DoT is bigget user of private investigators

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The Department of Transport is the Government's heaviest user of private detectives and investigation companies, according to figures collated by a Labour MP.

Last year it spent pounds 477,000 on investigators - and pounds 344,000 the year before - in seeking evidence for "possible legal proceedings" against trespassers on roadbuilding sites, and for processing legal documents. It also spent pounds 373,000 last year on serving summons for unlicensed vehicle use, and in debt collection in such cases, according to a reply to a parliamentary question from Brian Donohoe, MP for Cunninghame South. "The question must be asked whether this is a proper use of public money, or whether sensitive inquiries of this nature should be dealt with through other public agencies," Mr Donohoe said.