HC Deb 14 August 1883 vol 283 cc457-8

asked the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, Why Bryan Grant, of Castlebayney, county Monaghan, is continually watched and followed all day by a policeman; whether this has gone on now for fifteen months; whether it is the fact that the policeman never loses sight of Grant, and stands over him while he is at his work; whether a constable was dismissed or punished for once losing sight of him; if he is aware that Grant can now hardly get work at his trade because of the suspicions this practice arouses against him; can he state what Grant has done to deserve the course taken by the police, or what justification there is for it; and, will he inquire whether Grant is a respectable artizan who has never in his life been charged with the smallest offence?


Sir, the man referred to is believed to be a dangerous member of a secret society, and some watch on his movements is considered necessary in the public interests. It is not a fact that a constable stands over him while at work, or that a constable was dismissed for losing sight of him. A constable was removed for going off his beat and neglecting the instructions which he had to look after Grant. It is not the fact that Grant cannot get work. I am informed that he can get plenty of work, and is engaged daily at his trade. I gave special directions some months ago that nothing should be done which would prevent him from getting employment, and these directions are complied with. Except for his connection with secret societies, there is nothing against Grant.


asked, was it not a fact that the only evidence the Government had against this man was that Duffy, the informer, wrote his name in a book with those of 200 or 300 others? The man was perfectly harmless.

[No reply.]