HC Deb 11 November 1920 vol 134 cc1370-2
Lieut.-Commander KENWORTHY

(by Private Notice) asked the Chief Secretary for Ireland whether the hon. Member for East Leyton has been arrested within the precincts of Trinity College, Dublin; what he is charged with; whether the alleged offence was committed in England or in Ireland; under what powers has he been arrested; will he be brought to trial in Ireland or in England, and, if in Ireland, before what sort of court?


The hon. Member for East Leyton was arrested in Trinity College, Dublin, last evening under the authority of the Defence of the Realm Regulation No. 55 in consequence of instructions received from the Director of Public Prosecutions. He was brought over to London last night. I must refer my hon. Friend to the Secretary of State for Home Affairs for information as to the charge and the place of trial.


May I ask if the Government will consider the advisability of not proceeding with the prosecution, which will merely give advertisement to one who has been seeking to be made a martyr for a considerable time, and who is therefore not deserving of it?

Lieut.-Colonel CROFT

Will the right hon. Gentleman undertake that the law is not varied, but that it is carried out, whoever the, subject concerned?


Was the hon. Member arrested for delivering a speech about hanging people from lamp-posts, and was not the same speech delivered by the Leader of the House against the Prime Minister on one occasion?


Is it not a fact that among the other incriminating documents found in the hon. Member's flat was a Coalition Coupon signed by the Prime Minister and the Leader of the House?

Viscount CURZON

Is it not a fact that the hon. Member for East Leyton has threatened all the Curzons with the lamp-post or the wall?


I quite agree with the right hon. Member for Derby that it is well at times to treat irresponsible speeches with contempt. But sometimes they go too far, and that was the case with the hon. Member for East Leyton last Sunday night at the Albert Hall. The charge arises out of that speech, and the hon. Member will be tried in the ordinary way before a London police magistrate.


Does the right hon. Gentleman so regard the speech delivered by the Secretary of State for War in the City of London last week—


It was not against the Crown.


Does the right hon. Gentleman so regard the speech delivered by the Secretary for War in the City last week, in which he referred to the Labour movement of this country as rascals and rapscallions?


May I ask why the hon. Member for East Leyton was not arrested in England, and why this ancient historic university should have been insulted in the way it has been by having an English Member arrested there?


I do not know of any such speech as that referred to by the hon. Member for Dartford (Mr. Mills). I may say in reply to the hon. Member for Waterford (Captain Redmond) that I did not ask the hon. Member for East Leyton to go to Trinity College.


But why was he not arrested in England?


Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that the meeting which this terrible person was to address was to be presided over by Mr. Justice Samuels, the late Attorney-General for Ireland under the Coalition Government; whether Mr. Justice Samuels knew of the speech to be delivered by the hon. Gentleman, whether the authorities of the College knew about the speech, and why was the hon. Member for East Leyton not arrested here and not allowed to leave this country? Is the right hon. Gentleman also aware that there is the deepest resentment among the Unionists, who constitute the overwhelming body of students in Trinity College, at this historic Society having been insulted by the disgraceful proceedings of this character?


The hon. Member must give notice of some of these questions.

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