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Wing Shin Yook Prisoner Number 29167 Prison Register Page

1900-06-15

Public Record Office Victoria (State Archives of Victoria, Australia)

Public Record Office Victoria (State Archives of Victoria, Australia)

Early on Good Friday morning in 1900 Constable Clarke noticed smoke coming from a Chinese shop in Little Bourke Street. He sounded the fire alarm on Exhibition Street and a fire cart soon arrived. Firemen located the fire in a storeroom among bundles of newspapers, jars, Cameo cigarette boxes, canisters and tin boxes. Initially, police believed the owner of the grocery store, Wing Shing Yook had lit the fire himself but further enquiries confirmed he was in Ballarat at the time. Despite this alibi, Wing Shing Yook was investigated by the police and his insurance agency. In his insurance claim, Wing Shing Yook declared a substantial loss on account of a large amount of opium damaged in the fire. Detailed investigations into the damage, however, revealed many of the canisters were empty or contained other substances such as Chinese herbs. The exaggerated insurance statement was declared false and the insurance company filed charges against Wing Shing Yook for perjury. The trial was held at Melbourne Supreme Court and he was sentenced to 12 months’ hard labour.

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Details

  • Title: Wing Shin Yook Prisoner Number 29167 Prison Register Page
  • Date Created: 1900-06-15
  • Provenance: VPRS 515/P0, Central Register of Male Prisoners, unit 54, folio 35
  • External Link: Digital Archive File
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