|Author(s)||Manuel José da Costa Alves|
|Addressee(s)||António da Fonseca Moura|
Private letter from Manuel José da Costa Alves, merchant, to António da Fonseca Moura, merchant.
The author gives some news about his business.
Domingos Alves Guedes, a merchant from Porto, accused António da Fonseca e Moura, Manuel José da Costa Alves, Félix Bernardo França and Manuel da Costa, his partners, of deceit and betrayal. The second of the defendants was the main accused in the case, having already been arrested under the same charge. In that case, he was said to have used a false handwriting and false signs in a bill of exchange of eight "contos" and five hundred thousand "réis". Both letters here transcribed had been seized from this defendant for investigations within a previous process. After an examination by the notaries, it was proved that the bill of exchange was false.
«Mr. António da Fonseca Moura Porto, 18th august, my friend and lord. I have here your letter and I see its content and what it says; in the circumstances you speak, I'm sure that everything I saw and did concerning you and him, I'll tell honestly whether it is against you or him. First of all, I'm aware that you lent him an English bill of exchange of more than two "contos de réis", it is reported in the bond you have, done by me, in S. João da Luz. You, or one of your servants, have also received from him, Guedes, six or seven hundred thousand, but I don't know if there's any register in Guedes's book, where that information may be, and after that I went to Le Passage and came back right away. Two days later I was forced to go to São João da Luz again and I was instructed by him, Guedes, to do another bond of eight "contos" and five hundred thousand "réis", which he received from you,right there, almost the whole amount and the other part he had received a few days before, in the presence of Teles Bernardo França and his servant Costa, and everything was done almost at the end of the month, from 25th on, as you will know better, and as is registered in the bond. I know that, afterwards, you borrowed three "contos" and two hundred thousand, or something like that, certainly more than three "contos" which you promised to pay. And Guedes took right away six hundred and so thousand "réis" from those three "contos" and thousand "réis" you gave him. These six hundred thousand "réis" were for him, Guedes, to give to some muleteers and the other money Guedes took to Burgos, to give to three along with his brother, and all this was seen by his servant Mendonça and a soldier who he, Guedes, had wired to watch. This is what I know, what I tell you above, and there must be no room for doubt because, if I had the time, I could even let you know the days and the exact amount of money because, in the papers I brought from France, I have some notes, except of the day I left Palencia. In what concerns this Guedes, since there were no news from them, it's possible that he had already left, this fact I'll investigate, but whether he had left or not, this is what I truly know and witnessed, and I can inform you or say it in front of (...) or anyone else, but I remain your humblest servant. Manuel José da Costa Alves.»
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