1910/58 Rex .vs Lee Sing and Lee Lewis – carrying dangerous weapons
As part of the Chinese Historical Wrongs Legacy Initiative, the BC Archives has digitized a selection of documents related to criminal prosecutions against the Chinese community from 1866 to 1914, found in GR-0419. These are mainly records created as part of the preliminary hearing held before a judge in order to determine whether there was sufficient evidence to proceed to trial. There are often lengthy witness statements, and cross examinations by both prosecution and defense lawyers. The eventual verdict is sometimes recorded on the outside of the docket. They offer a fascinating glimpse into 19th and early 20th century criminal activity around the province, and ways in which the Chinese community was stereotyped. The records offered for transcription here are a small selection; for additional digitized material from GR-0419 click here.
*Please note that archival source materials are original historical documents that have not been censored, reviewed or otherwise altered by the Royal BC Museum. Some materials may contain content that is racist, sexist or otherwise offensive. In addition, GR-0419 records deal with subjects such as assault, murder and abuse, which may upset some readers. The Royal BC Museum is only the custodian of archival materials; the content does not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the Royal BC Museum.
*All transcriptions are provided by volunteers, and the accuracy of the transcriptions is not guaranteed. Please be sure to verify the information by viewing the image record, or visiting the BC Archives in person.
STATEMENT OF THE ACCUSED. CANADA, Province of British Columbia, County of Vancouver, City of Vancouver Lee Sing and Lee Lewie stand charged before the undersigned A, E. Ball, -Esq, Police magistrate and one of His Majesty's Justices of the Peace in and for the County aforesaid, this 6th day of July in the year of our Lord one thousand nine hundred and ten for that the said Lee Sing and Lee Lewie on the 27th day of June 1910 at the City of Vancouver while carrying offencive weapons to wit: revolvers were unlawfully with goods liable to seizure under the law relating to customs, to wit: 4 cans of opium!. Contrary to the form of the stature in such case made and provided. And the said charge being read to the said Lee Sing and Lee lewie and the witnesses for the prosecution, being severely examined in his presence the said Lee Sing and Lee Lewie are addressed by me as follows:- "Having heard the evidence do you wish to say anything In answer to the charge? You are not obliged to say anything unless you desire to do so; but whatever you say will be taken down In writing and may be given In evidence against you at your trial. "You must clearly understand that you have nothing to hope from any promise of favour and nothing to fear from any threat which may have been held out to you to induce you to make any admission or confession of your guilt, but what ever you now say may be given in evidence against you at your trial, notwithstanding such promise or threat." Whereupon the said accused says as follows:- "Nothing to say." Taken before me at the City of Vancouver the day and year first above mentioned. (Sgd) A. E. Ball. BC Archives GR-0419 Box 143 File 1910/58 BRITISH COLUMBIA. ATTORNEY GENERAL. Attorney General documents.