HC Deb 01 May 1902 vol 107 cc444-5

I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland whether he is aware of the existence in the city of Belfast of an organised body of Orangemen known as the Bogey Clan, whose members march through the streets and attempt to murder Roman Catholic citizens; whether he is aware that one of the local resident magistrates, himself a Protestant, has described the conduct of these men as the worst he ever heard of; and whether, in view of these and of previous disturbances in the streets of Belfast, it is intended to proclaim that city under the Criminal Law and Procedure (Ireland) Act.


A gang of roughs,. estimated to number twenty-four or twenty-five, recently committed a murderous assault on a boy, who is a Roman Catholic. Twenty-one of the gang have been arrested. The resident magistrate described their conduct in the terms stated at the end of the Question. There is absolutely no foundation for the statement that the members of the gang belong to the Orange Society. Persons who break the law in Belfast are brought to justice under the ordinary law, and receive exemplary punishment. It is not intended, therefore, nor has it ever been considered necessary, to utilise the summary jurisdiction clauses of the Crimes Act in that part of Ireland.


May I ask how the right hon. Gentleman knows that these roughs did not belong to the Orange Society?


The Question on the Paper has been fully answered. The hon. Member must not proceed to argue it.