Illicit backyard still

An illicit back yard still in the 1930s. This is not an image of Valbusa’s Coledale still.

An illicit back yard still in the 1930s. Note: This is not an image of Valbusa’s Coledale still, but would have been similar to what the police found at Coledale. Picture: Supplied

FRANK Valbusa (45) was charged with having an illicit still on his premises at Coledale (NSW) on March 23rd, also with having illicit spirit in his possession.

Mr. C. L. Quirilivan, prosecuted on behalf of the Customs Department. Defendant pleaded guilty. George S. Bradley, Custom’s Inspector, stated about 9 p.m. he and the police searched defendant’s premises.

In a cellar a 5 gallon wicker jar was found containing one and a quarter gallons of spirit. At first defendant said he was given the spirit but later admitted making it; The coil of the still was found in the bushes.

The jar of spirits was buried in the earth bank at the end of the cellar. The spirit was of the type of grappa. There was also 35 gallons of wine in the cellar. Defendant said he had nothing to say.

Mr. Quinlivan said the minimum penalty was £25 and the maximum £100. There had been several similar cases in this district but these did not seem to act as any warning.

The defendant knew he was doing wrong, because he had hidden the spirit. Sergeant Newland said defendant was a married man with nine child ren. He was a returned soldier and the police knew nothing against him.

Fined £25 with, 4/ court costs and £2/2/ professional costs.

The second charge of having the spirit on the premises was withdrawn.

There was a further charge against Valbusa for having in his possession an engine belt reasonably suspected of being unlawfully obtained. He pleaded guilty. Constable Bleechmore said during the search he found the belting. Subsequently defendant said he found the belting at Coledale cokeworks some years ago.

Fined £2 or four days.

– South Coast Times Friday April 13 1934.

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