5 APRIL 1873, Page 3

The sentence passed by Judge Lawson on Mr. McAleese, the

publisher of the Ulster Examiner, for an act of undoubted con- tempt of Court, is, to say the least of it, somewhat severe. The articles incriminated imputed both to the Crown and to the Judge -unfairuess in the administration of the law founded on religious -and party preference. The judges have generally exercised their discretion in regard to such offences with so much dignity and forbearance, that we are reluctant to consider the necessity of imposing any restraint upon a prerogative power eminently -essential to the protection of justice. But it may be fairly -doubted whether it is necessary in the present age to inflict such

sentenceas four months' imprisonment and a fine of £250 on even a journalist, even in Belfast, without allowing him the -opportunity of trial by jury.