HC Deb 02 March 1904 vol 130 c1474

To ask the Secretary of State for War whether his attention has been called to the case of Private Michael Sharkey, late of the 41st Regiment, who went through the Crimean War and was disabled by a wound in the left hand, being discharged on a pension of only 10d. a day; whether he is aware that, in consequence of absence in America, this pension was stopped from 1st October, 1863, to October, 1869; and, if so, whether, as he is now one of the few Crimean veterans surviving, this man's pension will be increased and some portion of the deferred pension granted to him by way of annuity.

(Answered by Mr. Secretary Arnold-Forster.) The hon. Member has apparently not been fully informed of the facts connected with this case. This man went to the United States of America without permission in 1863, and his pension was consequently forfeited under Article 1214 of the Pay Warrant for the period from the 1st October, 1863, to the 30th September, 1868. On appeal he was however, granted arrears from the 4th January, 1867, but further arrears were refused as he had been in prison for "grand larceny" from the 4th October, 1864, to the 3rd January, 1867, and he could not satisfactorily account for his absence for the period preceding his imprisonment. In July, 1902, in consideration of his having been wounded in the Crimea, he was awarded a special pension of 1s. 6d. a day. This pension, which he is now drawing, cannot be further increased,