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by Louise Wilson
07 September 2023
Douglas Ross: SNP has declared ‘open season for criminals’

Douglas Ross: SNP has declared ‘open season for criminals’

The Scottish Government has declared “open season for criminals” after it was announced police in the north east will no longer investigate some crimes, Douglas Ross has warned.

First Minister Humza Yousaf accused Ross of “sensationalism for cheap political lines” and pointed to an increase in Police Scotland's budget for 2023-24.

The pilot project has been described as a “proportionate response to crime”, with a Police Scotland spokesperson adding: “Hard choices are being made to deliver effective policing within the funding available.”

The Scottish Tory leader said the change was a direct result of SNP funding cuts, and it would leave people paying more for a "poorer service".

Speaking at the first FMQs back after summer, Ross asked: “Why is he content to let victims in the north east to without justice?”

Yousaf said police funding had not been cut and highlighted there were more officers per head in Scotland than in England or Wales.

He added: "If crimes are reported and there is no associated threat, risk, harm or vulnerability, and no proportionate lines of inquiry, then officers will give a crime referendum number, the crime will be recorded, but no further action will be taken.”

Meanwhile, Scottish Labour's Anas Sarwar raised the issue of reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete (RAAC) in schools.

Yousaf confirmed 40 schools were suspected to contain RAAC but mitigation measures were in place.

Sarwar urged the government to publish a full list of schools, NHS buildings and other public buildings suspected to contain the material.

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