yes; evidence has been given in Perth and Fremantle to show that-Goods stolen from the cargo were found in possession of a fireman, who was arrested in connexion with the matter. lVIembers of ships' crews were prosecuted at Durban and Capetown for having in

their possession stolen goods froin the cargo. Goods stolen fro1n the cargo were found in possession of of crew. A hatch was taken off the hold and goods were stolen fron1 it. An entrance was forced into a hold through a door, which had been locked and boarded

·up .

Goods were found in a main coal bunker, tied up in small parcels ready for removal.

(c) In the holds d'uring the discharge of the cwrgo from the vessels when in Australian ports. The following may be accepted as definite instances of this having taken pla·ce, namely :-A lumper was coming out of a hold with goods in his possession, and he was.

subsequently convicted. .

· A lumper was caught in the act of stealing cargo, and was subsequently convicted . By the arrest and conviction on charges of stealing from a boat, whilst the vessel was discharging at Fremantle, of a foreman, a tally clerk, and seven lumpers. A lumper was seen to smash open a case and to steal a portion of the contents thereof. By the disappearance of a case of whisky and a case of wine during the discharge of

cargo, and the subsequent finding of the empty case and an empty wine bottle hidden behind some ship's fittings for cattle.

(d) liVhile the goods are on the wharf or in the wharf sheds. Yes. The evidence discloses the fact of-The conviction of a man in connexion with stealing a caddy of tobacco . The conviction of a man not employed on the wharfs for stealing a case containing tins

of sardines. The theft fron1 shed "J" of the larnps from two motor cars ; The breaking open of shed " J " and the stealing of goods therefron1 ; The t heft of two motor tires from one of the sheds

16

The conviction of a licensed watennan for h aving in his possession ·goods stolen frorn the wharf; 'The conviction of t\vo n1en for being in unlawful possession of goods stolen fron1 a wharf; The raising of a board froril a ca.se whilst on a wharf and the stealing of goods therefron1,

the case having been previously exan1ined and reclosed; The stealing fton1 a '' cage '' of a damaged bale of calico ; · rrhe stealing of goods fron1 a wharf after being received by the Harbor Trust and prior to delivery; The disappearance from " C " shed of tVI'O cases of whisky, and the disappean:m.ce

fron1 " I " shed of two cases of liqueurs ; · · .

The arrest aJld conviction of three fire n1en for stealing tins of olive oil fr om_ a wharf.

(e ) Subsequent to delivery from the wharf

Yes, two witnesses gave definite evidence of this, one being in connexi n with t he conviction of carriers and the other in connexion with the disappearance of goods whilst bejng conveyed by carriers from the \Vharf to consignees' place of business.

3. Whether any indication can be given as to the Percentage of Pillaging under the various Paragraphs of the last preceding Clause.

No a9curate indication can be given.

4. Whether Persons convicted of Offences involving Dishonesty are En1p!oyed on the \Vharves, and, if so, under what Authority, by whom, and to what' extent.

Although the Secretary to the Fren1a.ntle I-Iarbor Trust declared as follows, nan1ely :-" Persons convicted of offences involving dishonesty are not, to n1y knowledge, employed on the wharf, that means, employed by the Fremantle Harbor Trust, because we employ every 1nan employed on t he ViTharves . The whole of thy men e1n ployed

on the wharves, here are under the Harbor Trust-every one of the1n. The waterside workers, who work on the wharves, are employed by us. We are t heir direct employers. Vve have the choice of 1nen, and we pick our men. We pick the men we require. The particular Union to which the men belong is the Waterside \iV orkers' Federation of Australia. Preference to unionists does not obtain at the port of FreJnantJe. We are working under Mr . Justice Higgins' · last award, in which lVfr. Justice Higgins refused that preference. We do, in practice, employ the members of the Union only.

Thme would -be trouble with then1 if we did not. There are no other men available. \Ve pick our men ; but. if we wanted a certain number of n1en and only a certain Irmnber were available, and if smne of these had been convicted we would still have to take then1, because otherwise the work would stop. Ther-e are no other 1nen available. It 1nay possibly .happen t hat ·when we get to the fag end of the 1nen likf? that, we can up a n1an '\ivho has been convicted. But if we can d o without him we 'do not

mnploy such a man "; definite evidence was given by several witnesses, including the Secretary of the F:rernantle Lumpe]s' ·Union, that persons who have· been convicted for offences involving dishonesty are employed on the wharves.

5. \Vhether there is any Proof of Conspirrtcy between Customs Officers and others to enable Pillaging to be successfully carried out.

There is no evidence of this.

6. Whether there is Evidence that Action . is taken to assist Convicted Offenders by

Pooling Pecuniary Penalties.

Apart frmn hearsay eviden,ce, and the evidence of witnesses who had seen collections taken up but were unable to say definitely f r what purpose, evidence was given by two witnesses who declared positively that they knew of their own knowledge that collections had been taken up by 1nembers of a Union for the purpose of paying fines imposed on a fellow member.

7. there is any Evidence that Pillaged Goods are disposed of through Receivers or " Fences."

No evidence -v as ubta:i:ned as to th · existence in: vV esten . · of. what. are

usually known as receivers 01' '•" fences."

811

17

8. What Measures, if any, are necessary to prevent Pillaging in future.

· Many suggestions have been n1ade by t he witnesses for the prevention of pillage in the future, which are mnbodied in the general suggestions. The following_ recommendations are made in connexion with the ports of Perth and Fremantle, namely :- ·

A rnendment, &c., of the L (J)W of the State of T ¥ estern A ustralia.----;The attention of the Government of Australia might invited t o the desirability of n1aking sliipping documents, marks on · cases , &c., prima f acie evidence of ownership in the consignee or his assignee on the lines similar Act s in force in New South \Vales and Tasn1ania, and increasing the penalties for being found in possession of goods reasonably suspected t o have been st ole11, and n1aking it an indict able offence when the value of the goods found exceeds, say, £50.

Oages.- Son1e of the cages in the are not secure; they should be completely enclosed. F ences .- -·All wharves should be enclosed with secure fences, and check officers .should be en1ployed at the gates.

K eys of Sheds .-The keys of sheds shonld be kept by t he Customs officials and not by one of the patrol. , . ,

. L ighters.-vVhen running between Fremantle and Perth the, covering on the light ers should be sealed . . . Water Police . ._ A sufficient nurnber of water police should be employed, and ­ should regularly patrol the water in a boat. or small n1otor launch.

SYDNEY.

1. Whether Pillaging is carried on to any serious extent in regard to­ ( a) Cargoes from overseas ; (b) I nter-State cargoes . 1res, in each case.

Tonnage of cargo received . at Sydney during the year ended 31st December, 192 0-Overseas Inter-State

Tons.

