Seminar: Nature Conservation & The Law of Evidence

This past event was fully booked!

Dr Phil Glover (School of Law), Malcolm Combe (School of Law), Ian Thomson (RSPB) and Tim Baynes (Scottish Land and Estates) explore the legal issues around nature conservation and the law of evidence.

There is wide agreement that nature conservation is important. In turn, having a legal regime that can control any persecution of endangered wildlife plays an important part within nature conservation. Over and above any animal welfare considerations, Scotland specifically protects some species by criminalising acts against them. Scotland’s iconic birds of prey are amongst those protected. But how does Scots law work in practice? Alleged instances of birds of prey coming to harm tend to happen in remote areas where, by definition, there will be few potential witnesses. This reduces the likelihood of a successful prosecution. For some seeking to learn about and protect birds of prey, covert recording equipment has been deployed, to record (for example) nest sites. This has a number of legal implications, most notably from the perspective of admissibility of evidence in court and guaranteeing a fair trial for anyone accused of a crime. Another relates to the positioning of a camera on private property (that is to say, land that is not owned by the person positioning the camera), which has a related issue of privacy for people who live and work near such covert installations.

In this event, Dr Phil Glover of the University of Aberdeen (a Lecturer at the School of Law and an expert in the law of evidence, investigatory powers and related human rights matters), will provide an overview of the law, drawing on his recent article in the legal journal Juridical Review entitled ‘The Admissibility of Covert Video Data Evidence in Wildlife Crime Proceedings: A "Public Authority" Issue?’ The event will be chaired by Malcolm Combe of the University of Aberdeen (a Senior Lecturer at the School of Law, and the author of the forthcoming book Access Rights and Rights of Way: A Guide to the Law in Scotland), who will speak to any issues around the installation of cameras and other property law matters. They will be joined by Tim Baynes of Scottish Land and Estates and Ian Thomson of the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, who will offer their practical insight as to the issues that can be faced.

Malcolm Combe, Dr Phil Glover, Tim Baynes, Ian Thomson
Hosted by
Malcolm Combe
The Sir Duncan Rice Library, Room 224
  • This FREE event will start at 3:15pm
  • Non university pass holders can collect a pass at the Welcome Desk
  • Parking on campus is free after 4pm
  • This event is now fully booked.  

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