Corpun file 16413
The Times, London, 24 September 1901
Flogging in Jamaica.
The following letters have passed between the secretary of the Humanitarian League and the Colonial Office. The former wrote to Mr. Chamberlain on September 13:--
"My committee having received information that on July
4 last the Jamaica Legislature passed a Bill, called Law No. 21 of 1901, Article 2 of which empowers the Jamaica Agricultural Society or any affiliated society to order any person suspected of praedial larceny to be flogged, under Article 3 of the same Bill, with not more than 18 stripes if under the age of 16, and 36 stripes if over that age, which punishment is to be inflicted with the cat-o'-nine-tails, and in cases where the offender is convicted a second time must be ordered in addition to or in lieu of imprisonment, I am requested to express the hope that his Majesty's Government will not give its assent to the measure in question."
Mr. Chamberlain's reply was as follows:--
"Downing-street, September 19.
Sir, -- I am directed by Mr. Secretary Chamberlain to acknowledge the receipt
of your letter of the 13th inst. on the subject of the Praedial Larceny Law recently passed by the Jamaica Legislature, and to inform you that the law referred to does not, of course, enable any person to be flogged by the order of the Jamaica Agricultural Society, or otherwise than in due course of law, that the maximum number of strokes allowed to be inflicted under the law is 24 for an adult and 12 for a person under 16 years of age, and that, in the latter case, the instrument used would be a birch and not a cat-o'-nine-tails. I am to add that the law will not come into operation until his Majesty has signified his intention of not disallowing it, and that its provisions will be very carefully considered by Mr. Chamberlain before he tenders any advice to his Majesty on the subject.
I am, Sir, your obedient servant, C.P. LUCAS."