1,230,348 1,008,686

The shipping and insurance c0111panies have · paid claih1S I nt er -S tate . . for pillage during the year ended 31st Decen:rber, 1920 £129,112 £16;691 Add to these figures 10 per cent . as the difference betw'ee:p. claims paid and claims made 12,91 1 1,669

Short landings overseas, £2 7,494; and Ii1t er- State, £235 75 per cent. of short landings 20,620 176

The of cargo pillaged so far as the charge again t

Sydney is concerned amounted in round figures- . Oversea Int er-State

£162,643 £18,536

£162 ,600 18,500

l\1aking a total during the twelve months ended 31st Decen1ber, 1920, of £181.,100

2. Whe.ther Pillaging takes place-(a) P Tior to shipment in the of export.

Yes, to a considerable extent . The foll owing are a few instances out of many where the cases except in one instance arrived in an intact condition, and it i improbable that · pillage t ook place elsewhere than prior to shipment at the port of export, nainely :- , S.s. P o'rt Napier arrived from New York, 15th 1920,. one ca.·e inv:oiced. t o

contain Yale locks was found to contain ant hracite coal, . pie ·es of bagging with New York addresses on t hem, a piece of st ne and a bag of ·and. The '' eight of . the case was correct . . F.10733.-2

•

I

18

S.s. City of Delhi arrived 16th l\1arch, 1920, from New York, a case invoiced tO contain · silk go ods was found pillaged on the receiving wharf at I\Tew York after delivery by the consignor to the shipping company, and before being placed on board ship. 8. f5 . JVewby Iiall arrived .July, 1920, one case invoiced to contain silk stockings \Vas

found to contain a few 01npty bags, some empty cartons, two large stones, soiled n1ale and female outer garm.ents and so n1e underwear. By the san1e eyhip two other.cases arrivea invoiced to contain silk and cotton yarn. One ·was found to contain

oregon pine, arid an Am.erican newspaper. The other case contained two pieces of oregon pine with the bark on, an old hat, and an old pillow. The inside water­ proof wrapping had never been disturbed.

(b) During the voyage to the port o; destination.

Yes, and is proved by the following, out of many instances, na1nely :-There of a crew were arrested, stolen cargo was found in their possession, all were convicted. ·

Stolen cargo was found in a crew's quarters, six men were arrested, one was discharged, and five were convicted. Some members of a crew were arrested wearing silk stockings, portion of stolen cargo. Some members of a crew were found in possession of and under the influence of

cherry brandy and chan1pagne stolen from a cargo. A fireman was found with stolen cargo in his possession, and was convicted. A boatswain was found with stolen cargo in his possession, and was convicted. A 1nen1ber of a crew was found with goods stolen fro1n a cargo in his pillow-slip and

under his n1attress, and was convicted. Thirteen sean1en convicted of cargo.

(c) In the holds during the discharge of the cargo from thf; vessels when in Australian ports.

Yes, an1ple evidence of this is provided by the following, out of other

instances :- ·

Two rnen were arrested leaving a ship with goods wound around their bodies, and were convicted. vVhen one man was arrested for having stolen goods in his possession, several others threw away their bags containing stolen goods. Three wharf labourers were arrested, two admitted taking goods from the hold, the

other from the wharf shed. All were convicted. Lace was stolen from a cargo ; a wharf labourer was arrested, and convicted. A n1an in charge of a hold was found with two pairs of boots, stolen from the cargo, in his possession. Two wharf labourers were searched, and a bottle of vermouth and a bottle of pickles,

. &c;, were found in their possession. ·

A man was caught broaching a case of wine, and was convicted. Two wharf labourers were searched, and goods to the of £35, stolen from cargo, were found in their possession ; both were convicted. Four and a half dozen pairs of silk gloves, stolen fron1 cargo, were found in possession

of a wharf labourer. He was convicted. Some apprent!ces of ship, in charge of holds, were found in possession of stolen cargo. A wharf labourer was convicted of st ealing cargo.

(d) l'Vhile the goods are on the wharf or in the wharf sheds.

A great n1any instances of this have been given, a few of which are as follows :--­ A man was convicted of stealing hats and stockings from a wharf. One m.an, who was arrested, admitted stealing from a case in a shed, a-nd was convicted. ·

A carter was found with a case of corsets in his house, which had been stolen fron1 a shecl. A wharf labourer, when leaving a wharf, was searched, and found to have 38 \}i·atches on hin1 ; :fifteen others '''ere found at his residence. The watches were portion

of t he contents of a case, which had been landed int act. The 1nan was

convicted. . A bale of serge stolen frmn a wharf; t' o men ·were a-rrested, and convicted. Six bales of gabardine were stolen fron1 a wharf, and several persons ·were convicted.

.813

19

A case o£ silk was placed in a 'cage," pending transhipineht to New Zeaiand, and was stolen. "

Two cases of crepe, for New Zealand, were landed for transhipment, but were stolen. Three cases of goods were examined in the afternoon ; next morning it was found that one had been stolen. (e) Subsequent to delivery f rom the whatj.

• Only three instances of this have been n1entioned in the evidence, nan1ely :-A case was full when it left the wharf,. but it was half err1pty when it reached the bond. ·

A carrier took delivery of a case ; · he was subsequently found tampering with it ; goods taken from the case were found in his possession. He was convicted. A took delivery of thirteen cases, but only signed for twelve. He went to a

. " receiver," and dropped the extra ca,se there. The carter and " receiver" were convicted.

3. Whether any indication can be given as to the Percentage of Pillaging under the various Paragraphs of the last preceding Clause-No accurate indication can be given. ·

4. · Vihether. Persons convicted of Offences involving Dishonesty are employed on the Wharves and, If so, under what authority, by whom., and to what extent-There is ample evidence that they are so en1ployed. , One witness stated that about 80 per cent. of persons who have been convicted are working on the water front.

They are employed inditectly under the authority of the unions. Evidence was given that from 20 per cent. to 80 per cent. of ·the persons convicted . were re-mnployed on the wharves. · · •

5. Whether there is any proof of Conspiracy bet'!Neen Custon1s Officers and others to enable Pillaging to be successfully carried out. There is no evidence of this.

6. Whether there is Evidence that con'cert•".}d action is taken to assist Convicted Offenders by Pooling Pecuniary Penalties. Yes; one witness has seen collections taken up to pay fines or costs 9J appeals. In one case a was n1ade after a man was arrested, to pay his fine, but he

was sentenced to imprisonment. . Another witness stated that " money is forthcoming, and no difficulty is fo und in· payment of a fine when a man is convicted."

7. Whether thare is Evidence that Pillaged Goods are disposed of through Receivers or " Fences." There is no actual evidence on the question, but is no doubt that pillaged goods are disposed of to receivers or " fences."

8. What special Maasures, if any, are necessary to prevent Pillaging in the future. Many suggestions, which are embodied in the general suggestions, have been n1ade by the witnesses for the better prevention of pillaging generally. ·

The following recon1mendations are made, so far as the Port of Sydney is concerned :-A1nendrnent, &c ., of the Law of the State of Ne'!» South Wales ._ - T_h.e attention_ of the Governn1ent of New South \Vales might be invited to the de Irabihty of making

the receiving of stolen property in New South 'rVa.les an offence, no matter _the goods have been stolen, as provided by the La:ceny Act 1916 and Cnminal Codes of Queensland and Western Australia ; 1ncreas1ng the penalty for be1ng found in possession of good reasonably suspected of being stolen ; 1naking it an

offence when the value of the goods found exceeds, ay, £50; and enlarging the powers of the magistrates under Act No. 12 of 1908. - Cages .-Many of the "cages" or "deadhou es ' 'are not ecure, as they are not built up to the roof of the shed, nor grille

No . '11 shed, Walshe Bay; Nos. 2 and 3 Jetty; 4 upper f1. 1d 5 wharJ,

Darl-;ng H arbor; Nos. 19 and 20 upper and lo'V\er sneds, Jones Bay. of the "cages" are not 1arge enough. Cages in all t he large sheds should be at least 20 feet by 20 feet. ' · ·

20

. Fastenings on Doors of Sheds.-The practice in many instances in some of the sheds is to have one or two padlocks on the outside of one of the doors, and have the others all fastened on the inside by-a hasp, staple and pin, which might purposely be left in such a way at closing time by a thief that the contents of the shed would be at his mercy later on. These fastenings are on the inside of doors at Wharf,

sheds :Nos. 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7, Walshe Bay, and sheds Nos. 1 and 2, No. 10 wharf Walshe Bay, sheds Nos. 15 and 16, Darling Island, and sheds Nos. 19, 20, 21,. north, and 21, sout4, Jones' Bay. Proper .locks should be provided for the doors.

