HC Deb 06 May 1915 vol 71 cc1238-9
10. Mr. BOOTH

asked the hon. Member for the Saffron Walden Division, as representing the First Commissioner of Works, if Siegfried Hirschmann is still a director of the Union Cable Company and where he is residing; does he receive fees; and what steps the Office of Works has taken to secure that no part of the profit on the cable contract given to this German firm reaches Siegfried Hirschmann?

Mr. BECK (Lord of the Treasury)

Mr. Hirschmann, so far as is known, is still a director. His place of residence is not known to the First Commissioner. He is receiving no fees. Before the contract was made the First Commissioner ascertained that the Board of Trade had appointed a supervisor under the Trading with the Enemy Amendment Act, 1914, which with other Acts and Proclamations precludes payment of money to or for the benefit of an enemy.


Will the Office of Works not try to find out where this man does live, in view of the importance of an enemy getting knowledge of our cable contracts?


I think my hon. Friend rather misunderstands the situation. The Office of Works has really no responsibility in this particular matter beyond giving the contract to the firm most suitable to carry it out. All Regulations regarding enemy aliens are done under the Trading with the Enemy Act and by a Board of Trade official.