CASHIERING OF HALF-PAY OFFICERS; CASE OF DR. WILLIAMS.
AMONG the notices which stand in the Order-book for next ses- sion, is one by Sir EDWARD CODRINGTON, for a return of the officers who have been deprived of their half-pay, without their consent, since 1790. Sir EDWARD, we believe, has been induced to take up this question principally by the consideration of the case of Dr. WILLIAMS, who complains of most unjust treatment by the Board of Admiralty. We have seen Dr. WILLIAMS Memo- rial to the Admiralty, and his Petition to the House of Commons in the last number of time United Service Journal. The former document is published as a pamphlet, with an appendix containing proofs of the truth of the statements he puts forth. These state- ments are of course ex parte, and should therefore be received with some caution : but, making every allowance for the natural bias of a man who pleads his eau cause, it is impossible to read the account given by Dr. WILLIAMS of his treatment by the Admi- ralty, without seeing that he has been made the victim of gross injustice and oppression. It appears that, in 1826, Dr. WILLIAMS, when in France, was struck of the half-pay list, on time representations contained in the letter of a fellow named COLLYER, who charged him with some fraudulent money transactions. He was cashiered without any opportunity being given for his defence ; as the Admiralty acted solely on the report of their solicitor, who pretended to have sans- fled himself by inquiry into the truth of the charge. He must have been very easily satisfied ; for the charges against Dr. WILLIAMS are proved to have been totally false. This COLLYER derived his information, as he afterwards himself confessed, from a swindler named BYERLEY, who had a spite against Dr. Wm- LIAM% COLLYER has been struck off the rolls as an attorney ; and BYERLEY has been advertised as a swindler, since 1812, in the printed circulars of the " Society for the Protection of Tradesmen against Swindlers and Sharpers." Yet, upon such evidence as this, was a gentleman of irreproachable character, a graduate of Edin- burgh University, a member of the London College of Surgeons, and of Cambridge University, struck off the list of Navy Sur- geons, after twenty years' service; during which lie distin- guished himself, to use the words of the Honourable Captain WILLIAM GORDON, as " an extremely zealous, sery able, and attentive" officer, with the conduct of a "perfect gentleman." Dr. WILLIAMS has repeatedly applied to the Admiralty for redress; offering to prove his entire innocence of the charges brought against him : but it has been with the greatest difficulty that lie has procured even a copy of the letter upon the faith of which he was cashiered. The whole of this case must come before the public next session, if not before; for Dr. WILLIAMS intends to contest in the Courts the right of the Board of Admi- ralty to dismiss an officer without trial, and deprive him of his title to half-pay. We shall, therefore, only add at present, that the testimonials to Dr. WILLIAMS' professional and private cha- racter, from Lord GAMBIER, Captain Gonnose the Reverend Mr. FULL AG A It of Chichester, Lord DE SAUMAREZ, and others, prove incontestably his right to be heard, at least, in his own defence against the charges advanced by a disgraced attorney and a noted rogue. We shall keep our eye on the legal and Parliamentary proceedings in this case.