Fences and" Gates.--Every w·harf should be securely fenced when practicable, and have only one gate for entrance and exit. Lighting.-Nos. 1 and 3 sheds, No. 1 wharf, Darling Harbor, should be better lighted. I

Water Police.-The staff is at present inadequate to carry out its land and water duty effectively. The staff should be increased by at least twenty men.

BRISBANE.

1. Whether Pillaging is carried to any serious extent in regard to-­ (a) Cargoes frorn overseas; · (b) Inter-State cargoes.

Yes, in each instance. Tonnage of cargo received at Brisbane during the -year ended 31st December, 1920--- ·

Overseas Int er-State . however, is only_ approxin1ate, as the

actual tonnage could not be obtained in Brisbane or elsewhere, and is in respect of the port of Brisbane only.) The ' shipping and insurance p(tid clain1s . in

respect of and the other Queensland ports

for the year ende d 31 st Decen1ber, 1920, on- --(a) Pillaged cargo amounting to Add to these figures 10 per cent. as the ·difference between clain1s paid and

clai1ns rnade

(n) Short landings- Overseas, £250 ; and Int er­ St ate, £13 ,678 18s. ; 75 per cent. of this ._ .amounts to

Overseas.

£27,020

2,700

187

- ---

£29,907

The value of eargo pillaged so far as the charge against · Queensland is concerned- amounted in round figures to---Overseas Inter-Stat e

Making a total during the twelve n1onths ended 31 st Decen1 ber, 1920, of

2. Whether Pillaging takes place--( a) Prior to shiprnent in the country of export.

---

Tons.

72,183 288,729

Tons.

£15,270

1,527

-10,259 -----

£27,056

£29,900 27,000

£56,900

Yes ;

a fe w in stances out of many are given where t.he arrived in an intact state, and there is no reason t o assume that t he pillage t ook place other than prior to export, namely:-S.s. J(ent arrived in November, 1920, from New York. One.case invoiced to contain"

nail files. There were no goods in t he case. Case contained a cast-iron elbow son1e pieces of castings branded a ·u.S.A., " which were kept in place by

papers.

21

S.s. City of N ewcastle arrived 29th 1920, from York. One case invoiced

· contain cot.ton pi.ece .was found t o contain a large block of stone wrapped 1n straw packing and ad vert1s1ng rna tter. · ,

By sa1ne ship, one case invoiced to contain ash trays was found to contain_ a piece rock of peculic r kind_jamn1ed up with heavy brown and other papers. A san1ple

of the stone was subrrnt ted to the geologist, who stated that such stm1e ,,vas not found in Australia . ·

S.s. Surrey arrived in December, from New York. One case invoiced to contain cutlery was filled with bricks bearing the nam.e of a New York maker.

(a) During voyc,tge to the port of des tination . . Yes, as is proved G:oods being found in possession of a n1en1ber of the crew. Mmn.bers of a crew breaking through bulkheads and getting amongst cargo. Theft from cargo being discoYered at time of sailing. Goods stolen fron1 the cargo being found in cadets', crew's, and firen1en's quarters. Men1bers of a crevi being caught stealing rum fron1 the cargo .

. (c) In the holds during the discharge of the cargo from the when in Australian ports. Yes, this is shown by- · ·

Eighteen wharf labourers and ·seventeen sean1en being convicted in the last five years of stealing from holds. Some wharf labourers were being searched, one discarded his bag containing three pairs of stolen boots.

Two bottles of whisky stolen from the cargo being found in one of the labourer's bags. >·

(d) While the goods are on the wharf or in the wharf sheds. A few instances out of n1any .of this nature are as follows :­ Goods to the value of over £60 were stolen from a case on a wharf. A bale o£ marsupial s1cins was stolen from a wharf. A watchman and a sbedman were convicted of stealing goods from a wharf. Thirty drums of oil were stolen from a wharf. A case of revolvers was stolen from a Custon1s locker.

One or two cases of hatchets were stolen from a wharf. Goods were stolen from a .case of fishing appliances after being sighted in a shed.

(e) Subsequent to delivery f rom wharf. There are very few instanees of this offence. In two instances pig iron was being carted from a wharf to the· consignee. Portions we.ce dropped on a vacant allot.men,t . In one case a carter was convicted.

A case was examined and contents checked by the Custon1s and railed to Toowoom ba. On arrival it was found that some of the contents had been stolen. A case was delivered in good order to a carter. When received at the 'Y"arehouse one board was found to be knocked in and a s1nall amount of goods had been stolen.

3. Whether any indication can be given as to the Percentage of Pillaging under the various paragraphs of the last preceding Clause. No accurate indication be given.

4. Whether Persons convicted of Offences involving Dishonesty are employed on the Wharves ; and, if so , under what authority, by whom, and to what extent. Yes. They are employed by the persons requiring their services, under the authority of the unions to which they belong. They are not bound to be empl6yed if other labour is available; but, if not, and their labour is required, they must be employed.

Evidence was given that-" All of the men convicted are re-employed. " .

"Convicted persons when lmown to the stevedores are not fo r employment · if others are available." " Where we can do without them, we do so ." "We do not take them unless we are absolutely forced to do so." "It is looked upon as a bit of bad luck to be found out."

" ·All the convicted persons are re-employed while they are members of the union." "I am aware that members of my union have been convicted."

815

22

5. Whether there is any Proof of Conspiracy between Customs Officers and others to enable .Pillaging to be successfully carried out. There is no evidence of this.

6. Whether there · is evidence that concerted action is taken to assist Convicted Offenders by Pooling · Pecuniary ·

The evidence on this question is as follows , namely :-"Have seen collection 'taken up and haye heard t hat they were for the purpose of paying fines." " It is well k11own. I once saw a collection taken up, but did not know for what

· purpose. It is done openly in Townsville. ". " Am aware it has been done, but it would be. given out that it was to assist a wife ," .

7. Whether there is Evidence that Pillaged Goods are disposed of through Heceivers or " The evidence on this question is as foll ows, namely :-·· '' The premises of a dealer at Brisbane were searched and certain goods seized. " One wit ness said pillaged goods are so disposed of, but he covld give no definite instances. Another witness said, " I know that there must be such persons."

