§ Mr. J. F. X. O'BRIEN (Mayo, S.)
asked the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, Whether it is a fact that a marquee kept by Mr. Andrew Grogan, of Claremorris, on the fair ground at Hollymount, in the County of Mayo, on the 16th ultimo, was, about 7.30 a.m. on that day, entered by the local sergeant of the Royal Irish Constabulary, who pronounced Mr. Grogan's licence to be illegal, although his authorization was in due form, and acknowledged by the supervisor of Excise in the district; whether the sergeant then threatened Mr. Grogan with prosecution, and threatened likewise all who might patronize Mr. Grogan's marquee that day; whether Mr. Grogan was twice before prosecuted on like pretext, the charge each time being dismissed; and is there any protection for Mr. Grogan against a repetition of such interference?
§ THE CHIEF SECRETARY (Mr. A. J. BALFOUR) (Manchester, E.)
, in reply, said, the Inspector General of Constabulary reported that the local officer did warn Grogan on the occasion in question that his licence was illegal, inasmuch as it was not signed by one of the Justices usually acting at Petty Sessions in the district, as required by law. The sergeant did tell Grogan that he was liable to be prosecuted; but he did not threaten anyone who might patronize the marquee. Mr. Grogan could protect himself by fulfilling the requirements of the law.
§ COLONEL NOLAN (Galway, N.)
asked, were the police to judge whether the magistrate who signed the licence was a magistrate within the Petty Sessions Court?
§ MR. A. J. BALFOUR
said, of course the person to decide that question was the Judge before whom the case came.
§ COLONEL NOLAN
said, what he wanted to know was, whether the police could prevent people going into the marquee when the question of the jurisdiction of the magistrate who signed the licence was undecided?