Parliament to hear police evidence on wildlife crime

28.10.2014

Wildlife crime will once again enter the spotlight as the Crown Office and senior police officers give evidence in public to the Scottish Parliament on 29th October 2014. The meeting is part of the Rural Affairs and Climate Change and Environment (RACCE) Committee’s scrutiny of the Scottish Government’s recent Wildlife Crime in Scotland report.

Committee Convener Rob Gibson MSP commented: 

“As awareness of the scope and complexity of wildlife crime increases, the Committee is keen to hear evidence from those on the frontline. This is an important way that the Parliament can support their crucial work to help protect Scotland’s natural heritage, including its raptors, mammals and sealife for future generations. 

“The Committee’s particular focus will be on the challenges faced by those responsible for enforcing wildlife crime legislation.”  

Since 2011, Scottish Ministers are required by law to produce an annual report on the state of wildlife crime in Scotland, including information on incidences and prosecutions during the year. The Scottish Government’s second Wildlife Crime in Scotland report was published on 20th October 2014. 

Mr Gibson MSP continued: 

“The Scottish Government’s focus over the past two years has shown a clear commitment to understanding the fast-evolving, complex nature of wildlife crime, and producing targeted ways of identifying and prosecuting offenders. 

“Now we want to hear how the Government is taking clear, effective and measurable action to progress that commitment now, and in the future.” 

The Rural Affairs and Climate Change and Environment (RACCE) Committee will continue its scrutiny of the report by taking evidence from the Minister for Environment and Climate Change, Paul Wheelhouse MSP, on 5th November 2014. The Committee will write to the Government with its recommendations at the end of November. 

Giving evidence to RACCE on 29th October 2014:

  • Assistant Chief Constable Malcolm Graham, Major Crime and Public Protection, Police Scotland
  • Detective Chief Superintendent Robbie Allan, Wildlife Crime Portfolio Holder, Police Scotland
  • Patrick Hughes, Head of Wildlife & Environmental Crime Unit, The Crown Estate

Written evidence provided to the Committee is available here: http://www.scottish.parliament.uk/parliamentarybusiness/CurrentCommittees/82757.aspx  

Committee papers for Tuesday’s session are available at: http://www.scottish.parliament.uk/S4_RuralAffairsClimateChangeandEnvironmentCommittee/Meeting%20Papers/Meeting_Papers_29_10_2014.pdf

The evidence session can be viewed via this link:

http://www.scottishparliament.tv/?vid=live-committee-room-5 

Photographs of the evidence session will be available free of charge.

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