§ MR. W. L. BRIGHT (Stoke-upon-Trent)
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department, Whether the authorities have any record of blackmailing on the part of the police of the Metropolis; and, whether on certain occasions it has been found necessary to remove police constables in considerable quantities from, the West End to the East End of London, where the opportunities for the practice are less frequent?
§ THE SECRETARY OF STATE (Mr. MATTHEWS) (Birmingham, E.)
I am informed by the Chief Commissioner of Police that the only cases he has been able at present to find recorded against police constables, with reference to unfortunate women, are some half-a-dozen cases since 1882. I will show the hon. Member the details of those cases if he wishes it. During the last three years 6,240 unfortunates have been charged in the B, C, and E Divisions. In the investigation of so many cases, it seems probable that if any system of blackmailing had existed it would have been disclosed, although the existence of isolated cases is quite possible. About 19 years ago charges of black-mailing were brought against the police; but since that time the Chief Commissioner cannot ascertain that it has ever been found necessary to remove police constables in considerable quantities from the West End to the East End of London on this account, or that any charge of this nature has been proved except in isolated cases.
§ MR. ESSLEMONT (Aberdeen, E.)
Is any notice to be taken of the statement made in the House by an hon. Member as regards 30 such cases?