CRIMINALS who assault police officers could soon be forced to pay cash to good causes through a “restitution order.”
Under a new plan unveiled by Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill anyone convicted of such an assault could be forced to pay money to charities such as the Police Benevolent Fund and The Police Treatment Centres charity.
The proposal will be part of the forthcoming Scottish Government’s Victims and Witnesses Bill.
The order would, however, not replace existing arrangements for compensation paid directly to victims.
The Scottish Government said it would also consult on proposals for a victims’ surcharge to create a fund to help the victims of crime.
MacAskill said: “We expect courts to deal firmly with those who assault our officers. Criminals should be made to pay for their crimes and it’s only right that victims should benefit.
“We are already considering plans to create a victims’ surcharge so that those who suffer from crimes can get the help they need to recover.”
He added: “The Police Treatment Centres put right the damage done by criminal assaults largely with money raised by donations from the victims.
“Instead it is right to expect criminals who assault police to contribute to payment for this treatment.”