Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill has welcomed an increase in the number of solicitors taking part in the police station duty scheme run by the Scottish Legal Aid Board.
He was briefed on the rising number when he met with staff at the board, and the team operating the Solicitor Contact Line, which is part of the national police station duty scheme which came into operation earlier this year.
It is manned 24 hours a day and gives suspects access to legal advice.
Speaking during his visit to the board’s headquarters in Drumsheugh Gardens, Mr MacAskill said: “The scheme has been operating successfully for six months and I am encouraged to see private practice solicitor numbers increase week on week, and is now approaching 600. I am grateful to all those solicitors for providing this important service, especially over the festive period.”