HC Deb 03 May 1911 vol 25 cc419-20

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether, in view of the fact that Elizabeth Timmins was sentenced by the Recorder at Dudley Quarter Sessions, on Monday, 24th April, to three weeks' imprisonment as an incorrigible rogue and that she was discharged on Wednesday 26th, by order of the Home Office, he will say whether, before ordering the release of this woman, he communicated with and asked for the views of the judge who passed the sentence?

The SECRETARY of STATE for the HOME DEPARTMENT (Mr. Churchill)

Neither I nor any one in the Home Office had heard of this case until the hon. Member' s question appeared on the Paper. I have now made inquiry, and find that the Governor released the prisoner because she had, in his opinion, earned her discharge under Section 8 of the Prison Act, 1898. Under that Section a prisoner can by good conduct and industry earn a remission of one-sixth of his sentence; and in this case, the Governor, in calculating the remission, added to the sentence of twenty-one days a period of ninety-eight days during which the woman was in prison waiting sentence, with the result that she was released on 26th April, I doubt if the Governor's reading of the law is right, but I will look further into the matter.