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WIJERATNE v. PERERA.
P. G., Kurunfgala, 3,643.
Ordinance No. 17 of 1889, ss. 5 and 18—Keeping a common gaming-place—Improper use of bagatelle table—Game of “ Kurunfgala rouge et blanc.”
The game of bagatelle sanctioned by tbe Ordinance No. 17 of 1889,section 18, is not tbe game of “ Kurunfgala rouge et blanc.”
The occupiers of a house keeping a house for the playing of thatgame for stakes, and to which the public have access, are liable undersection 5 of that Ordinance.
rpHE evidence adduced in this case established that the two-1- accused persons were the occupiers of a house in a thicklypopulated part of the town of Kurunfgala ; that there was abagatelle table in that house ; that the house was the nightlyresort of all sorts and conditions of persons ; that the table wasused for the purposes of playing a peculiar game in the followingmanner : a red ball being placed upon the table at the spot point,a man who held the cue played the white ball against it, and thespectators round the table staked money, some upon the whiteball, others npon the red ; that the Btakes were placed upon thetable; and that the accuseds took a share thereof as their
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commission, leaving the remaining money to be divided among 1896.the winners according as the white or the red ball fell into any A%9'ut *6,80-one of the holes in the table.
The Police Magistrate convicted the accused of keeping acommon gaming-place, and thereby committing on offence undersection 5 of the Ordinance No. 17 of 1889, and sentenced them topay a fine of Rs. 250 each.
Domhorat and Roberts, for appellant.
Rdmanathan, S.-G., for respondent.
Cur. adv. vult.
20th August, 1895. Browne, J.—
It is very patent that the accused have sought—under theprotection given by the Gaming Ordinance, 1889, section 18, tothe game of bagatelle—to keep or use for their own profit acommon gaming-place, whereat on a bagatelle table a game (whichafter this prosecution will perhaps be known as “ Kurun(galarouge et blanc ”) was, according to the evidence, played in thefollowing manner:—
The red ball being spotted, Horatella, a carter, who alone andalways throughout the fifteen minutes when the witnesses werepresent handled the cue, played the white ball against it. Thespectators standing on either side of the table had made bets,placing their money on either side of the table, whether the redball or the white ball would fall into a hole. If both balls fell in,they were taken out and the stroke was repeated. When onlyone ball had on the first or after the repeated Btroke fallen into ahole, those who staked their money on that coloured ball fallinginto the hole took their money. The bets were of various sumsup to 50 cents. The two accuseds, father and son, stood on eitherside of the table, and before each game was commenced took ascommission 3 cents out of each 25 cents staked, i.e., 6 cents out ofeach 25 cents bet. Five or six such games were played in thefifteen minutes.
Appellants called no witnesses out of the thirty or forty Sinha-lese, Tamil, Moor, and Malay frequenters of their salon on thisoccasion to depose to the game being other than what thewitnesses for the prosecution described. In their petition ofappeal they submit that the Btroke of white on red so describedis but the firBt stroke at bagatelle, and that this limitation of thegame to a series of repetitions of first stroke is only such avariation of the ordinary game as pyramids and snookers may be
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1895. considered to be of the game of “ billiards,” which the OrdinanceA*ju*t IS, BO. leaves legitimate. It is inadvisable now to hazard any opinionwhether those variations would be so protected. Probably thosewho are in doubt on the point will not play them for cash bettingor stakes. But the judgment of the Police Magistrate, that thisKurunlgala rouge et blanc is not the game of bagatelle sanctionedby the Ordinance, is one which I affirm. For this, which Ibelieve to be the first conviction of the kind, I reduce the sentenceto Rs. 100 fine, and in default three months’ rigorous imprison-ment.
WIJERATNE v. PERERA