20 SEPTEMBER 1834, Page 15

About 12.000 gallons of illicit spirit have been seized by

the Excise, in the vicinity of the Metropolis. It is said that the firm have offered 20,0001. to comprZnuise the affair. The property seized has since been allowed by the Etcise to be taken in bowl, the firm giving security for the payment of the duty on the spirit to the amount of about 10,0001. If the parties should be exeliequered, the penalties sought to be recovered, we hear, amount to about 50,000/. — Standard.

Why should they not be exehequered? If a poor broken-down shopkeeper or mechanic cannot pay his quota of assessed taxes, his goods are seized and sold without mercy, to the uttermost farthing. And yet, in his case, there may be no fraud: poverty- is his crime. But here we have a manufacturer of large capital talking of making a compromise; though, in order to cheat the Exchequer, he has been guilty of perjury and a series of frauds, for which he has not the excuse of want. Justice to the fair trader also demands that the full penalties should be exacted. The absurd and immoral system of high duties, offers opportunity and temptation enough to the illicit dealer, without adding the chance of an escape from the legal consequences on detection. We cannot imagine any thing mode unjust than the practice of exacting the uttermost duty and penalty from the small delinquent, and compromising with men "in a large way of business," merely because they have cheated the revenue by thousands instead of hundreds.