§ MR. D. KILBRIDE (Galway, N.)
I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, with reference to the refusal of Captain Higginson 295 to act as high sheriff of the county of the town of Carrickfergus, (1) whether Captain Higginson has any lands within the county; and, if not, why he was nominated as high sheriff for that county; (2) whether he is aware that in 1893 Mr. Standish Grady Parkes-Hutchinson, who was under warrant appointed by the then Lord Lieutenant of Ireland as high sheriff of Queen's County, refused to accept and take on himself the office of sheriff, notwithstanding that he had sufficient lands to answer the Queen and her people, and that the Attorney General having proceeded against Mr. Hutchinson by way of criminal information, the jury disagreed, and Mr. Hutchinson was discharged; and (3) whether, considering that a number of business gentlemen living in Carrickfergus are fit and able to serve, if nominated, he will consider the desirability of relieving Captain Higginson of the costs and inconveniences of a fruitless prosecution?
§ THE ATTORNEY GENERAL FOR IRELAND
With the permission of my right hon. Friend I will reply to this Question. Captain Higginson's case comes on for trial at the end of this month. The first paragraph refers to matters in issue in the suit, and the last paragraph to its possible result; I must decline, therefore, to answer them. The facts as to Mr. Hutchinson's case are not accurately stated. One of the questions in issue in that case was as to the sufficiency of the lands owned by Mr. Hutchinson, and another question in issue was, who was to be the judge of that sufficiency, whether the Crown or the person required to serve? After the jury had disagreed Mr. Hutchinson pleaded guilty, and served as sheriff for the year 1894.