§ MR. HEALY
asked the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, Whether his attention has been called to the appeals of three tenants (Patrick Hodnett, John Driscoll, and William Hodnett), which were heard by the County Court Judge at Bantry, county Cork, on the 9th of July, whose applications for the benefit of the Arrears' Act had been dismissed by the Investigator; whether this dismissal was because of the non-payment of the required year's rent before 30th November; whether, notwithstanding this, the tenants produced in the Appeal Court three re- 138 ceipts for the statutory year's rent, which made it appear under the hand of the landlord that such rent had been paid on the 30th November; whether, on being questioned by the judge as to the real date of such payment, the tenants declared that it had in fact been made within the past two months; whether the judge thereupon ordered the receipts to be impounded with a view to the landlord being prosecuted; whether the landlord in question is the collector of general rates for the city of Dublin; whether the offence of antedating receipts to defraud the State under the Arrears' Act subjects the landlord to imprisonment and fine; whether the Government will cause a prosecution to be instituted against the landlord; and, whether, if the offender be a Government official, he will any longer be continued in the service of the Crown?
§ MR. TREVELYAN
I believe that the facts in reference to this matter are stated with substantial accuracy in the Question, except as to the fifth paragraph. The Judge did not refer to a prosecution; but he directed the Clerk of the Peace to send the receipts to the Land Commissioners, which he has done. The Land Commission is at present engaged in investigating the case, and the Government await the result of their inquiry. Meanwhile, it would be obviously improper to prejudge a matter which possibly may become the subject of legal investigation hereafter.
§ MR. TREVELYAN
Yes. I saw the letter. It was rather difficult to understand; but, undoubtedly, in so far as it impugned the accuracy of the hon. Member's Question, it was inaccurate.