HC Deb 22 July 1924 vol 176 cc1098-9
22. Brigadier-General SPEARS

asked the Secretary of State for War whether soldiers convicted of military offences are marched through the streets and conveyed in public conveyances in handcuffs?


Soldiers under escort are only handcuffed when necessary for their safe custody. When handcuffed they are ordinarily, whether in uniform or plain clothes, taken through the streets in a special covered conveyance, such as an ambulance wagon or a cab. They are not allowed to be marched through the streets unless such a course is absolutely unavoidable. The rule on the subject is explicitly laid down in paragraph 706 of the King's Regulations.

Brigadier-General SPEARS

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that soldiers handcuffed to an escort have, in the past few days, been marched through London and have been seen to the Tubes?


I am not aware of any such incident. I shall be obliged to the hon. Gentleman if he will give me particulars.


Is it the general custom or a rare event for service men to be taken about handcuffed in this manner?


I take it that the King's Regulations explicitly lay down the procedure, and I should say such an occurrence is rare. The fact that one particular instance has drawn attention is proof of that.