HC Deb 08 June 1931 vol 253 cc622-3
76. Mr. DAY

asked the Attorney-General whether, in view of the recent decision of the Criminal Court of Appeal in the case of the Crown v. Wallace, who had been convicted of murder at Liverpool, he will say whether there is any fund by which the costs incurred by this defendant can be refunded; and will he consider the introduction of legislation whereby a successful defendant in criminal appeal cases may have his costs and out-of-pocket expenses refunded to him by the State?

77. Mr. PALMER

asked the Attorney-General if he has looked into the case of Herbert William Wallace, of Liverpool, and the circumstances in which the sentence of death was quashed by the Court of Appeal; and whether he will consider introducing legislation to secure a grant of money in view of the expenses incurred in defending the case, the 16 weeks' detention in prison, and the mental and physical suffering caused to this man?

The ATTORNEY - GENERAL (Sir William Jowitt)

The Criminal Appeal Act provides that on the hearing and determination of an appeal no costs shall be allowed to either side. Apart from the statutory assistance given to poor prisoners there is no fund from which a successful appellant may be reimbursed. I am by no means convinced that it would be in the public interest to introduce legislation granting the right of reimbursement in all cases, and it is obviously undesirable to differentiate between cases.