8. What special Measures, if any, are necessary to prevent Pillaging· in the future. Many suggestions have been made which are embodied in the general suggestions. The following recommendations are made fo r the port of Brisbane, nan1ely :--Amendment, &c., of the Law of the State of Queensland.-- The attention of the Government of State of Queensland n1ight be_invit ed to consider the advisability of providing for the making of shipping docun1ents, &c. , prima f acie evidence of the ownership of goods in the consignee, or his assignee, as provided by t he laws of New South Wales and Tasmania, t he licensing of second-hand dealers

and collectors as

provided by all the States except Queensland; t he enlargement of the scope of the Act dealing with goods being found in possession reasonably suspected of being stolen; increasing the penalties and making it an indictable offen ce where the goods found in possession exceed, say, £50 in value; and t he simplifying of t he appointment of special

constables in connexion with the wharves. Fastenings on Shed Doors.- With the exception of probably six sheds, nan1ely, Short-street No. 1 shed, municipal wharfs (No. 2 section), No. 2 shed, and the fo ur sheds of the Brisbane Wharf and Stevedoring Company, where one door in each shed is locked or double-locked on the out side and t he other doors are with proper locks on the inside, the bulk of the sheds on the other wharves have on e door in each

shed locked or double-locked on the outside, and all the other doors are fastened on the inside by v·arious devices which do not recon1mend then1selves as being secure. Son1e by hasps, staples and pins, some by . bolts, and others with a bar, ·becket and bolt which it would be easy for an evil-disposed pers()n t o leave in such a way that he could open a shed door at night fron1 the outside and st eal goods, or he n1ight hide in the . shed at shutting-up time and lat er on open a door and take what he wanted, which,

owing to the present systen1 of tallying, would not be Fencing of Wharves on S outh S ide of River.-Many ·of the wharves are not sufficiently fenced where they join on t o the backs of a nurnber of second-hand ·dealers' shops.

Water Police.- There should be a considerably increased staff of 1vater pohce, probably three times the present number, and they should regularly patrol the water at night. The present water patrol of one shift working fron1 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. from. Victoria Bridge to Mercantile vVharf must be quite insufficient . There should be two areas, and there should be two shifts to each area, who should patrol the water from dusk t o daylight, and they n1ight be provid,ed with · fast n1ot or-boats with as silent as possible.

Cages. --Many of the "cages " in the wharf sheds are not properly secure, inasmuch as they are not built to the roof of the shed; nor battened over the top. This applies to Short-street Wharf (Nos. 1 and 2 sheds), municipal wharfs, Circular Quay, Section 3, No. 9 shed. ·

Many of the cages have no light in them; there should be a sufficient light in every cage. Many of the "cages " are small and incapable of holding all t he valuable cargo, and broken packages should be placed in t hem.

23

A commodious "cage" about 20 feet ·by 20 feet should be provided in every shed where liable to piUage is placed. Every cage should be provided with double locks, so that one official could not open the " cage." -

Lighting of Sheds.---Some of the sheds are not sufficiently well lighted, notably the Adelaide Steamship Company's wharf No. 1 shed, and the A.U.S.N. Company's wharf, Brown's Nos. 2 and 3 sheds, which are badly lighted with gas. Kennedy's wharf No. 2 section No. 1 shed has insufficient light. Collins wharf Nos. 1 and _ 2 sheds are not sufficiently well lighted. Pinkenba wharf and shed are badly lighted.

GENERAL SUlVIMARY.

1. Whether Pillaging is carried on to any serious extent in regard to­ (a) Cargo from oversea: (b) Inter-State caTgoes.

Yes, in both instances. The value of cargo pillaged chargeable t o the seven ports previously dealt with for the year ended 31st December last, including 75 per cent. of short landings and 10 per cent. as the difference

between claims and claims rnade in round figures amounted to-Oversea Inter-State

Total

£317,000 69,000

£386,000

Short landings are very much akin to pillages. If there is any existing evidence of a package which has been pillaged, it is called pillage. If no part of the package is in evidence at the port of discharge, it is called sort landed. Of course, it may come to light later on, but seldom does, and ev.idence given by many witnesses showed that at least 75 per cent. of short landings should be charged to pillage. In a number of instances when a legitimate claim. is made against an insurance company or a shipping company, it is not for various reasons paid in full.

Evidence was given that 20 per ce:q.t. would be a fair amount to allow tbe difference, but a rate of 10 per cent.-only has been adopted. _

. There are also many cases in V\Thich cargo is not insured against pillage, and the consignee in most instances has to stand the loss. These have not, however, been taken into consideration. , ·

Responsibility cannot be accepted for the correctness of the foregoing figures. Every effort bas been made to get them as accurate as possible, and it is believed that the figures given are rather unde:r than over the actual amounts. Figures are not asked for in the C01nmission; they are given to show tbe serious extent to which pillaging of cargo takes place. Even if the figures amounted to only half the amount stated, which is quite out of the question, they would still be astounding.

2. Whether Pillaging takes place---= (a) Prior to shipment in the country of export. (b) During the voyage to the port of destination . .

(c) In the holds during the discharge of the carrgo f rpm the vessels when in Australian ports. l(d) While the goods are on the whar;f or in the wharf shed. -.

(e) S ubsequent to delivery from the wharf. All the foregoing questions have been dealt with in connexion with the ports to which they belong, and are answered in the affirmative.

3. Whether any indication can be given as to the Percentage of Pillaging under the various Paragraphs of the preceding Clause. No accurate indication can be given. It is not reasonably possible to ascertain, with any degree of certainty in every instance, where the pillage takes place ; whether at the factory, in transit to a wharf, on a wharf or in a shed prior to ship1nent, on the ship during the loading, during the voyage, at the various ports of call on the voyage to Australia, in the holds during the discharge of the cargo fron1 the vessel when. ilh Australian ports,

after discharge from a vessel while the goods are on a wharf or in a wharf hed, or subsequent to delivery from a wharf.

24

There is no doubt that· a vast an1ount of thieving of cargo takes place under the various paragraphs with the exception of (e) subsequent to delivery frorrt the wharf, of ·which there is very little evidence, and but few instances are given. The evidence shows that a large amount of what n1ay be termed scientific thieving of cargo takes place prior to shipment in the country of export, especially in America, where probably gangs of thieves carry on the work as a re1nunerative business proposition. A great deal of it, however, takes place ·in Australian ports. As strong evidence of this, there is the that the pillage of Inter-State cargo a1nou:nted to £69,000 in one yeai.

4. Whether Persons convicted of Offences involving Dishonesty are Employed on the VJharves, and, if so, under what authority, by whom, and to what extent.' -· Evidence has been given in every port, except Launceston, where no such persons

are employed at the present time, that such persons are employed on the wharves under . the authority of the persons who require their services, and the unions to which they belong. The latter take no action against their being so employed. The en1ployers are not bound to employ wh01n they know to have been convicted, provided there are a sufficient number of men to choose' fron1. If there are not more than the required number of members of a union present the. n1en known to have been convicted must be employed. This is

unfortunate, considering the fact that the unions at the ports where preference to unionists obtains ca.n prevent honest men who are not members of the unions from securing employn1ent on the wharves. As to what extent they are em.ployed, there is no bar to their employment.

