Scottish Daily Mail
HALF OF OFFICERS ‘NOT ON THE FRONT LINE’
ONLY half of Scotland’s police officers are working on the front line despite SNP boasts of more bobbies on the beat.
The figures come as growing numbers of officers are drafted in to cover desk jobs, replacing axed civilian workers.
The SNP has pledged to maintain officer numbers at 1,000 more than the 16,000 level set in 2007 – but many of them are not out fighting crime.
The number of officers stand at 17,261, but internal police statistics earlier this year estimated that about 8,700 were frontline and operational – just over half the total.
Scottish Tory chief whip John Lamont said the SNP was ‘duping’ the public into believing there are ‘more than 17,000 officers on the front line’.
Police Scotland said the figures were a snapshot and the number of frontline officers varied daily.
A Scottish Government spokesman said police officer numbers continue to exceed targets.