HC Deb 08 November 1888 vol 330 cc641-2
MR. NOLAN (Louth, N.)

asked the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, whether his attention has been called to the case of J. M. Johnson, M. J. Carroll, and Henry Cooper, who on the 1st of August last were tried in the town of Dundalk, in the County of Louth, Ireland, on a charge of using "violence and intimidation" to Mr. Emerson on the 20th of June last; whether the report of the trial is correct in stating that the offence consisted of "booing" Mr. Emerson, and that Mr. Emerson swore at the trial that the "booing" only lasted a few minutes, and that he was not frightened by it; and, whether Mr. J, M. Johnson was sentenced to six weeks' imprisonment, which he is now undergoing, while Messrs. Carroll and Cooper were released on their own recognizances; and, if so, how does he account for the distinction made in dealing with persons charged with the same offence at the same time and in the same place. At the same time he wished to ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department a Question of which he had given Notice—namely, What had been done in the case of the men who had hooted and pelted the ex-Prime Minister at Dover last December?


The latter Question was struck off the Paper by my direction.


, in reply, said: I am informed that the three defendants named were charged with intimidation, and it was proved in the case of Johnson, who was the ringleader, that the intimidation consisted not only in "booing," but in inciting a hostile and excited crowd against the gentleman, who was a stranger to the place. Mr. Emerson did state that he was not frightened; but the clerk who accompanied him swore he himself was much frightened, and apprehended an attack upon Mr. Emerson. Johnson, when summoned in July for the offence, absconded, and the cases had to be adjourned. At the adjourned hearing Carroll and Cooper having pleaded "guilty," and it being proved that they did not interfere until urged on by Johnson, they were dealt with under the First Offenders Act, and discharged on their recognizances to come up for judgment when called upon. Johnson was sentenced to six weeks' imprisonment, which was confirmed on appeal by the County Court Judge.


asked if the right hon. Gentleman had read the evidence given at the trial, seeing that his answer was not at all borne out by that evidence?


asked that Notice should be given of any further Questions on the matter.


said, he should put a further Question at the earliest opportunity.