Act anent border thiftis

Forsamekill as ane of the greittest causes that hes movit thift and ressett of thift to increas within this realme, and speciallie within the bordouris and merchis of the same, hes bene the impunitie of the committaris thairof be ressoun it hes bene ressavit in consuetude this lang tyme bigane that the making of the redres of the guidis and geir tane to the partie grevit be the committaris of the thift and ressettaris of the same hes bene ane sufficient exoneratioun to thame fra ony punischement quhilk justlie thay deservit in thair personis for being giltie and culpable of the saidis crymes, albeit gif sic offence had bene punist with severitie in the personis committaris of the same, thay be thair example wald haif movit and terrifiet utheris be thair misbehaviour to incur the lyke danger. And quhair as be the ancient lawis of the bordour thair usit na redres at all to be maid except be the opposite wardanis of this realme and England of guidis tane be the subjectis of ane natioun fra the uther, and nawayes within this realme be ane subject to ane uther, bot the committaris of sic crymes wer punist to the death; and oure soverane lord, finding that the dissuetude of that lovable law and custome in the rigourous executioun of the personis of the saidis thevis hes causit the grettar misregaird and contempt of his hienes authoritie and the less accompt be thame to offend, hes thairfoir statute and ordanit that in all tyme heirefter within the boundis of the saidis merchis, or ony of thame, conforme to the first lawis and custome of the saidis bordouris, nane of the wardanis of the same nor na uther officiaris sall nawayes tak the redress of the guidis and geir to be reft and stollin fra the doaris and committaris of the same for the satisfactioun of the partie reft and spuilyeit, bot sall caus execute with all rigour the lawis and actis of parliament maid aganis thevis and thair ressettaris and caus thame be punist to the death conforme to thair deserving as thai will answer to his majestie upoun the discharge of thair offices. And siclike it is statute and ordanit that gif ony persone quhatsumever giltie or culpable of thift or resset of the same salhappin to be fugitive for the said cryme and will onnawayes enter to the lieutennent, wardane or uther officiar to be apointit in the said bordour for pacifeing of the same and administratioun of justice thairintill, the said lieutennent, wardane or uther officiar sall caus burne his house, pute his wyfe and bairnis furth of the same and mak intimatioun of thair dissobedience at the mercat croce of the schyre, to the effect that the knawledge of the same may cum to the haill inhabitantis within the said schirefdome. And oure soverane lord and estaittis declairis that quhatsumever persone sall resset, supplie or interteny the saidis fugitive personis, thair wyfes, bairnis or geir efter the said intimatioun salbe culpable and giltie of his bigane offences and sall remane answerable to his hienes and his officiar for ony offence to be committit be the said persone fugitive thairefter. And thir presentis to be extendit alsweill to hieland as bordour.

  1. NAS, PA8/1, f.25r-25v. Back