HC Deb 28 February 1906 vol 152 cc1118-9
MR. H. H. MARKS (Kent, Thanet)

To ask the Secretary to the Treasury whether he is aware that some 5 cwt. of saccharine, of the value of about £700, consigned to a London firm under a false declaration as to its description and landed from an Ostend mail steamer at Dover, was recently seized by the Customs authorities at Dover, taken out into the bay, and poured into the sea; and whether he will consider the advisability of securing that in future goods so seized, instead of being thrown away, should be sold and the proceeds applied to some useful public purpose.

(Answered by Mr. McKenna.) The Question appears to refer to four drums containing chemical substances imported at Dover during February, 1905. The goods in question were not smuggled, but were abandoned by the importer apparently because they were found to be liable to the saccharine duty. Owing to chemical action while the goods were in store the tins corroded and unhealthy fumes were given off, and, as the sanitary authorities objected, the goods had to be destroyed. I may add that confiscated goods are periodically sold by auction by the Customs Department, and that no goods are destroyed unless they are worthless or unsaleable.