5. Whether there is any Proof of Conspiracy between Customs Officers and others to enable 'Pillaging to be successfully carried out. · . ·

Although all witnesses likely to have business, or to come in contact, with Customs officers were closely exa1nined on the question, there is no evidence as to the existence of any such conspiracy. A great many witnesses spoke in high 'terms of Customs officials generally. It is understood that the suggestion was promulgated by the editor of a newspaper, who was questioned on the subject, and said he received his information indirectly from a private detective: who was also examined on the question, and said he knew of no conspiracy between Customs officers and others to enable pillaging to be successfully carried out. The private detective ad1nitted that he had had a grievance against a certain Customs official, who turned one of his employees out of a shed because he considered that the employee was not armed with proper authority. ·

6. Whether there is Evidence that concerted Action is taken to assist _ Convicted Offenders by Pooling Pecuniary Penalties. ·

+here is evidence to this effect at all the ports visited, except La:unceston, and the question is dealt with under the heading of each· port

7. Whether there is Evidence that Pillaged Goods are disposed of through Receivers or " Fences." Very little definite evidence was given at the ports visited on this question, but strong opinions were expressed that_ pillaged goods are -so disposed of.

8. What special Measures, if any, are necessary to prevent Pillaging in the future. General recomn1endations applicable to all ports are as follows, nan1ely :--Responsibility for PiUaging. - --The evidence points to the fact the responsi­ bility for the pillaging of cargo which .has taken place rests with many of the exporters, shipping and the persons having the control of wharves and sheds at the

ports of export and destination, for xity o£ supervision over the cargo from the time of packing until delivery to the consignee, and with the unions concerned for having made no effort -to stamp out the thieving of cargo that has taken place. R esponsibility of the Unions.- Without the full and whole-hearted co-operation of the unions concerned in dealing with cargoes on ·the ships and wharves, thievjng of cargo in Australia will remain for ever as a standing disgrace to good name of the nation . Even the children of tlie waterside workers must know that it is, carried on; and what kind of an education is it for them ?

Maybe, in course of time, it may become an honour instead of a disgrace to be a tb_ief ; fortunately it is not so at present. Many of the secretaries of the unions who have appeared before the Comn1ission have no knowledge of thieving of cargo taking place here. · Now they can

learn in the plainest possible terms ·that it takes place to a great extent in Australia. Tl:J.ere are as honorable men who are members of the unions as in any other professio:J?. in life, and it is to be regretted that they seem to be unable to make a stand against the thieving of cargo.. . ·

,.

819

25

· Many of the union officers who appeared before the Comn1ission are_ men of high integrity, who could be placed in, any position of trust and would · faithfully carry out their duties ; but n1ost of them, unfortunately, take the view that a mmnber of a union who has been convicted of stealing, and one of them said even up t o ha)f-a-dozen

tin1es, should have another chance, although son1e of them adn1i.tted that if a servant by then1 was convicted of stealing their goods, they not en1ploy her

again. So long as the unions concerned countenance, or even approve of, the thieving of cargo in Australian ports, by taking no action to prevent it, so long ·will cargo thieving continue, despite every other precautionary measure to prevent it.

It is not suggested that they should necessarily expel the dishonest members from the unions if the unions desire them to retain their membership, as it is a matter purely in their discretion ; but they should allot them other work, such as coal lumping, timber handling, wheat-stacking or loading, &c., where they would not be open to the

san1e temptation as they would be in handling cargo liable to pillage.

Surely for the honour and good name of the unions the members will recognise the extent of the evil and do all in their to suppress it. Supervision.-The whole system of supervision from the exporter's to the importer's warehouse considerable improvement. ·

. Generally speaking, there must be a more complete check to see that suitable cases are used and the goods are actually packed in them, and effective checks made to see that the goods the ship at the port of exp_ ort. There must be proper and competent supervision while the goods are being stowed in the holds of the ships on the voyage and at each port of call till the goods are delivered at their destination.

By the latter-1nentioned supervision is meant that officers or men of that stan1p who would be respected by the \Vorkers should be en1ployed in the holds, and not the class of men at present employed, such as seamen, tally clerks, or casual workers, who are very n1uch of the same class as the vvorkers; and evidence clearly points to the fact that they will not give their mates away if they see them knocking or pulling about

cargo to break the cases so that the contents can be s'tolen. The persons e1nployed to supervise should be paid a fair rate for their labour, not as at present, in many instances,. a less wage than the workers in the holds. •

It might be mentioned in this respect, evidence was given that in the Oceanic Company's steamers, where officers supervise in the holds, is very little thieving of cargo. These ships do not, perhaps, carry as much cargp as many other steam-ships, still the fact ren1ains that the thieving of cargo does not take place to any great extent · in these ships.

Evidence was also given as to the system prevailing on the ships of the Gennan­ Australian line prior to the war. Officers of the ships always supervised in the holds. rhere was a bonus paid by the ship to the officers on the state of the cargo delivered from the ship. If goods had been stolen from the cargo, the value was paid out of the bonus, and the officers suffered, financially, accordingly.

Uniformity of Supervision in all Ports of Australia.- There should be uniformity in the system of supervision in all ports of Australia.

Packing and Casing of Cargo .-A great deal of evidence has been given to effect that the casing of goods, especially American, Japanese (other than silks and valuable goods), and Inter-State, is so bad and easily broken that it is an invitation to workers to break the cases, if they have not been broken in stov;ing, or by.the working of the ship, and steal fron1 them.

Many ideas for the better and more secure ca ing of goods were put forward, and will be mentioned later in the general suggestions, so that all persons interested in the packin& goods n1ay fully consider the different proposals put forward and form their own op1n1ons.

One good and inexpensive form of casing, Vi hich trongly recominends itself, is the use of an ordinary strong case with battens on the inside, nailed from tbe inside , and the nails clinched on the outside, with steel bands round the ides of the case and one round the case lengthways, put on by a "Simplex" or athei· similar binder. This

system appears to give great security, and is a good safeguard against scientific thieving.

26

, Markings on Cases.--·The marking on the outside of a case, the nature of the goods liable to pillage contained therein, such as "silk made in Japan" or the name of the consignor should be discontinued, and also pencil markings on the outside of a case of the nature of the contents, as both instances are conducive to thieving.

. Ohar:ge of Marlcs .on instruct the shippers of goods

. hable to pillage not to always ship the cases under the same marks, as the marks become too well known and lead to a lot of thieving.

Tallying Cargo.-Some o£ the systems in use seem to be unsatisfactory, and leave an opening for ·the wholesale thieving of cargo. In some ports cargo is tallied into the ships and tallied out ; at others it is not. This applies particularly to Inter­ State ships in connexion with which cargo is checked on receipt at the receiving wharf,

but is placed on a ship without being tallied. On its arrival at its destination, it is landed without being tallied, and is only tallied out fr01n the shed. So that a carter rna y go to a shed for a certain package and, if it cannot be found, the package is put down as short-landed, and if it does not materialize within a certain time, the shipping and insurance companies may have to pay. Naturally, the question arises as to what becon1es of the missing package. It has probably been stolen, but when and where, fron1 the shed or wharf of receipt, on board the ship during the voyage, or from a wharf on sbed after knows ?

Protection of Heavy Oils, &c._:.Secure protection should be provided on the wharves for cases, &c., containing heavy oils, varnish, and similar cargo, which is at present left on .the open wharves and in many instances stolen.

