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Statement: Conviction in Vicarious Liability case

Following the conviction of a landowner at Stranraer Sheriff Court under new ‘vicarious liability’ provisions within the Wildlife and Countryside Act, a spokesman for Scottish Land & Estates, which represents landowners across Scotland, said: "The employee in question on this estate was fined a substantial sum of money for the poisoning offences of which the estate had no knowledge whatsoever, a fact recognised in court and by the Crown Office. The gamekeeper was subsequently dismissed from his post and the shoot closed down. The estate believed it had sufficient safeguards in place but that was not the case so the estate has admitted ignorance of the law and the limited extent of its culpability is reflected in the low level of fine. Before this incident, the estate had an unblemished record. When Vicarious Liability offences were introduced there was a great deal of confusion over the liabilities of estates and that remains an ongoing issue despite the industry trying its utmost to advise on the pitfalls of this legislation."

 

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