HC Deb 16 July 1879 vol 248 cc554-5

gave Notice that, to-morrow, he would ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, Whether, considering the evidence that has been brought to his notice since the conviction of the claimant to the Tichborne estates in February 1874, and the fact that, according to usage, the sentence passed upon him for swearing that he was not Arthur Orton would expire on the 10th of August next; considering, also, the grave legal doubts that the Court had power to give more than one sentence for a supposed perjury, and that the jury had made certain statements as to the circumstances under which they found their verdict, he will advise Her Majesty to liberate the prisoner on the 10th of August next; and, if not, whether he will forthwith investigate the numerous matters to which his attention has been called in support of the identity of the claimant with Roger Tichborne; whether it was true that Her Majesty's Ministers, or any of them, advised the Queen to send a telegram of sympathy to Lady Radcliffe, congratulating her upon the result of the trial; and whether, as a matter of fact, the trial has not cost the country more than a quarter of a million of money?


I have to point out to the hon. Member that it appears to me that parts of his Notice involve matters of argument, and, so far, it is irregular. I am not prepared at this moment to state in what shape the Question ought to be put.


When my attention was called to this objection by one of the Clerks of the House I most carefully considered the Question, and did what I could to illuminate my mind from Sir Erskine May's work; but I have been unable to find anything contrary to the Rules of the House in my Question.