HC Deb 09 May 1923 vol 163 cc2395-6W

asked the Home Secretary whether, in view of the fact that in 1922 the Infanticide Act was passed providing that a woman charged with the murder of her infant child may, under certain conditions, be convicted of manslaughter, he can state how many women are now in gaol for offences which, had this Act existed at the time of their conviction, would have come under it; whether he will give the average term of imprisonment they have collectively suffered; whether the Home Office has reviewed all such cases; and, in that event, how many women have been released, how many have had their sentences reduced, and how many have not been notified of any concession whatever?


Only one woman convicted before the passing of the Infanticide Act and sentenced to death for the murder of her newly-born child is now in prison. She had served a previous sentence of 18 months for the manslaughter of another child. She has now served 26 months under her present sentence. Further interference with the sentence cannot yet be recommended.