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RELATING TO POOR LAW, CRIMINAL LAW, LICENSING, RATING,
AND OTHER SUBJECTS CONNECTED WITH
THE DUTIES AND OFFICE OF MAGISTRATES,
THE HOUSE OF LORDS, THE COURT OF APPEAL,
AND THE COURT FOR CROWN CASES RESERVED.
AS REPORTED IN THE
LAW JOURNAL REPORTS
DURING THE YEAR
W. E. GORDON AND A. J. SPENCER.
Law Publishers and Booksellers.
CASES RELATING TO
POOR LAW, CRIMINAL LAW, LICENSING, RATING,
AND OTHER SUBJECTS
THE DUTIES AND OFFICE OF MAGISTRATES
ALL THE COURTS
[IN THE COURT OF APPEAL.] plaintiff the sum of 1,0001. in a certain A, L. SMITH, L.J.
event which happened on December 10, RIGBY, L.J.
1897. COLLINS, L.J.
HALL V. COX.
The defendant was the proprietor of a 1898.
weekly newspaper called the Rocket, and Dec. 2.
in the issue of the paper of November 13, [68 L. J. Q.B. 167.]
1897, he published in the paper the fol
lowing offer: Gaming-Lottery-Ofer of Prize for
“1,0001. for you !!! A fortune easily Prediction of Number of Births and
Your golden chance in life has Deaths in London during Specified Week
come to win a fortune easily without Chance-Skiu.
working for it. Any man, woman, or The proprietor of a newspaper, by ad
child may win a prize of 1,0001. herewith vertisement therein, offered to the readers
offered to readers of the Rocket. You have of the paper a prize of money for a correct only to answer a simple question in accorprediction of the number of male and female dance with the following conditions to win births and the number of deaths in London
this fortune. Conditions : According to during a specified future week :-Held, that
the Registrar-General's returns, the numthe offer did not constitute a lottery within
ber of births and the number of deaths in the meaning of any of the statutes declaring
London during the week ending Decemlotteries to be unlawful.
ber 12, 1896, were as follows-Births
(males) 1,342, (females) 1,213; deaths, Appeal from the decision of Lawrance, 1,539. A prize of 1,0001. is offered for a J., at the trial of the action ordering correct prediction of the numbers of male judgment to be entered for the defendant. and female births and the number of
The action was brought to recover deaths in London during the week ending 1,0001. due to the plaintiff from the December 11, 1897. All that competitors defendant under a contract by the defen are asked to do is to fill in the following dant of November 13, 1897, to pay to the voucher, paste it on a sheet of paper, and
Hall v. Cox, App. send it with a coupon cut from the front it contained an element of skill, and a page of the Rocket in accordance with the lottery is a matter of pure chance coninstructions given below. Here is the taining no element of skill or judgment. voucher, and no other will serve for the Neither was the competition a lottery competition : 'I say that the number of within the meaning of the statutes rebirths and the number of deaths in Lon lating to lotteries—Caminada v. Hulton don during the week ending December 11, ' and Stoddart v. Sagar (1895). ? 1897, as disclosed by the Registrar-Gene These two cases decided by Divisional ral's returns, will be—Births, (male). . .; Courts of the Queen's Bench Division births, (female) ...; deaths, Name, were rightly decided and ought to be Address,
. Fill affirmed. In both these cases prizes were in the numbers of births (male and female) offered for correctly naming the winning and deaths you predict in the spaces left
horses of horse races which were shortly blank for that purpose. Write your name, to be decided, and in both the Judges held address, and the date in the spaces marked that the competitions were not lotteries for these, and send your voucher to the within the meaning of the statutes, since office of the Rocket, 26 Southampton they involved an element of skill. Street, Strand, London, W.C. N.B.- The In the same way an element of skill is envelopes containing the vouchers should involved in this competition, since it be inscribed •1,0001.' on the top left-hand would be impossible to succeed without a corner, and must reach the office of the considerable study of the RegistrarRocket not later than the first post on General's returns. No definition of the Friday, December 10. Competitors are word “lottery” is to be found in the not limited to one prediction, but each statutes, which generally appear to have prediction must be written on one of the been passed to deal with some particular above vouchers cut from a current issue form of gambling in vogue at the timeand a coupon cut from the front page of see 10 & 11 Will. 3. c. 17, the Lotteries the Rocket. Should more than one correct Act, 1710 (9 Anne, c. 6), the Lotteries prediction of both births (male and female) Act, 1721 (8 Geo. 1. c. 2), the Gaming and deaths be received, the money will be Act, 1738 (12 Geo. 2. c. 28), the Gaming divided."
