It is time to take effective action against title raiders in Scotland. What do I mean by title raider? A person who acquires title to land with the sole or main purpose of holding to ransom parties who, in good faith, are exercising access over that land or are using service media in it.

Title raiders succeed by using the inexorable logic of our law of landownership. A sophisticated legal system should not allow this to happen.

Although the abolition of the feudal system has reduced the scope for title raiders to operate, they are still operating and action is required to stop them.

What is the remedy? I believe that the jurisdiction of the Lands Tribunal for Scotland should be extended by an Act of the Scottish Parliament so that the Tribunal has an equitable jurisdiction to create appropriate servitude rights over the title raider’s land, subject to such conditions as the Tribunal thinks fit. Any compensation to the title raider should, however, be purely nominal.

Roy Johnstone, retired solicitor, Edinburgh