Stacking of Cargo.-In many instances, although a fee is charged for the proper stacking of cargo in the sheds, 'no attempt is made to do so. When cargo is all jumbled up together, it necessitates a lot of pulling about when in search of the different con­ signees' packages, results in a great deal of breakage of the packages, and leaves an opening for thieving. ·

All cargo should be properly stacked in the sheds according to consignees' marks, and the heavier should not be placed on top of the lighter ones. Imposition of Penalties for Stealing frorli Ships or Wharves.-A great many of the witnesses ·examined expressed the opinion that the imposition of monetary penalties for this offence is not a deterrent, and that direct imprisonment should be imposed in every case. . There is ample provision for the punishment of these offences in all the States either by fine or direct i1nprison1nent, and the imposition of the penalty must necessarily be left to the discretion of the magistrates in cases of summary jurisdiction. 'Vhen, an offence becomes rife, such as stealing from ships and wharves, and all other forn1s of stealing, the magistrates might take into serious consideration the question whether the of monetary penalties in such cases is a su:fficient

deterrent, more especially in view of the fact that, if a monetary penalty is in1posed,. it will he paid by the convicted man's friends, and he will go. scot-free. vVith regard to the imposition of penalties for offences connected · \;vith stealing from ships or .wharves and having goods in possession reasonably suspected, of being stolen, dealt with summarily in the various States during the five years ended 31st

December last, the following abstract shows the total nu.n1ber of cases in which convictions 'were . obtained, and in how many instances monetary penalties were inflicted, direct imprisonment was irnposed, or otherwise dealt with, na.mely :-

State.

I

Convictions. Monetary Penalties. Dir ect Imprisonment.IOtherwise dealt with

Victoria . . . . .. 206 82 96 28

Tasmania . . . . . . 30 1 24 5

South Australia . . . . .. 57 25 29 3

\Vestern Australia . . . . 43 10 31 2

New South Wales .. . . 353 136 199 18

Queensland .. . . . . 89 52 27 10

778 306 406 66

In :New South Wales, in seven cases where direct imprisonment was imposed by the magistrates and were lodged, the for

by the Judge sitting .as Chau1nan of Quarter Sesswns confirming the convwtwns In each case: but reducing the order for imprisonment to a monetary penalty.

821

27

vVorkers' Lttnch-tins, Billy-cans, &c.-The workers should be prohibited from taking their lunch-tins, billy-cans, &c., into the sheds amqngst the cargo or into the holds of :the vessels on which they are working. A proper locked place should be provided on each wharf, where these articles can be safely left under the supervision of some respol;lsible person. If workers require water for drinking purposes when in the

holds, it should be ·provided by the ship.

Shelter Sheds fott ·workers .- \Vhere possible, a shelter shed should be provided 'on each wharf or group of wharves in which the workers can take their 1neals. It is believed that the only satisfactory place of this nature in Australia is provided by the Darling Island Stevedoring.and Lighterage Cmnpany Ltd., where there are n1ess-rooms

for the workers;, the foremen, tally clerks, &c ., and where there is a romn livhere the property of the workers can be left in the charge of a caretaker, and there is ·also an ample supply of hot water 'for use. This arrangement has been found to work smoothlv and satisfactorily both to. en1ployer and employees. Photographs of these place":s

nu1nbered 1, 2, 3, 4, are herewith.

· Closur·e of the Wharves and Sheds to the persons, unless having legiti­ n1ate business there, should be allowed on the wharves or in t he sheds. Even the presence of people on the wharves to welcome or faTewell friends has a distracting effect, and is conducive to the thieving of cargo in the sheds. No pen·ons should be allowed

on the .whaTves foT the purpose of fishing. Persons lurking under whaTves should be removed by the water police.

Police Supervision of liVharves and Sheds.-There should be at each port more . supervision of the wharves and sheds by plain clothes police, and the police forces should be increased for that puTpose. By their presence they would prevent a great deal of the that exists, and that would be better than allowing it and possibly getting

convictions afterwaTds. ' .

If nec.essary, the shipping ·and insurance co mpanies and others interested should bear their share of the cost, but the police employed should rmnain under the control of the Chief of Police in each State.

Watchmen on the Wharves.-In n1any instances an insufficient number of watch­ men are employed to look after the wharves and sheds at night. Some of the wharves are long, with two or three sheds on them, and in n1any instances only one watch­ lnan is employed, and he has also to act as gatekeeper. It is in such cases quite impossible for one man to do the work properly. There should, ifl many instances, be . two or more employed on a wharf, and it should be seen that the work of watching is pToperly carried out. ·

The installation of the " electric night " or "watchJ>nen's tell-tale " clock systen1 on the wharves would be useful as a check upon the watchrnen. · should be sworn in as special constables.

SUGGESTIONS l\!IADE TO THE COMl\!IISSJON. A vast number of suggestions, of them worthy of consideration, for the

prevention of pillage of cargo in the future, were made by the wit nesses before the Comn1is­ sion, a great number of them being of a similaT kind. Many of t hem have been adopted in the recon1mendations; those not so adopted have been summarized, and are set out as follows , narnely :-

At the Factory.- - A special prize of a sum should be offered by the

shipping companies and underwriters for the invention or manufacture of a suitable form of package to minimize pillage. RepTesentations should be made to the Consul-General of America and Japan respectively as to the flimsy natuTe of packing. . . .

StandaTdized cases should not be used as they are hable to subst1tutwn. Cases should be bound with hoop iron and the boards sewn with fine wire, the ends of which should be fastened with a leaden seal. Cases should be banded with a steel band of the Simplex Binder sy ten1, wired

on t he inside with staples driven from the inside and clinched on the outside·. The goods should be packed through the end of the case, the end in...,erted and nailed. Cases should be battened and hooped inside and out, wired and . ealed, and fitted with metal clips. · ·

Cases containing drapery should not be greater than 20 feet cubic measurement, as they will not stand the strain. ·

28

Cases should be made with a -vvooden cleat right round, the nailing to be let into the cleat, aJ?.d the cleat to be then hooped with iron. . ·valuable goods should be double cased, the outer and inner boards running in opposite directions.

An iron strap "with a buckle, as used by Ho:ffnung and Co's. Sydney house, should be ·

Cases should have two or three hoops of hoop iron fastened inside. A bale should be used for packing goods . Glued strips of canvas, or other material, an inch and a half wide should be bound over every seam and round the corners of a case.

Casks with the hoops screwed on should be used. Wire netting should be placed inside cases, with battens and hoops outside. Two battens inside and two outside should be used and properly riveted. The nailing of pieces of tin from the lid to the sides of a case would show at once any interference.

Secondhand cases should not be used unless they are really sound and not nail-sick. No pillage has occurred when goods have been packed in a water tank. Canvas packages should never be used.

Brittle and lmotty timber should not be used for cases. Attention should be invited to " RainsfoFd 's Patent Collapsible Unpilferable Container," stated to be in use by Cadbury's and MacRobertson's. The brands of the consignee should not be marked on the outside of cases, but that numbers should be used instead.

All old marks on secondhand cases should be obliterated, and new stencilled wherever possible. Piece goods should be packed at right .angles to the cases. . There should be an invoice inside each case showins the contents, which should

be checked when t he case is opened. . -

Wit h regard to valuable goods, a declaration should be obtained from the packer and _checker as to the contents of each case, and a copy t hereof forwarded to the consignee . From Factm·y to Wha1j.-Shippers should see whether goods taken direct to a wharf or whether they are placed in a stable or yard at night.

The hours of leaving the warehouse and of receipt at the wharf shed should be shovm on the cart note. Receipt by Shipping Company of Goods. - Greater care should be exercised by the shipping companies at the port of loading, especially New York, of cargo when received . for shipment and during the period it is waiting to be placed in a vessel. The place where cargo is received for shipment should be strictly fenced off.

