§ MR. CUNINGHAME GRAHAM
I beg to ask the First Lord of the Treasury if it is true that in 1886–7 a large sum of money voted by Parliament under Vote 19, for pensions and compensations to retired officers, was returned to the Treasury, as an unexpended balance, by the War Office; and whether he is prepared, as an act of grace and under the special circumstances under which the trial of "Mitchell v. Regina" took place, to grant as an act of grace to the suppliant, in consideration of his services of over 31 years in the corps of Royal Engineers, and the services of his father, the late John Wray Mitchell, Royal Artillery, for a longer period, some grant of money as an equivalent for loss sustained by early retirement from the 725 Army, in consequence of the operation of new and enforced rules of retirement which did not govern the Army when he entered it?
§ THE FIRST LORD OF THE TREASURY (Mr. W. H. SMITH,) Strand, Westminster
The surplus of Vote 19 for 1886–7 was surrendered to the Exchequer according to law, and is no longer at the disposal of Her Majesty's Government. I am informed that it is not the intention of the War Office to ask for any further compensation for Colonel Mitchell.
§ MR. C. GRAHAM
May I ask whether, if the suppliant in "Mitchell v. Regina" is made to pay the taxed costs of the Crown on the action under petition of right, Messrs. Hare and Co., the agents to the Solicitor to the Treasury, would only get one-half the allowed fees, and the other half go into the Exchequer receipts of the Crown; and whether this arrangement is in contravention of paragraph 32 of the Solicitors Act, 1843.
§ MR. W. H. SMITH
The suppliant has been relieved from paying the costs of the Crown in this case. The arrangement with Messrs. Hare is an old one, which has worked well, and the legal point raised by the hon. Member is not one with which I am competent to deal.