§ MR. D. MACALEESE (Monaghan, N.)
I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland if his attention has been drawn to a case at the Strabane Equity Sessions on Friday, 9th April, where a civil bill officer, named Thomas K. Howe, brought an action against Mrs. Margaret Murphy, a widow, to compel specific performance of an agreement for the sale of a farm at a place called Woodend; is he aware that it was disclosed in evidence that the bailiff Howe, accompanied by a clerk, took to the defendant an agreement ready drawn, which he compelled her to sign, although she begged for time to consult her solicitor; and that the Judge, Sir Francis Brady, Q.C., in dismissing the case with costs, stated that Howe had taken the defendant at a disadvantage, and had refused to allow her to have legal advice; and also that the solicitor had not taken a wise course in acting in the case for both parties; and will he call the attention of the Lord Chancellor to the conduct of Mr. Howe as a civil bill officer?
§ MR. GERALD BALFOUR
Civil bill officers are under the control, not of the Lord Chancellor, but of the County Court Judges. A copy of the Question of the hon. Member has been referred to the learned Judge, Sir Francis Brady.