Shippers should send valuable packages tmder the declared value arrangement. Shipping companies should be compelled to refuse to take delivery of cases which in their opinion come under the designation of " insufficient packages," or which are damaged or broken.

The shipping companies, as " common carriers," should bear full responsibility for the whole of the cargo and pay claims in full , and, if they were not permitted to contract themselves out of the liability, t hey would be compelled to exercise a more rigid control of the goods.

Loading in Vessels.-The weight of cases should be tested at the time of loading. Each ship should employ a petty officer to take charge of each hold, and be in charge of the hold during t he whole voyage. H e should commence duty before the ship starts loading, and it should be part of hi s duty .to inspect all cargo before it is placed in the hold.

More care should be taken in the stowage of cargo, especially in the high holds. All hatches and booby hatches should be locked during the dinner hour, and immediately the work of loading is finished fo r the day. Loading cargo after 5 p.m. should be avoided, and night work should be limited to bulk lines, such as wool, sugar, wheat, lead, salt, maize, and similar cargo.

The contents of cases not be stated on the bill of lading. During Voyage.-All holds should be as secure as a warehouse, so that carg6 could not be tampered with during transit between ports, and that during such transit the holds should be under seal.

Iron bulkheads should be used in ships instead of wooden ones. ·

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· Permanent rooms should be constructed on ships for · valuable cargo, such as has been provided on the Japanese boats for carrying silk. · Goods liable to pillage, such as drapery, clothing, boots, spirits, &c., should be stowed in hold, which would be under the immediat e supervision of an officer and t o which t he crew could have no access. Such officer should supervise the loading and discharging, which should only be done during the day time.

A bonus should be paid to the officers, based on the freedom of the ship from pillage, so as to encourage a keener supervision of the cargo. .

Immediately any package shows signs of h-avihg been tampered with, notice should be sent to the shippers or consignees, and, pending survey, it should be coopered up and kept in a secure place. A trustworthy watchman, other than a seaman, should patrol the ship at night

whilst in port. Supervision in Holds at Time of Dischar,qe.- Inspection should be made of the holds of a ship before it {)Omes into harbor. • Holds should be inspected by police or watchmen as soon as opened, and before

stevedores enter. <

All hatches and booby hatches should be locked -during the dinner hour, and also immediately the work of unloading is finished for the day. All goods out of broken packages in the holds should be packed up and sent ashore at once and not left strewn about.

Most of the pillaging is done during the night, and to minimize same, discharging of cargo liable to pillage after 5 p.m. should be avoided, and night work should be limited to bulk lines. There should be sufficient light in the holds when loading and discharging.

The shipping companies should employ sufficient men ·to search . man who leaves the ship at any time. One man in the holds is insufficient to supervise ; there should be one on the port and one on the starboard side. .

There should be a head man over the watchmen in holds, who should occasionally visit the holds. ·

Competent men who understand the stowage and discharge of cargo should be in the holds to supervise. ·

The employment of sailor men experienced in cargo work would give better results than the employment of shore men. .

Employ a detective agency which bas its own men, with a head man on board and a man in each hold. .

Detectives should be present during the whole time ships are discharging. Have ship's police or special police in holds during discharge of cargo . Employers should exercise reasonable care in the selection of their foremen. The employment of temporary workers is only a waste of money. A special body of men should be appointed as an organized association, with a secretary to manage its affairs ; the members of which ·association would be at the disposal of the shipping companies when required to act as hatch watchmen· in the

holds to supervise the loading and discharge of cargo. On Wharf and in Sheds.-There are not sufficient tally clerks employed. There should be supervision over tally clerks, delivery clerks, and watchmen. . Cases should be carefully examined when received on wharf and weighed.

Broken packages, when found in the hold, should at · once be marked with a distinctive mark showing the number of the hold (to draw attention to the fact that it is a damaged case) , sent ashore, coopered up, and placed in the cage pending smvey. No other steamer's employees should be placed in the ,sanie shed during the

agent's time as "wharfinger. ·

Cargo should be properly stacked, sorted, and disposed of to the satisfaction of the Collector of Customs in accordance with the terms of the permit. The clerk in charge of a shed should be placed in a more conspicuous and elevated place, surrounded by glass windows, so that he can see what is going on all over the sheds.

All handbags and parcels taken on to or off a wharf or into a shed should be examined. All broken packages should be placed in the cage and the cage locked. Btoken cargo, after being placed in the cage, should be removed to a special

shed, similar to the liquor or wet shed. ·

A man should be specially engaged upon the cage, and should supply a list each morning of the cargo that goes into it

•

30

Sheds containing cargo should be locked during 12 to 1 p.n1. (luncheon hour), at night, and any other time when not in use. Different ships should not discharge into the same shed. Responsibility of ships' agents for cargo should extend to some time after it leaves the ship's slings. - ·

TheJoading and unloading of cargo at the principal ports 0f the' Commonwealth should oe carried out by' the respective Harbor Trusts, who should take full control of cargo before it leaves the ship. The Fremantle system of Harbor Trust control is more efficient than that carried out in the eastern States. -

The of cargo should be carried out more expedit!ously than it is. Exannnat10n of goods by the Custon1s should not take place in the open sheds, as it is conducive to pillage owing to the noise made. ·

opened by the Customs for inspection and left in: the shed for some time

should be properly sealed and put in a cage until delivery to the consignee;

or the consignee should be allowed to take delivery of the case at once on condition that the seal is not broken urttil the Custon1s decision is given. . I Tl1ere should be only one entrance on to, or exit from, a wharf for passengers, watchmen, wharfingers, · &c . . ·

The consignees of overseas cargo, when serious ullages or pillages occur, should furnish to the police particulars of th.e number of cases shipped, a description of the goods, and the port of loading, together with the amount of ullage or pillage. The police a:t the port of loading should then be noti:fied, and full inquiries should be made by them.

· . Waterside workers on leaving a vessel should be searched . . It would be an advantage to the \Vestern Australian Trust officials if they were armed with search warrants. All persons employed on the wharves should be licensed by the Harbor Trust.

Police.-·The pillage of any cargo should be immediately reported to the police . Police officials should be en1ployed in sheds to assist watchn1en. The smne meinbers of the police force should not be employed on the wharves fron1 day to day, as they becon1e too well known to the workers.

Private detectives should be in as Custon1s c,fficers. The police should have the right to search anybody found in sti.spicious circumstances, and to n1ake an indiscrin1inate search at any tirne ; and a convenient room should be provided on every wharf for officials for such search. ·

If special police were detailed for duty on the wharves, the shipping companies or wharf owners would be prepared to pay for then1 in preference to en1ploying men of their mvn. ·

Importers should club together to subsidize police. Shipping and insurance con1panies and in1porters should raise a fund by paying 5 per cent. of their . losses for 1920, and appoii1t a detective at each port at £500 per annum.

·Watchmen.-The watchmen at present einployed are not competent in every case, and the employment of casual watchmen at so much per hour is unsatisfactory. There should be closer supervision over the watchmen. ·

Extra watchmen should be einployed when cargo is lying about. vVatchmen should be in proper uniform, and not dressed like porters . . The Harbor Trust .officials should have the power to search for anything reasonably suspected of having been stolen. . .

