HC Deb 31 March 1909 vol 3 cc462-3W

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether his attention has been directed to the fact that servants and dependants of vendors of land in Ireland, for which State money is being advanced, when engaged in the practice of duress for their employers, such as threats of eviction and seizures for arrears of unpayable rents, getting embarrassed tenants to sign purchase agreements at prices which the land can never repay, are allowed to act as the only witnesses of the agreements thus obtained, and thus to obtain public money for their employers; and whether he will take any steps to bring this practice to an end?


My right hon. Friend has asked me to answer this question. The rules of the Estates Commissioners with regard to the preparation of purchase agreements expressly provide that in no case shall the witness to the signature of the tenant be in the employment of the vendor.