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RSPB Scotland responds to the second conviction for wildlife vicarious liability offences

Last modified: 01 December 2015

Buzzard sitting on post in field

Image: Niall Benvie

Ian Thomson, RSPB Scotland’s Head of Investigations said “It is shocking that in 21st century Scotland, someone employed as a professional gamekeeper has not only unlawfully targeted protected birds of prey, but has used a trap that has been illegal for decades. It is also appalling that a game farmer is so preoccupied with the production of pheasants for sport shooting that he has disregarded his responsibility to ensure that his employee was complying with the law. The recent Review of Wildlife Crime Penalties recognised that sentences for wildlife crimes are too low and we hope the Scottish Government implements the recommendations made by the review panel as soon as possible.

“We welcome this second conviction under the vicarious liability legislation, and particularly commend the work of the Crown Office and Police Scotland in putting this case together. We hope that this sends out the clear message not only that Scotland’s birds of prey are fully protected by law, but it is the responsibility of all those involved in the ownership or management of gamebird shoots to ensure that these laws are complied with.”

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