There should be greater supervision by -vvatchmen of the waterside, as more thieving is done from over and under the wharves than on the laiJ.d side. Cargo such as sago, tea, tapioca, &c., is pillaged to a great extent from under the wharf. -· . A gang of 1vatchmen should ·be einployed at each port, and should be Inoved

annually froin port to port . .

Stevedores, Wharfingers, &c.-A distinctive uniforn1 sh?uld be worn by wharf workers, which should be changed supervision before they _leave the wharf. A badge of employment beanng a number should _be Issued to each man en1ployed, and no worker should be allowed in a hold without such badge. The i1nproper use of a badge should be 1nade the subject of a penalty.

The n1ember of a union convicted of dishonesty should be ·debarred . from meinbership, deprived of his disc, and not e1nployed again on the wharves. . . The Wharf Labourers' Union rules should include provision for the expulsion of every 1nember convicted of pilferin.g; &c. . . . , _

· n:ian .who has been con··hcted of pillaging or .theft should be employed agau1 within twelve months of the first conviction, and not at all after t he second.

825_

31

Vnions whose members are associated with the of cargo should expel a member if he is convicted for a second ti1ne of stealing cargo, &c . Frmn to liVarehouse.-No ti1ne over six days should 1be allowed consignees to clear their goods, and consignees should prmnptly ren1ove cargo frOin whaff.

There should be facilities given to ship's agents to clear the wharves. The' delay in loading and taking delivery of cargo should be reduced. There is often too n1uch delay in getting certain goods through the Custon1s, probably due to under-staft1ng. . . -

All packages should be checked on delivery to a carter, and competent n1en should be employed by the shipping com.panies to work in conjunction with tally clerks to make a closer inspection of goods leaving the wharves, and n1ore supervision should be exercised in regard to the delivery of goods. •

Carters going on to the wharves should- not be allowed to carry ·their horses' . nosebags under their carts; they should be left outside the wharves. Carters should not be allowed to go into a shed, but should back up the-;r carts to the door thereof, and the goods should be taken to the door to be placed on the

carts. ·

Carters should be instructed by consignees to stow packag(3s in their carts in such a way that they 'vill not fall off or be stolen therefro1n, and they should be required to load their vehicles in such a way that the delivery clerk can view the marks of any package on the load.

There should be a stricter exan1ination of conveyances by road and water, i .e., carts, lighters, &c. Drivers' seats, hand-bags, parcels, horses' nose-bags, tarpaulin &c., in carts should be more closely and systematically examined at the gates.

Gatekeepers, who are in responsible positions, should be n1en of the most trustworthy kind, should do their work in a less perfunctory 1nanner, and should satisfy themselves that a vehicle's load is in .accordance ·with the gate pass . Check officers should be en1ployed at the gates.

Receipt in Warehouse.-All carters should be required to deliver to the consignee a ticket ·showing the time he received his load and time· he passed through the gate (if any). The consignee should 1nark the time of receipt at warehouse,

and retain the ticket until he is satisfied that no pillage has taken place. Receiving. clerks at destinati-on should see that vehicles do not contain 1nore goods than were sent for. . ·

Upon receipt of goods by consignee, .an exa1nination of them should im1nediately be made. ·

The goods port ion of 1nerchants' warehouses should be locked, so that no person can enter that portion after lock-up tin1e. Empty cases should be exan1ined by a responsible person in the warehouse, before they are permitted to be taken away.

General.-Educational propaganda is undoubtedly necessary. There must be education for the rising generation, to stop pillaging. Publicity of a reliable nature must be given regularly as to the pillaging that is g01ng on. _

A direct appeal to the waterside workers as a body would be successful in stamping out pillaging of cargo-the ren1edy must come fr0111 the unions and the n1en themselves. , · _

Bonuses or rewards should be 1nade to induce persons to give evidence which would convict cargo thieves, &c. The transit of goods might be divided into sections, each section .to be. in charge of some responsible person, and each such person should be asked to devise means

of safeguarding his particular section, nam_ ely :-(a) In packer's warehouse prior to export. (b) En route to steamer's side at loading port . _ _

(c,) In shed and lighters awaiting shipment at transhipn1ent and loading port. (d) In the holds during lo2Jding. (e) In the holds en route to port of discharge. (j) In the holds during discharge.

(.q) In sheds after discharge whilst awaiting for consignee to take delivery. (h) In transit fron1 sheds to consignee's warehouse. The present systmn shipping -con1panies have of poolino· los es should be eliminated.

32 •

·· , To n1ini1nize .pillaging shipping cmnpanies. should con1bine and establish a

fund to pay -the wages of detectives .. · .- .. r ..

. . . The Inanufacturers, . Il?-erchan.t's,', companies, -shipping con1panies, and sh1pp1ng agents sho1;ild vastly greater precautions t9 preyent offences being committed. They no unifonn system. · _- · . . · .. , . . .

· · Shipping companies should take. full control of pillages\ amd .shpuld refund only .5 per cent. 1nst ead of 10 per cent . of pnmage . . · · · . .

· There should be a stricter super vision of . and. the Custon1s

Department .. should make it .their business to call upon any second-hand ,. dealers exhibiting ne vv goodsfor sale, to produce invoices for the goods. . . . · · · ·

·. _ A law on the _ lines of what .is known as the Gold Stealing Act (the

Rol1;ce Amendment Act 190.:3 of \Vestern Australia) should be of .

· FUHTHER RECOlVIWIENDATION.·

· · In view .of the of the subject, the amount of evidence taken, the recommendations made, and the 1iunierous · suggestions put forward, it is further recom1nended· that· a 9f the representatives of the shipping companies, insurance companies, underwriters; merchants, manufacturers, Lloyd's ·agents, and the uni-ons· connecte.d \vith the li'and1ing of ships' carg.oes, and also the head of the police force should be held in each State to_ fully consider the Commissioner's · which have not· at the time oeen carried out, and all other suggestions that are

in this Report, and, after full consideration, tq appoin;t one of it's members to meet .. the

·representatives-appointed by each of the· other · States in further conference at .some central place, say, Melbourne, when definite and 1;1niform can · be }or ·ni.in.imizi:hg ·the pillage of cargo · in the fliture. If this be carried out, it will insure that this 'difficult. question ·will be fully cqnsidered and dealt with by son1e of the ablest business brai:ns' in Australia.

·â€¢ r

CONCLUSION . . · · ..

The Commissioner's thanks are due to Mr. John Gardner Davies of the C01nmonwealth Attorney-General's Departn1ent, who acted as Secretary to t.he Con1m.ission, and Mr . David Henning Swale, an Exq,miner of the Department of Custon1s, who was instTucted ·by the Govern­ ment to assist the Commission, for the capable a;nd willing assistance rendere

Given under my hand and seal at Sydney, in the State of New South Wales, this 4th day of July, 1921.

I .

VI/. l\1: MACFARLANE, C01nmissioner.

·'

827

EXHIBIT No. 1.- MAIN DINING HALL.

EXHffiiT No. 2.- ASSISTANT FOREMAN'S ROOM. · F.1 0733 .-3

EXHIBIT No. 3.

EXHIBIT No. 4.- KITCHEN.

l:'rmted and Published for the GOvERNMENT of the COliBlONWEALTH of AuSTRALIA by ALBEitT J. MULLETT, Gove rnment Printer for the State of Victoria.