Scenes at the Old Bailey. Speech by Sir John Simon regarding capital punishment
The Old Bailey, London, England
MS. Low angle shot of dome of Old Bailey showing statue of Justice, pan down to entrance to Old Bailey. SCU. & MS. Low Angle. Dome & statue of Old Bailey. SCU. Inscription over Old Bailey door reading 'defend the children of the poor and punish the wrongdoer.' Pan down to door. MS. Sign on wall reading: 'Central Criminal Court.' SCU. Sir John Simon seated at desk speaks:
Speech: "The House of Lords has rejected a proposal carried by a small majority of private MP's against the advice of the Labour Government to abolish all executions for murder for the next five years. Our present law provides that when a jury finds the accused guilty of willful murder the Judge must sentence him to capital punishment, but the Home Secretary has the duty, and I in the past have twice been Home Secretary, of considering the individual case and of deciding whether the circumstances are such as to justify the substitution of imprisonment. That is our system, and it is a system that has worked well. It is a system in which the mass of the population believe. Whatever audience may hear my voice, I am sure that the great majority of them will agree that for the supreme crime, supreme punishment should be reserved and that in this matter the House of Lords has served the people well."
Comb. Neg. b/w. (Selected scenes 48/50)