HC Deb 11 February 1904 vol 129 cc1034-5
MR. SLOAN (Belfast, S.)

I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland whether, in view of the fact that Royal Irish Constabulary courts of inquiry are not open to the Press, and that the Inspector-General published in a Dublin paper a version of the trial of Sergeant Williamson, and refused to the solicitor for the defence copies of the depositions made by the witnesses, he will arrange, before the Royal Irish Constabulary Estimates come up, that the evidence shall be made available for Members; and whether, seeing that the officers who tried the accused were, after their first finding, summoned to the Castle by the Inspector-General, and were interviewed by him there, he will state the details of the findings.


The court of inquiry held in the present case was a Departmental one and the accused, with his legal advisers, was present throughout the proceedings. There is no precedent for publishing a report of the proceedings in the manner suggested, and I see no reason for departing from the customary practice on the present occasion. The officers constituting the Court were not summoned to an interview with the Inspector-General. The accused was found guilty of six charges of fraudulently and deceitfully altering figures in public documents.