HC Deb 22 June 1905 vol 147 c1336

I beg to ask the Secretary of State for War whether his attention has been called to the fact that Colonel Morgan's solicitors have threatened a libel action against the Daily News for commenting on the Report of Sir William Butler's Committee; and whether, in the event of actions being entered against that or any other newspaper, the War Office will give access to the documents necessary for the defence.


I am not at present prepared to discuss the probable attitude of the War Office in the event of a civil action being commenced.

MR. PIRIE (Aberdeen, N.)

Was the Secretary of State cognisant of the fact that Colonel Morgan proposed to bring this action against the Daily News before his solicitors communicated with the paper?


No, Sir, I was not.

MR. LABOUCHERE (Northampton)

Can the right hon. Gentleman say whether any application was made by The Times newspaper to obtain documents for the defence of The Times' action; was any similar application made by the Daily News; and, if so, what answer was given?


Yes, Sir, an application was made, and they were informed that all documents which were at the disposal of the plaintiff were at their disposal also, and were open to their inspection if they desired to see them.

MR. MARKHAM (Nottinghamshire, Mansfield)

Did the War Office suggest either directly or indirectly to Colonel Morgan that he ought to take proceedings against The Times and the Daily News?


I have already answered that Question. Action was taken independently by Colonel Morgan.