Saturday, 20 October 2012

20th October 1812: John Lloyd tells the Home Office that his policy of informers & abduction is having results

Stockport 20 Oct 1812

Sir

I was yesterday detained the whole of the day with Mr. Radcliffe at Milnes bridge and prevented writing to you by examinations engaging me. The hint I gave in my last was relating to a circumstance that had been commend to me by a respectable merchant in Huddersfield, just before I wrote, that he had been applied to for advise in consequence of a woman of the name of Walker wishing to know what was best to be done to save some of the murderers of Horsfall for she was apprehensive that the persons in custody under that charge might impeach those at large, & it was from that inferred, that she was interesting herself for her own Son Benjamin Walker who had been in custody under suspicion. As the woman did not act up to a promise she made I apprehended her Son in the night, since which sufficient intimation was given, as coming from her, that a Wm. Thorpe was anor. he had been also in custody — & yesterday I had him apprehended again This woman has declared to her friend with whom she advised that Mellor & Varley already at York, and said Walker and Thorpe were the four murderers but that Mellor alone fired both pistols. I apprehended the woman & strictly examined her but she denies all knowledge & denies ever having said so. I have not been put at liberty at present to produce my Informant her friend; but he has consented after certain arrangements — and he made himself certain almost that he cou’d produce the effect upon the woman's mind this very night & then he will not have to appear at all. In the mean time I have run away with one of the Witnesses to prevent her being tampered with and have placed her in my own House where she will more fully and freely give her Examination —If any thing very material occurs before I return to Huddersfield Mr. Alison will communicate it to you.

I found out the person to whom the Information had been from time to time given by watching Mrs. Walker to his House – & I have in consequence brought him forward – but cannot at present publicly.

I have [etc]
J. Lloyd

[To] J. H. Addington Esqr

This letter can be found at HO 42/128.

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