Act, 1802 (42 Geo. 3. c. 119), and the The plaintiff duly fulfilled all the con Lotteries Act, 1823 (4 Geo. 4. c. 60). ditions of the offer, and, being unable to Nor does this competition come within obtain payment of the money, brought any provision contained in those Acts. the action to recover it.
In alorris v. Blackman (1864] 3 the proAt the trial of the action, before prietor of an entertainment, to which the Lawrance, J., and a special jury at the public were admitted on purchasing Leeds Assizes in March, 1898, the jury tickets, who in accordance with an adverfound a verdict for the plaintiff for 1,0001., tised promise distributed presents amongst but the Judge held that the competition, his audience according to his caprice, was being more a matter of chance than of held to have kept a place for the exercise skill, was a lottery, and upon that ground of a lottery within the Gaming Act, 1802, ordered judgment to be entered for the but there the ratio decidendi was that the defendant.
distribution was a matter of pure chance, The plaintiff appealed.
and that every one of the audience thought The original defendant died between he had a chance of winning a present. In the trial of the action and the hearing of Taylor v. Smetten (1883]," where a person the appeal, and his legal personal repre sold packets, each containing a pound of sentatives were substituted as defendants. tea and a coupon entitling the purchaser
to a prize, at 28 6d. a packet, the prizes Brooke Little, for the plaintiff.—The varying in character and value, the decicompetition was not a lottery in the ordinary meaning of the word, which is given
(1) 60 L. J. M.C. 116.
(2) 64 L. J. M.C. 234;  2 Q.B. 474. in Webster's Dictionary as the distribu
(3) 2 H. &C. 912. tion of prizes by lot or chance, since (4) 52 L. J. M.C. 101; 11 Q.B. D. 207.
HALL v. Cox, App. sion of Field, J., and Hawkins, J., that calculation is to be made. The enquiry the vendor kept a lottery was founded on depends on a study of the previous rethe consideration that the purchaser turns, the rate of the increase of the popuercised nochoice: what he got he got without lation, the death rate, and similar statisany option or action of his own will, but as tical investigations. It is, therefore, not the result of mere chance or accident.” wholly a matter of chance, but contains In Barclay v. Pearson (1893)]," again, in an element of statistical research. It seems which a prize was offered for the dis to me that the competition is similar to covery of a missing word, the competition the competitions in Caminada v. Hulton was held to constitute a lottery on the and Stoddart v. Sagar," and that those cases ground that the distribution took place by were rightly decided. In Caminada v. chance. See also Sykes v. Beadon (1879], Hulton Mr. Justice Day and Mr. Justice which, however, was disapproved in Smith Lawrance held that the offer of a prize to V. Anderson (1880). These cases shew any purchaser of a book who filled up a that the statutes dealing with lotteries only coupon it contained with the names of six, apply to competitions which depend wholly five, or four of the winning horses in six on chance. The competition in the present selected future races was not a proposal and case, therefore, does not come within the scheme for the sale of chances in a lottery statutes, but is indistinguishable in prin- within section 41 of the Lottery Act, 1823, ciple from the competitions which in upon the ground, as I understand, that Caminada v. Hulton' and Stoddart v. the skilled knowledge of the competitor Sagar? were held to be lawful, and conse for the prize was an ingredient in the quently judgment ought to have been matter. In Stoddart v. Sagar 2 Baron entered for the plaintiff.
Pollock and Mr. Justice Wright came to The defendants did not appear,
and a similar conclusion. In my judgment were not represented by counsel.
these decisions should be approved. I feel
some difficulty in understanding in what A. L. SMITH, L.J.-We have not had
way Mr. Justice Lawrance reconciled his the advantage of hearing the point argued
decision in the present case with that given
The upon the side of the defendant, but I am
by him in Caminada v. Hulton.' clearly of opinion that this competition
result is that the appeal must be allowed. did not constitute a lottery. The selection of the numbers for which, if correct, RIGBY, L.J., and COLLINS, L.J., cona prize is offered did not depend on mere curred, chance. It depended largely upon chance, but not entirely, and the cases shew that
Appeal allowed. to constitute a lottery it must be a matter depending entirely upon chance. Here an element of statistical enquiry entered into the competition. The offer
Solicitors--H. G. Campion & Co., agents for
A. Muir Wilson, Sheffield, for plaintiff. of the prize was for a correct prediction of the numbers of the male and female births and of the deaths in London,
[Reported by Joseph Smith, Esl.,
Barrister-at-Law. as disclosed by the Registrar-General's returns, during a particular week in 1897. The newspaper which makes the offer itself sets out the number of these births and deaths according to the RegistrarGeneral's returns for the corresponding week of the year 1896. That is clearly intended as a starting point from which a
(5) 62 L. J. Ch. 636;  2 Ch. D. 154.