§ MR. W. REDMOND (Fermanagh, N.)
(for Mr. J. E. REDMOND) (Wexford, N.) asked the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, Whether he can state the reasons for the recent summary dismissal of Constable John S. Deans, who had served seven years and nine months in the Royal Irish Constabulary in County Clare, and for a period of three years had held confidential positions in the offices of District Inspectors Kidd, Wynne, and Teddal to the satisfaction of these officers; whether, on the 18th of March last, Constable Deans was summoned to the County Inspector's office in the police barrack at Ennis, and questioned as to the fact that he had given evidence for the defence in the prosecution of the hon. Member for East Clare (Mr. Cox) under the Criminal Law and Procedure (Ireland) Act; whether such evidence was of a purely technical character as to the posting of public notices in police huts; whether County Inspector Heard informed him that he had received a letter from Colonel Turner on the subject, and that he was now obliged to 90 report to headquarters the fact of his (Constable Deans) having given such evidence on behalf of the hon. Member for East Clare; and, whether, without any further warning and without any other reasons having been assigned, Constable Deans was within a week afterwards summarily dismissed from the Royal Irish Constabularly?
§ THE CHIEF SECRETARY (Mr. A. J. BALFOUR) (Manchester, E.)
The County Inspector of Constabulary reports that he did not question the man as to the fact alleged; that he did not inform him that he had a letter from Colonel Turner; nor did he say that he would have to report to headquarters the fact of his having given the evidence referred to. No special reason was assigned on the discharge of this man other than that his services were no longer required.
§ MR. COX (Clare, E.)
If this man makes an affidavit before a magistrate as to the exact nature of the conversation that did take place, will the right hon. Gentleman take any further action in the matter?
§ MR. W. REDMOND
May I ask the right hon. Gentleman how it was that the Constabulary Authorities in Ireland only arrived at the conclusion that this man was unfit for service directly after he gave evidence for the hon. Member for East Clare?
§ MR. W. REDMOND
My Question is, whether, as a matter of fact, this man was not dismissed because he gave evidence in favour of the hon. Member for East Clare at his trial, and that nothing else has been alleged against him?