Top cop wild about Livingston

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An Australian wildlife crime investigator has praised the work of the Partnership for Action Against Wildlife Crime Scotland (PAWS) and the high levels of co-operation between its members.

Steve James has been awarded sponsorship to conduct a fact-finding mission about the emerging technologies, intelligence tools and forensic science used in Scotland to investigate wildlife crime.

Steve said: “I was extremely impressed to see the level of commitment from the Scottish Government and how the different agencies collaborate to not only tackle wildlife crime but wildlife conservation.”

His 10 day visit included a visit to the national wildlife crime unit in Livingston, where he said he was ‘‘extremely impressed’’.

He said: “The fact that they have a dedicated, intelligence cell, solely for wildlife crime is way ahead of the majority of jurisdictions around the world.”

Nevin Hunter, head of the National Wildlife Crime Unit, said: “Meeting Steve was very useful. Listening to him and the challenges he faces reiterated how far we have come over recent years with partnership working to address wildlife crime in Scotland. It is great to think that learning from our experiences Steve can positively impact on wildlife crime in his part of the world.”