HC Deb 22 June 1961 vol 642 cc1672-3
34. Mr. Montgomery

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether he will have an inquiry into the advisability of setting up night magistrates courts in all big cities to see whether they could be of assistance to the police in dealing with night crime.

Mr. Vosper

My right hon. Friend has no information to show that such an inquiry is desirable.

Mr. Montgomery

Is not my right hon. Friend aware of the great concern felt in this country about the increase in crime? Is the Home Office doing anything at all to help the police in their fight against crime? I realise that this would mean extra work for magistrates, and that their co-operation would be required, but it is an idea worth looking at. Will my right hon. Friend consider it?

Mr. Vosper

I will certainly do that, but I have no indication that representations have been made by the police authorities to this effect. The question was considered by the Royal Commission on Justices of the Peace in 1948, but rejected. If my hon. Friend cares to get in touch with me, I should like to hear what he has to say about it.

Mr. C. Royle

If magistrates' courts were held in the evenings, would not many police be in the courts instead of on the streets, trying to detect crime?

Mr. Vosper

My hon. Friend has in mind night courts and not evening courts.