§ MR. MACNEILL (Donegal, South)
I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, whether he is aware that a woman named Theresa Brady, who pleaded guilty to the theft of three chickens, and had never been 330 charged with any other offence, was sentenced by the chief police magistrate in Dublin to five months' imprisonment with hard labour, and is now undergoing that sentence; will he explain why the petition to the Lord Lieutenant, praying her release or the abridgement of her sentence, signed by many clergymen and influential gentlemen in Dublin, and forwarded more than a month ago by her husband, a patient in the Incurable Hospital suffering from a hopeless disease, was refused; and, whether, having regard to the fact that a considerable portion of this sentence has now been endured and to the character of the offence, a pardon will now be granted to this woman?
§ MR. GERALD BALFOUR
The facts are generally as stated in the first paragraph, except that the woman was convicted also of the offence of illegal possession of other articles, and was sentenced to four, not five, months' imprisonment with hard labour. The Memorial referred to in the second paragraph received the careful consideration of the Lord Lieutenant early last month and His Excellency decided, after full inquiry into all the circumstances, that no sufficient grounds were shown for a special remission of sentence at that time. It would be contrary to the invariable practice to state the grounds on which the decision of the Lord Lieutenant in such cases is based.
§ MR. MACNEILL
Is the right honourable Gentleman aware that this woman was sentenced by the Court first to two months' imprisonment for stealing the chickens, and then to another two months' hard labour for being in illegal possession of them?