HC Deb 28 January 1976 vol 904 c216W
Mr. Watt

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland if, in view of the recent increase in sheep rustling in Scotland, he will take early steps to introduce stiffer penalties for those involved.

Mr. William Ross

Since sheep stealing is a crime at common law, there is no limit, other than the limit on the power of the court concerned in respect of common law offences, on the penalty—whether imprisonment or fine—which may be imposed on a convicted offender. I am therefore satisfied that the courts have adequate powers to deal with these offences. If the hon. Member has evidence in his possession suggesting that there has been a recent increase in sheep stealing, I shall be glad to consider it.

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