PEOPLE in Scotland who illegally fly-tip rubbish escape punishment 99 per cent of the time, new data has revealed.

A Freedom of Information (FOI) request from the Scottish LibDems found there were 207,960 reports of rubbish being dumped between 2019/20 and 2021/22, but just 2467 fines were handed out.

And the party, which obtained the data from local authorities across Scotland, said that just 45 incidents were referred to the Procurator Fiscal.

It means just 1.2% of reports resulted in a fixed penalty notice or have been referred.

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Glasgow City Council reported the highest number of incidents with 67,219 but issued just 209 fines.

The City of Edinburgh Council recorded 35,038 in the three-year period, while Fife Council logged 11,711, according to the FOI data.

Some councils, such as Edinburgh’s, did not hold data on the number of fines handed out and others did not hold data on how many convictions were secured, if any.

But, according to the LibDems' data, only six of the local authorities in Scotland had passed cases to the Procurator Fiscal and only East Dunbartonshire had obtained a conviction.

Willie Rennie, the party’s communities spokesperson, has called for more to be done to end Scotland’s fly-tipping "blight".

“We need to see local authorities using the powers at their disposal to clamp down on this disgusting behaviour and ensure that repeat offenders especially feel the full force of the law,” he said.

“Littering might as well be legal under this SNP government.

“From remote beauty spots to busy cities, these figures show that fly-tipping is a blight on our beautiful country. Not only that but it can prove catastrophic for animals, plants and soil.”

Rennie said: “The pandemic and the bin strikes disrupted refuse collections but there is also a fundamental unfairness in the present system, which sees farmers and other owners left with the responsibility for clearing up waste which has been dumped on their properties.”

He said his party wanted to see increased support for farmers and those who end up bearing the brunt of cleaning up the rubbish.

“This should use the proceeds of a new restitution order which hits offenders’ pockets hard,” he said.

“This could see courts able to require a contribution from offenders to a new national fund available to help victims.”

The Crown Office and the Scottish Government have been approached for comment.