HC Deb 22 May 1912 vol 38 cc1931-2

I beg to ask the Home Secretary a question of which I have given him private notice—whether his attention has been called to the sentence of three months' imprisonment pronounced on 20th May, at the Central Criminal Court, upon Errico Malatesta for a criminal libel in which an opponent had been stated to be an Italian police spy; whether Malatesta was also recommended by the Common Sergeant for expulsion as an undesirable alien, and whether, in view of the witness borne by Prince Kropotkin and Prince Varlan Tscherkesoff to the high character of Malatesta, and the fact that no other offence than the above-mentioned libel was proved against Malatesta, he will withhold his consent to an order for expulsion.


I also beg to ask the right hon. Gentleman practically the same question.


I have received this morning from the Common Serjeant a recommendation for the expulsion of Errico Malatesta. I have not had time yet to consider the matter or make any inquiries. I shall proceed forthwith to inform myself fully of all the circumstances of the present case and of Malatesta's previous record, and shall consider the whole question most carefully before deciding whether or not I will act on the recommendation of the Court and make an expulsion order at the end of his sentence of imprisonment. At the present moment I am not in a position to express an opinion on the matter.


Will the Home Secretary also inquire into the allegation made in this morning's paper that a representative of the police had a private interview with the jury after they had retired from Court and before they gave their verdict?


Yes, I should consider that a most cardinal fact.


Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that after the jury had given their verdict a detective was allowed to make a damaging statement against this man, who has resided in this country for the last twelve years, with nothing against him?


I must have all the facts before me before coming to a decision.