§ MR. PICTON (Leicester)
asked the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, Whether on inquiry he finds it is a fact that Mrs. Ryan, a prisoner in Limerick Gaol for contempt, was at the time of her arrest last June nursing an unweaned infant, and was separated from it; and, whether, considering the length of her imprisonment and the needs of several young children, he will ascertain whether leniency can be shown in this case?
§ THE PARLIAMENTARY UNDER SECRETARY (Colonel KING-HARMAN) (Kent, Isle of Thanet)
(who replied) said: I understand that at the time of Mrs. Ryan's arrest her youngest child was 12 months old, and was left in charge of an adult sister. It is, of course, still open to the Ryans to come to a reasonable settlement with the Court, in which case I have no doubt the Court is quite prepared to exercise its clemency. As I have already explained, the Executive Government have no power to interfere.
§ MR. PICTON
I would be very much obliged if the right hon. and gallant Gentleman would say whether or not Mrs. Ryan was forcibly separated from this child, which was scarcely a month old?
§ COLONEL KING-HARMAN
I think the child must have been more than a month old, because her husband was in prison for 12 months before.
§ MR. MURPHY (Dublin, St. Patrick's)
Does the right hon. and gallant Gentleman say that the Lord Lieutenant has no power to interfere?
§ MR. PICTON
said: In consequence of the unsympathetic answer of the right hon. and gallant Gentleman, I beg to give Notice that I shall take the earliest possible opportunity of calling attention to the harsh treatment of Mrs. Ryan.