HC Deb 15 March 1917 vol 91 c1274
76. Mr. JOWETT

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether his attention has been called to the divergence between the sentences inflicted by courts-martial at different barracks on conscientious objectors, the usual sentence at Lichfield Barracks, for instance, being fifty-six days, whilst at Hugely Barracks a sentence of two years is usually inflicted; and if he can see his way to commute the longer sentences, seeing that the offences are of the same character?

The UNDER-SECRETARY of STATE for WAR (Mr. Macpherson)

My right hon. Friend has asked me to reply. The sentences of all courts-martial are reviewed by the various intermediary authorities through whom the proceedings pass. If the sentence awarded has not been regulated under the principles indicated in paragraph 583 of the King's Regulations, action in this regard is taken by the Army Council when the proceedings are finally reviewed in this Department. I think it is well known to this House that this procedure has been carried out ever since the question of the disposal of conscientious objectors was first dealt with by the War Office.