HC Deb 27 April 1849 vol 104 c933

said, it would be in the recollection of the House that some time ago the Bombay steamer, which had been hired or purchased by the Provisional Government of Sicily, was seized in this country. An idea was prevalent that great efforts were making by the agents of the insurgent Government to release this steamer. He wished to ask the noble, Lord at the head of the Government whether they bad any intention to assist the agents of that Government in these proceedings of theirs, or whether it was the intention of the Government to allow the case to be adjudicated upon by the courts of law in the usual way?


said, that there had been reason to believe that the Bombay steamer bad come under the provisions of the Foreign Enlistment Act, and accordingly the Board of Admiralty detained the vessel. The owners of the vessel made representations, stating that there was no legal reason for detaining the steamer. The opinion of the law officers of the Crown was then asked, but it had not yet been delivered. If it should prove that there were no legal grounds for detaining the vessel, the Government would not act contrary to law in detaining it; but if, on the contrary, the seizure should prove lawful, the Government would act accordingly.

Subject at an end.