Speaking in response to the report in The Herald today on the leaked HMICS report on the merger of the British Transport Police with Police Scotland, Scottish Liberal Democrat justice spokesperson Liam McArthur MSP said:
"The Scottish Government has been blinkered in its approach to the British Transport Police and this new report seems set to expose the damage it is risking.
"The SPA and Police Scotland are under enough pressure as it is thanks to the Scottish Government's botched centralisation of policing. They are ill-equipped and ill-prepared to be taking on new functions and responsibilities at this time.
"SNP ministers should have waited for a full and frank assessment from HMICS before railroading through their plans. Their gung-ho commitment to dismantling the British Transport Police in Scotland failed to consider all the options, ignored practical insight and didn't show any care for the impact on railway policing elsewhere in the UK. In short, it didn't stack up.
"Ministers must commit to making a statement to Parliament when this report is officially published."