Page:Transportation and colonization.djvu/38

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both formidable and corrective, or preventive and reformatory, which I conceive it must necessarily be under a proper system of management, it will no longer have the effect of accelerating the rate of increase of crime in England, even taking it for granted that it actually produces that effect at present. Besides, there is a large proportion of the criminal population in England which there is no prospect nor probability of reforming under any process of penal discipline that can be had recourse to in the mother country; and it is chiefly the influence and example of that class of criminals,—those that have been already punished but are still unreclaimed,—that tend in the highest degree to the increase of crime, by drawing innocence and inexperience within the vortex of criminality. The steady increase of this class of criminals, constituting what Captain Basil Hall, in his evidence before the committee of the House of Commons on secondary punishments, styles "the culprit population" of the country,—criminals who form the regular inmates of its gaols and penitentiaries, and who are no sooner dismissed from one place of confinement than they find their way to another,—has been observed and deplored even in the United States of America. The gradual abstraction of this class of criminals, under a properly organized system of transportation,