§ MR. DELANY (Queen's Co., Ossory)
I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland whether he is aware that the hon. Member for South Mayo, and Mr. Denis Johnston, who are at present confined in Tullamore Prison, under Criminal Law Procedure (Ireland) Act sentences of four and five months respectively, are obliged to exercise in the ring with ordinary prisoners; and whether he will consider the advisability of relaxing the prison rules so as to permit Mr. O'Donnell and Mr. Johnston to take exercise apart from the common prisoners.
§ MR. WILLIAM MOORE (Antrim, N.)
Has the attention of the right hon. Gentleman been called to the published statement of the hon. Member for North Mayo (as an expert) to his constituents that the moral tone in these institutions is much superior to that in this House?
§ MR. WYNDHAM
I have not seen the observation, and in any case I am not prepared to draw invidious distinctions. The sentences of imprisonment without hard labour passed on the hon. Member for South Mayo and Mr. Johnston will respectively expire on the 16th instant and 14th May. After that they are condemned respectively to two months and three months as first-class misdemeanants. Under the first sentences they are, I am informed, exercised with prisoners belonging to the classes in 158 which they have been placed. Under the second sentences, they will not be exercised with other prisoners.
§ MR. DILLON (Mayo, E.)
Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that under the Coercion Act of 1887, those of us who were imprisoned were after a certain period exempted from taking exercise in company with ordinary criminals?
§ MR. WYNDHAM
There is perhaps some misunderstanding as to the term "ordinary criminals." Prisoners are, under the rules which have been laid on the Table of the House, divided into three categories. Those rules are being put in force in this case. I am not aware of any special exemption such as has been suggested by the hon. Member, but if the hon. Member will give me further details I will inquire.
§ MR. O'SHAUGHNESSY (Limerick, W.)
Why is it that the Member for South Mayo is compelled to associate with ordinary criminals?