Police ScotlandMotoring convictions in Scotland rose 14 per cent in the first year of Police Scotland’s operation, new figures reveal – but road deaths also increased by 14 per cent in 2013/14. 

The figures have led to accusations Police Scotland is focusing on ‘easy target’ motorists.

A report by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary for Scotland (HMICS), described as “highly critical”, says police officers felt under pressure to pursue the “soft” target of speeding drivers.

Four in every 10 convictions in Scotland is now related to motoring offences, says the Express.

The rise in convictions is partly because of a new two-year campaign to target motoring offences but the Telegraph reports police forces have been “massively overshooting” them in the first year alone.

The HMICS report says there is “no rationale” behind the targets.

2013/14 saw the first increase in criminal convictions for motorists in seven years, with 5,000 more convictions and a 17 per cent rise in speeding offences.

In the same year, there was a 20 per cent fall in convictions for murder, attempted murder and serious assault.

Responding to the report, Chief Superintendent Iain Murray, head of road policing for Police Scotland told the Telegraph: “Road safety and casualty reduction remains one of the top three priorities identified by communities across Scotland.

“We are committed to influencing road user behaviour and reducing the numbers of casualties on Scotland’s roads and officers routinely deal with risk-taking behaviour that we know puts people unnecessarily at risk.”