HC Deb 07 February 1842 vol 60 c102
Mr. John O'Connell,

seeing the noble Lord, the Secretary for Ireland in his place, wished to ask whether he had read the statement of the criminal Delahunt, that he swore "against Cooney and his wife, in the hopes t,f having pay at the Castle," and also," swore against the men for the assault on Mr. Cradock for the same motive, and without knowing one of them." He asked whether the noble Lord's attention had been called to that statement, and whether there was to b any alteration in a system of employing informers, against which a very strong feeling existed in Ireland?

Lord Eliot,

too much feared that the crime of Delahunt was partly attributable to the system which had been referred to. But, consistently with the present state of Ireland, he could not hold out any hope that the practice would be discontinued, They all knew how difficult it was to procure evidence in criminal cases in Ireland, and if the witnesses were not protected from injury, that difficulty would be increaserd. The subject should, however, be brought again under the consideration of persons competent to decide. At present, he could hold out no hope of of a change.