True Crime Trials from St. George’s Hall

The trial of Veronica mutineers


This trial saw three German seamen, 29-year-old Gustav Rau, 18-year-old Otto Monson, and 30-year-old William Smith, accused of murdering Captain Alexander Shaw and four other members of the crew of the Veronica. The three men were tried at St George’s Hall.

Four sailors, along with the cook, were found Northeast Brazil and rescued by another ship.

Evidence from the cook, Moses Thomas, and the fourth sailor, Ludwig Flohr, was used against the three others.

The cook told the court that it was not a general mutiny but just the three accused as well as Flohr. He told the court that at night they knocked on the heads of the crew before throwing them overboard.

Flohr, who was a witness in court, told the court that they had shot Captain Shaw and another crewmate before confining them to the cabin for two or three days. The captain begged for his life to be saved, but after days he was shot and thrown overboard.

The cook had told the story to the captain of the ship that rescued them, and the four men were arrested as soon as the ship landed in Liverpool. Three of them were tried at St George’s Hall and sentenced to death.

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