§ MR. OWEN (Cornwall, Launceston)
I beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if his attention has been called to the case of "Pridham v. Jennings," heard before the Magistrates at Stratton, North Cornwall, on Monday, the 12th instant, where the prisoner, accused of a trifling offence, elected to be tried summarily, and was so tried, pleading not guilty; the Bench disagreed, one Magistrate saying the accused ought to be discharged, and left the Bench followed by another Magistrate; the two remaining Magistrates committed the accused to take his trial at Bodmin Quarter Sessions, a long distance from Kilkhampton, where the accused and his witnesses live, and without railway communication; and did the Magistrates act within their powers by committing the accused after trying him with his consent under the summary jurisdiction procedure; and, if not, will he take steps in the matter?
§ ME. ASQUITH
I am in communication with the Justices, but have not yet received any reply. Perhaps my hon. Friend would postpone this question until Thursday, by which time I hope to have the necessary information.