§ 10 and 11. Mr. PIKE
asked the Home Secretary (1) whether he is aware that past subscribers to the Irish Free State Hospital Sweepstakes have been circularised by the promoters to the effect that the Betting and Lotteries Act does not apply to syndicates or clubs; that tickets may be applied for and received up to any number desired; and what action it is intended to take in respect to tickets or counterfoils despatched to syndicates or clubs established in this country pursuant to the provisions of this circular;
(2) whether he has considered the circular letter of which a copy has been sent to him, reference Private S/2, signed by the managing director of the Dublin Hospitals Trust, Limited; and what steps it is proposed to take to prevent persons resident in the Irish Free State from obtaining moneys from persons in this country under conditions representative of a false interpretation of the Betting and Lotteries Act, 1934?
§ Sir J. GILMOUR
I am much obliged to my hon. Friend for sending to me a copy of the circular letter referred to. As I have frequently explained, the use of the post cannot be allowed for the transmission of lottery matter, but it would not be in the public interest to make any detailed statement of the measures taken by the authorities for the purpose of preventing the distribution in this country of tickets in the Irish Hospital Trust sweepstakes.
§ Mr. PIKE
Is the Home Secretary aware that last night in the City of 535 Belfast £25,000 worth of tickets were held up pending instructions from London, and that they were released on the ground that there was no reason and no power whatever to hold them? Can the right hon. Gentleman make a further statement on that matter?
§ Mr. ISAAC FOOT
Could not some step be taken to bring home to the Government authorities in the Irish Free State the desirability of taking steps to prevent infractions of the law in a neighbouring country?
§ Mr. PIKE
May I ask, further, whether, in view of the fact that the circular referred to is a direct incitement to the people of this country to break the law of this country, the Home Secretary will make it more plain to the people of this country that the circular is false, and that they would be well advised not to take any notice of it; for otherwise it is phrased in perfectly legal terms.
§ The POSTMASTER-GENERAL (Sir Kingsley Wood)
Such cheques are returned to the senders. The only powers of confiscation of money are those referred to in Section 30 (3) of the Betting and Lotteries Act, 1934.