§ MR. J. KEIR HARDIE
I beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether his attention has been drawn to the unusual action of a court of Crewe magistrates in holding a court in the evening of the 1st of September, 1894, from 8 p.m. to 11.20 p.m., to hear a charge against a certain Dr. Lawton of criminal assault, when the defendant was acquitted upon his own unsupported evidence; and whether he will cause an inquiry to be made into the whole circumstances of the case?
§ MR. ASQUITH
Dr. Lawton was, I am informed, on his way to America with his family when arrested at Liverpool, and a special court was summoned in the evening so as to enable him, if acquitted, to catch his ship and join his family. There is no reason for supposing the magistrates acted with any bias or unfairness. In any case, the matter is not one in which I could interfere, since the defendant was acquitted.