§ Mr. McGOVERN
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland whether his attention has been drawn to a police raid on the house of Mr. Meecham, of 59, Wellington Street, Craigneuk, Wishaw, at 2.30 a.m., on 30th December, 1934, without a warrant; whether he is aware that this house was ransacked, persons ordered from their beds, and Mrs. Meecham was left in a state of collapse; that a son of Mr. Meecham was ordered to accompany the police to the business premises of the family, 600yards from the house, and that they ransacked this shop; that nothing was discovered that was wrong; that Mr. and Mrs. Meecham have been householders for 30 years; that not one of the family has ever been in trouble; that in consequence of these visits and searches this business has suffered; and when he intends taking steps to remove the chief constable of this area?
§ Sir G. COLLINS
The reply to the first part of the question is in the negative. From inquiries made it is understood that the house and shop referred to were seached at the time and date mentioned. The searches were conducted by an officer of Customs and Excise with the assistance of officers of the Motherwell and Wishaw Burgh police force in pursuance of search warrants issued by a justice of the peace under the Spirits Act, 1880. The inquiries also show that no persons were ordered from their beds, that Mrs. Meecham was not left in a state of collapse, that she and her son went voluntarily from the dwelling house to the business premises, and that no unlawful apparatus or material was discovered in the course of the searches. No information is available as to the precise effect of these searches upon the family business, but the searches were conducted at an hour which would involve a minimum of publicity. As regards the last part of the question, the statutory disciplinary authority in relation to the chief constable is the Motherwell and Wishaw police authority.