November, 1869: Suva lands declared “open for settlement” by The Polynesia Company,

The Polynesia Company, Limited, having been formed, issued its regulations in November, 1869, under which land warrants were to be issued to shareholders entitling them to “select” lands in districts declared by the Company “open for settlement”. The Suva lands were declared open for settlement. No shareholder might make more than one frontage selection in the Suva district; and any selection with a sea frontage was limited to 160 acres.

HEIRS OF JOHN B. WILLIAMS (UNITED STATES) v. GREAT BRITAIN (Fijian Land Claim*. November 0, 1923, Pages 606-611.) Cession Of Sovereignty, Annexation : Private Property Rights Acquired Previous To.Interpretation Of (“Primitive) Municipal Law. Reports Of International Arbitral Awards Recueil Des Sentences Arbitrales Benson Robert Henry (United States) V. Great Britain (Fijian Land Claims) 2 November 1923 Volume Vi Pp. 100-104 http:..www.untreaty.un.org/cod/riaa/cases/vol_VI/100-104_Benson.pdf

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July 13, 1869: First half of Cakobau debt paid by Polynesia Company: 27,000 acres sold

July 13, 1869 : These instalments were, in fact, paid by the Polynesia Company, Limited, on July 13, 1869, and on November 19, 1870, respectively.
Nine other chiefs and landowners sign: By a deed dated July 13, 1869, Cakobau and one Natika, with the ratification and confirmation of nine other chiefs and landowners, who also signed, conveyed to the Polynesia Company, Limited, certain lands at Suva to the extent of about 27,000 acres, wherein were included the 480 acres in respect of which this claim for compensation is made.

HEIRS OF JOHN B. WILLIAMS (UNITED STATES) v. GREAT BRITAIN (Fijian Land Claim*. November 0, 1923, Pages 606-611.) Cession Of Sovereignty, Annexation : Private Property Rights Acquired Previous To.Interpretation Of (“Primitive) Municipal Law. Reports Of International Arbitral Awards Recueil Des Sentences Arbitrales Benson Robert Henry (United States) V. Great Britain (Fijian Land Claims) 2 November 1923 Volume Vi Pp. 100-104 http://www.untreaty.un.org/cod/riaa/cases/vol_VI/100-104_Benson.pdf

(date?) Cakobau and his co-signatories gave a valid title in the Suva lands to the Polynesia Land Company Limited, and thus paid debt claimed by US Government

In the Reports Of International Arbitral Awards Recueil Des Sentences Arbitrales Benson Robert Henry (United States) V. Great Britain (Fijian Land Claims) 2 November 1923 Volume Vi Pp. 100-104 we find reference to how Cakobau sold land to the Polynesia Land Company Limited, and thus paid debt claimed by US Government.
Case of Heirs Of John B. William: The case was about the ownership of 480 acres of land, which were part of the land sold by Cakobau. The court ruled against the Heirs Of John B. William, in this way:
Judgement: “These appear to us to be all the facts necessary for the decision of this claim. For the purpose of our decision we make the following assumptions:
1. That Cakobau and his co-signatories gave a valid title in the Suva lands to the Polynesia Land Company Limited.
2. That the Polynesia Land Company Limited gave to their transferees valid titles in the Suva lands.
3. That a land warrant was a good muniment of title, whether perfected by a conveyance or not.
4. That no breach of the regulations of the Polynesia Land Company Limited had been committed.
5. That the title of the transferees of the Polynesia Land Company Limited was not affected by the fact that the payment of the second instalment of the indemnity by the Polynesia Land Company to the United States of America was made 16 months after the appointed date.
We now address ourselves to the decisive question: Was the claimant Henry on October 10, 1874, the date of the cession of Fiji to Great Britain, proprietor, in his own right, of the 480 acres of land in question or of any part of them?
The onus of satisfying the Tribunal on this point lies on the claimant.
Our answer to that question is in the negative. The reasonable inference in our opinion to be drawn from Henry’s operations and conduct, viewed in the light of the documents, and, in particular, of:
(1) The land warrants themselves;
(2) The agreement between Jacob Brache, Copeland and Henry dated August 12, 1870 (memorial, p. 264);
(3) The receipt signed by Henry dated August 12, 1870;
(4) The assignment by Jacob Brache to Charles Brache dated August 12, 1873 (memorial, p. 316); is that Henry was acting from the beginning, whether he be correctly described as trustee or as agent, not on his own behalf.
In any case, the evidence falls far short of discharging the onus of proof which is imposed upon the claimant.
But, further, even if it be assumed that, in the first instance, Henry acquired these 480 acres of land for himself, having regard to the facts and documents already referred to and to the sale on September 1, 1873, for valuable consideration of Henry’s 160 acres of the Harbour Block to Alfred Asbeck (answer, p. 14), we can not, in the absence of any explanation of these transactions by Jacob Brache, find ground to warrant us in making any award in favour of the claimant.
Now therefore:
The decision of the Tribunal in this case is that the claim of the Government of the United States of America be disallowed.
Heirs Of John B. Williams (United States) V. Great Britain (Fijian Land Claim*. November 0, 1923, Pages 606-611.) Cession Of Sovereignty, Annexation : Private Property Rights Acquired Previous To .Interpretation Of (“Primitive) Municipal Law. Reports Of International Arbitral Awards Recueil Des Sentences Arbitrales Benson Robert Henry (United States) V. Great Britain (Fijian Land Claims) 2 November 1923 Volume Vi Pp. 100-104 http:..www.untreaty.un.org/cod/riaa/cases/vol_VI/100-104_Benson.pdf