The government had become very concerned about this
group and employed a spy,
, to join the
Spenceans and report on their activities.
He was used as the main witness in
However, the case was dropped against them after the
defence council was able to show that Castle had a
criminal record and that his testimony was unreliable.
The jury concluded that Castle was an
(a person employed to incite suspected
people to some open action that will make them liable
to punishment) and refused to convict Watson.
The government responded by passing two new laws
which banned unlawful assemblies and suspended the
Habeas Corpus Act