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[171] He proves to me that this was his constant custom and system; that, when the entire quantity of corn had been brought to him under the name of tenths, then he was accustomed to exact money from the cities, to object to the corn delivered, and as for all the corn which he was forced to send to Rome, he sent that quantity from his own profits and from his own store of corn. I demand the accounts, I inspect the documents, I see that the people of Halesa, from whom sixty thousand modii had bees levied, had given none, that they had paid money to Volcatus, and to Timarchides the clerk. I find a case of plunder of this kind, O judges, that the praetor, whose duty it was to buy corn, did not buy it, but sell it; and that he embezzles and appropriates the money which he ought to have divided among the cities. It did not appear to me any longer to be a theft, but a monster and a prodigy; to reject the corn of the cities, and to approve of his own; when he had approved of his own, then to put a price on that corn, to take from the cities what he had fixed, and to retain what he had received from the Roman people.


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