Post Office (Protection) Act, 1884

Forgery, and improper disclosure of telegrams

32 & 33 Vict. c. 73.

11. Every person who forges or wilfully and without due authority alters a telegram or utters a telegram knowing the same to be forged, or wilfully and without due authority altered, or who transmits by telegraph as a telegram, or utters as a telegram, any message or communication which he knows to be not a telegram, shall, whether he had or had not an intent to defraud, be guilty of a misdemeanor, and shall be liable, on summary conviction, to a fine not exceeding ten pounds, and, on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment with or without hard labour for a period not exceeding twelve months.

If any person, being in the employment of a telegraph company as defined by this section—

Improperly divulges to any person the purport of any telegram;

such person shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and be liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding twenty pounds, and on conviction on indictment to imprisonment, with or without hard labour, for a term not exceeding one year, or to a fine not exceeding two hundred pounds.

For the purposes of this section the expression “telegram” means a written or printed message or communication sent to or delivered at a post office, or the office of a telegraph company, for transmission by telegraph, or delivered by the post office or a telegraph company as a message or communication transmitted by telegraph.

The expression “telegraph company” means any company, corporation, or persons carrying on the business of sending telegrams for the public under whatever authority or in whatever manner such company, corporation, or persons may act or be constituted.

The expression “telegraph” has the same meaning as in “the Telegraph Act, 1869,” and the Acts amending the same.