Oral Answers to Questions — David Backer (Deportation Order).

– in the House of Commons on 29th July 1926.

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Lieut.-Colonel Sir FREDERICK HALL:


asked the Home Secretary what action he proposes to take with regard to David Backer, a Russian Communist engaged on treasonable propaganda work, with reference to whom a number of deportation orders have been made but who is still in this country owing to the refusal of the Soviet Government to take him back?

Photo of Mr William Joynson-Hicks Mr William Joynson-Hicks , Twickenham

This man has now been sentenced to 12 months' imprisonment as an incorrigible rogue. The question of his ultimate disposal is not therefore of immediate urgency, but as I explained in reply to a question by the hon. Member for Acton (Sir H. Brittain) on 14th June, application has again been made to the Soviet Government with a view to Backer's recognition as a Soviet citizen.

Sir F. HALL:

Has the right hon. Gentleman noticed that the magistrate said this case showed a monstrous state of affairs, and that he regarded this man as a criminal of the worst type who was preying on the poor people of this country; and will the right hon. Gentleman undertake to see that when this man has completed his sentence he is deported to Russia? Let them have their own criminals back.

Photo of Mr William Joynson-Hicks Mr William Joynson-Hicks , Twickenham

I have explained to my hon. and gallant Friend that I want to deport this man. He is a very undesirable person here, but I cannot compel Russia to take him if they are unwilling to do so.

Sir F. HALL:

Well, drown him!

Photo of Sir Harry Brittain Sir Harry Brittain , Acton

Will the right hon. Gentleman consider sending a bill to Russia for the cost of keeping this incorrigible rogue for the next 12 months?

Photo of Mr John Grace Mr John Grace , Wirral

Are not all Russian Communists incorrigible rogues?