HC Deb 13 February 1891 vol 350 c603
MR. ASHER (Elgin, &c.)

I beg to ask the Secretary of State for War whether it is the case that Sergeant John Mason, of Peterhead, formerly attached to the third Volunteer Battalion Gordon Highlanders (a Volunteer of 22 years' standing) was in 1886 dismissed from the Service in consequence of certain charges made against him by his Commanding Officer; whether it is the case that these charges were not communicated to Sergeant Mason before his dismissal, and he had no opportunity of defending himself against them. Whether an application by Sergeant Mason to the War Office to order an inquiry, with a view to affording him an opportunity of proving his innocence of the alleged charges, was refused; and, whether his dismissal, in such circumstances, and the refusal of all inquiry, are in accordance with Military law?


Sergeant Mason was dismissed from the Volunteers under orders from the right hon. Gentleman the Member for the Stirling Boroughs, then Secretary of State for War, for having brought frivolous, vexatious, and false reports against his commanding officer. This was the direct result of Sergeant Mason's own communication to the War Office. The present First Lord of the Treasury, when Secretary of State for War subsequently allowed the case to be re-opened, and it was then re-examined. Sergeant Mason, whose statement was then received, brought forward no circumstance which had not been already fully considered. His dismissal was in accordance with Military law, and I must altogether decline to re-open the case.