HC Deb 21 November 1956 vol 560 cc1734-5
13. Mr. Knox Cunningham

asked the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation whether his attention has been drawn to the report of the recent case of St. John Shipping Corporation v. Joseph Rank Limited; and if he will consider amending the law in order to increase the maximum amount of fine which may be imposed in cases of overloading a ship.

The Joint Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Transport and Civil Aviation (Mr. John Profumo)

Yes, Sir, and I would refer my hon. Friend to the Answer given to the hon. and learned Member for Gloucester (Mr. Turner-Samuels) on 1st November, when my right hon. Friend said that he was sympathetic to this suggestion and had noted it for amending legislation on a suitable occasion.

Mr. Knox Cunningham

Will the hon. Gentleman go a little further than merely noting it for legislation? Is not he prepared to say that he will introduce legislation so that in future cases crime will not pay as it has in this instance?

Mr. Profumo

I do not think I can go any further than did my right hon. Friend. It might be well if I added that our statistics show that for the past four and a half years only 4 per cent. of the ships which have been inspected in British ports have been found to be overloaded.

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