§ [The question was as follows:
§ To ask His Majesty's Government, how many convictions have been obtained during the past two years against persons charged with wearing of military decorations and medals without authorization; and how many prosecutions have taken place during the same period for contraventions of Section 156A (3) of the Army Act prohibiting the sale of decorations to such persons.]
§ THE JOINT PARLIAMENTARY UNDER-SECRETARY OF STATE FOR WAR (Lord Croft)
My Lords, I regret that the information asked for is not immediately available, and could not be obtained without a disproportionate amount of labour.
§ LORD DAVIES
Arising out of that reply, may I ask my noble friend whether he can hold out any hopes that the information may be available some time, or can he give a very rough indication in regard to what I am asking?
§ LORD CROFT
My Lords, I am afraid I must answer my noble friend that, owing to the strain of the war, at the present moment all Departments are so occupied that it really would not be in the national interest to go to all the trouble which would be involved to obtain this information. There would have to be a great 224 number of inquiries amongst local authorities throughout the country. I understand, of course, the sincere motives which my noble friend has in asking for these particulars.