§ MR. ALDEN (Middlesex, Tottenham)
I beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether, under the probation of Young Offenders Act, he can empower the probation officers to receive fines by instalments; whether he will recommend Courts of Summary Jurisdiction to adopt this course; whether, under part 3 of Clause 1 of the Probation Act, the words compensation for loss may be taken to include restitution of money stolen; and, if so, whether the services of probation officers can be utilised in collecting the same during the time the offender may be on probation.
§ THE SECRETARY OF STATE FOR THE HOME DEPARTMENT (Mr. GLADSTONE,) Leeds, W.
Where the Justices deal with an offender under the Probation of Offenders Act, there is no conviction, and consequently there can be no fine. The Justices may, however, order the offender to pay compensation for loss, which I am advised includes restitution of money stolen; and by Section 7 of the Summary Jurisdiction Act, 1879, the Justices may direct the payment to be made by instalments. It is within the powers of the Justices under that section to direct the instalments to be paid to the probation officer, and there may be cases where they might properly be required to do so; but there are officers attached to the Courts whose duty it is to receive sums which the Court orders to be paid, and in cases under the Probation Act I think it would be undesirable to do anything which would make the offender look on the probation officer as a collector of debts rather than as his friend and adviser.