HC Deb 30 June 1898 vol 60 cc640-1
MR. LEUTY (Leeds, E.)

I beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether his attention has been drawn to a system of fraud largely perpetrated by means of advertising a very simple puzzle within the power of everyone to solve, followed by an intimation through the post to all who reply that the competitor has succeeded in winning the prize, but introducing for the first time some new condition involving the payment of a small sum of one or two shillings, the payment of which brings, not the prize advertised, but an intimation that perhaps 17,000 people have all entitled themselves to the prize, a share of which, amounting perhaps to one half-penny, is enclosed to the competitor along with this last communication; and if he would consider how such frauds can be prevented with or without special legislation, or, if that is not possible, can he take any steps with a view of warning the public?


Yes, my attention has been drawn to the practice, but hitherto it has not been found possible to institute proceedings. The police have issued a public warning through the press against such advertisements; beyond that I hardly see what can be done.