§ The UNDER-SECRETARY of STATE for FOREIGN AFFAIRS (Mr. Acland)
The case in question arose out of a street quarrel in Honda, Colombia, in February last. Mr. Hughes was imprisoned for a month and put to serious expense. Bail was at first refused, in spite of his being a member of a well-known local firm, and in the face of strong technical evidence in his favour. The lawyer who finally obtained his admission to bail was subsequently imprisoned on a charge against him dating from six years ago. The case has not yet been settled. His Majesty's Minister in Colombia has made repeated representations to the Colombian Government. His last report on the subject states that a change of venue has been decided upon, but a further dispatch is expected very shortly, upon the receipt of which the Secretary of State will decide what further action should be taken. The manner in which this ease has been dealt with by the Colombian authorities has made a painful impression on His Majesty's Government.