Three-fold rise in wildlife crime
11 November 2009 - BBC News
Wildlife crimes in Scotland have almost trebled in the past decade, according
to new figures. Offences involving cruelty to wild animals increased from 140 in 1999-2000 to
384 in 2008-09.
The figures cover offences involving
birds, badgers, hunting with dogs and cruelty to wild animals.
Dr Nanette Milne MSP, Conservative spokeswoman for the environment, said:
"Wildlife crime is deplorable and we must do all we can to wipe out this
disgusting practice. Based on today's figures, we are a long way from achieving
that goal. Whilst there may be a case for the tightening of existing legislation, it is
the consistent enforcement of that existing legislation which is the real
problem. Scotland has some of the strongest wildlife protection laws in Europe and
our efforts should be primarily focused on ensuring the existing legislation is
properly used and enforced."
A Scottish government spokeswoman said: "The increase reflects the growing
awareness and reporting of crimes against wildlife. We are determined to continue our work through the Partnership For Action
Against Wildlife Crime to bring those few individuals perpetrating crimes
against wildlife to justice."
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