HC Deb 26 April 1883 vol 278 c1138

asked the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, If he has seen the following statement in the "Times" of the 23rd April, with reference to crime in the county Wicklow:— The County Court Judge, Mr. Darley, was presented with a pair of white gloves in the Court House of Wicklow yesterday, there being no criminal charges to be brought before him. He complimented the county on its peaceful state; if he has seen a report of the proceedings at Baltinglass Quarter Sessions, the other side of the county, on the previous Monday, in which the same Judge, addressing the Grand Jury, said— There is but one case to go before you, and that a very trivial one, for stealing a bottle of porter. I am sorry that the magistrates could not deal with this case, and thus save twenty-three gentlemen the trouble and inconvenience of attending here; whether the Grand Jury found "No Bill;" and, whether he can state if a stipendiary magistrate was present on the Bench when this extraordinary case was returned for trial to Quarter Sessions?


Sir, the circumstances are as stated in this Question. In the one case, which was for trial at the Quarter Sessions, the accused, when before the magistrate, had elected, as he was legally entitled to do, to be tried before a jury, and therefore the magistrates had no option but to send the case forward. There was no Resident Magistrate present. There does not seem to be the slightest reason to suppose that the remarks of the learned County Court Judge were intended as any reflection on the action of the magistrates.