§ MR. P. O'BRIEN (Monaghan, N.)
asked the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, Whether it is true that the tenants on the estate of Mr. Shirley, in the neighbourhood of Carrickmacross, County Monaghan, who were evicted last March, and who retook possession of their houses pending the hearing of their applications to the Land Court to have a fair rent fixed, have been recently visited by the police, and by them threatened that unless they quitted their homes within two days they would be proceeded against under the Criminal Law and Procedure (Ireland) Act; whether he can state upon whose authority and under what statute the police so acted; whether it was open to Mr. Shirley to remove these people under the ordinary law; and, whether, in view of the fact that their applications to have 1343 a fair rent fixed are listed for hearing at the next sitting of the Land Court in County Monaghan, he will order the police to suspend their action?
THE PARLIAMENTARY UNDER SECRETARY (Colonel KING-HARMAN) () (who replied) Kent, Isle of Thanet
said: The Constabulary Authorities report that 14 tenants on the Shirley estate evicted last September, December, and March have been noticed by the police to leave their houses and farms, where possession has been unlawfully re-taken, within the last few days, and in some cases, when found in the houses, they were informed that if they did not leave, they would be prosecuted under the Statute quoted. These instructions were carried out by order of the Divisional Magistrate. Mr. Shirley might have taken proceedings to recover the premises otherwise than by means of the recent Statute. None of these tenants have served notice to have a fair rent fixed; and in the case of seven of them the statutable period for doing so appears to have expired.