HC Deb 29 June 1815 vol 31 cc1039-40
Mr. Douglas

presented a Petition from several prisoners in the King's-bench, adverting to the Report of the Committee upon the alleged abuses of that prison, and praying for an opportunity of testifying to the humane conduct of the Marshal, upon whose character the said Report appeared to the petitioners to cast some reflections. Upon the motion for laying the Petition upon the table,

Mr. Bennet

said, that the Report of the Committee of the House, appointed to inquire into the state of the King's bench Fleet, and Marshalsea prisons, bad cast no other reflection on Mr. Jones, than what was warranted by the evidence that had been adduced before them. That evidence proved, that he was little acquainted with what occurred in his prison; and he avowed himself, that be seldom or ever entered within its walls. The numerous contradictions given to his evidence by others, who were in the constant habit of seeing and hearing what was really going on, would have left no doubt of that being the case, even if he had not acknowledged it. The committee had therefore stated, that a keeper of a prison, receiving from it a net annual income of 3,590l., and not daily inspecting and visiting the prison, and not being personally acquainted with all that was transacted therein, seemed to them to prove the existence of a state of things that ought not to be suffered to continue.

Mr. Calcraft

said, he had heard that Mr. Jones was not pleased with the Report of the Committee; but he must say, that it appeared from the evidence of Mr. Jones himself, that he was not sufficiently acquainted with what was passing within the prison. The sole direction and management of the prisoners was entrusted to Mr. Brooschooft, the private clerk, of Mr. Jones; and the committee had thought it their duty to mark their sense of the impropriety of his conduct.

The Petition was then ordered to lie on the table.

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