§ MR. JOYCE
I beg to ask the President of the Board of Trade whether his attention has been called to the case of a pilot licensed by the Clyde Pilotage Board, who was tried on the 15th instant in the sheriff's court and heavily fined for wilful breach or neglect of duty, 1267 causing risk of collision between the s.s. "Maracas," of which the pilot was in charge, and H.M.S. "Harrier"; whether he is aware of the circumstances of that case, namely, that the Clyde Pilotage Board had, at the request of the Admiralty (conveyed through the Board of Trade), already fully investigated the case and exonerated the pilot from all blame, and that the captain and officers of the ss. "Maracas" were not available as witnesses owing to the lapse of time before proceedings were commenced against the pilot, and that the case was tried and determined by the sheriff alone and without nautical assistance, and was determined practically upon the evidence of the naval officers, to whose evidence only that of the pilot himself was opposed, such circumstances leading to a miscarriage of justice; and whether, under the circumstances, he will grant a special departmental inquiry into the facts of the case.
§ MR. CHURCHILL
I have no information as to the proceedings before the Glasgow sheriff beyond a report of the case which appeared in the public Press. The Board of Trade have no power to review the decision of a Court of law, and I am therefore not prepared to order a special inquiry into the facts of the case.