HC Deb 04 April 1940 vol 359 cc297-8
21. Mr. Duncan

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many regional committees for the reviewing of the cases of certain aliens have now been set up; of whom they are composed; and whether any of them have started work?

The Secretary of State for the Home Department (Sir John Anderson)

Twelve regional advisory committees, one for the area of each Civil Defence region, have been appointed. Each committee is composed of a chairman with legal qualifications and a panel of lay members who are prominent residents in the region. The committee when sitting to hear cases will consist of the chairman and two lay members drawn from the panel. In addition, the chairman will be assisted by two representatives of the Defence Departments when the committee is considering the cases of aliens resident in a protected area. A considerable amount of preliminary work has already been done by the police, who have the duty of bringing cases before the committees, and I understand that the actual hearing of cases by the committees will begin within the course of a week or a fortnight.

Mr. Duncan

While thanking my right hon. Friend for his reply, may I ask him whether it is clear that nothing which these committees do will detract from his authority to take action in special cases?

Sir J. Anderson

It is always possible to make representations to me in urgent cases, and I am under no obligation to await the consideration of the case by a committee in such circumstances.

Dr. Edith Summerskill

Can the right hon. Gentleman say whether the panel is composed of citizens of both sexes?

Sir J. Anderson

Yes, Sir.

24. Mr. Levy

asked the Home Secretary whether he has now decided if the enemy alien, named Solf, who was recently sent to prison for an offence, while uninterned, against the Defence Regulations, is to be interned on his release from gaol; and, if not, what action it is proposed to take in this case?

Sir J. Anderson

Yes, Sir. This man was interned on the expiration of his sentence of imprisonment.

Sir Gifford Fox

Is my right hon. Friend able to give an assurance that this man will continue to be interned for the rest of the war

Sir J. Anderson

No, Sir, I can give no assurance.