December 9, 1770

Privy Council Disallows Virginia Act to End Slave Trade

The Privy Council disallows as inequitable a 1769 act passed by the Virginia assembly to lay a 15 percent duty on imported slaves, bringing the total import duty to 25 percent, "which would, and is intended to, operate as an entire prohibition on the importation of slaves into Virginia." The Privy Council holds that the Virginia assembly does not have the authority to pass any law that directly applies to anyone outside of Virginians, such as the merchants of Bristol and Liverpool.

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