HC Deb 02 May 1928 vol 216 cc1687-8

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether his attention has been drawn to the arrest of the Hull steam trawler "Tervani" by the Icelandic authorities for the offence of illegal trawling alleged to have been committed in August, 1926; whether he is aware that in the interval no warning was given to the skipper that any charge was to be preferred against him, although he has been fishing continuously in the vicinity ever since August, 1926, and that he has been thereby prejudiced in preparing his defence; and whether, under the circumstances, His Majesty's Government will make representations to the Icelandic Government pointing out the hardship involved to the skipper and owners of the "Tervani" by their procedure and asking them to withdraw the charge in this case?

The SECRETARY of STATE for FOREIGN AFFAIRS (Sir Austen Chamberlain)

The answer to all three parts of the question is in the affirmative.


Will the right hon. Gentleman consider the desirability of impressing upon the Icelandic authorities that they should have a time limit, as every other country in existence has?


These repeated incidents do give cause for considerable anxiety. I will consider my hon. Friend's suggestion, but I prefer not to give a definite reply.

Lieut.-Commander KENWORTHY

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that this is not like the other cases we have had of alleged illegal trawling? The matter of moment is that a long interval has been allowed to elapse, and the poor man cannot get witnesses for the defence.


I am well aware of that, and it is for that reason that we have made representations.

Lieut.-Commander KENWORTHY

On those terms?

Sir A. CHAMBERLAIN indicated assent.

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