The solicitor who heads the Inspectorate of Prosecution in Scotland has been named as the new Police Investigations and Review Commissioner (PIRC).

Michelle Macleod will take up her new role on 17 August 2019, succeeding current Commissioner Kate Frame, who announced in February she was stepping down at the end of her five-year term. Mrs Macleod has also been appointed for five years.

The PIRC conducts independent investigations into serious incidents involving the police, and independent scrutiny of the way policing organisations in Scotland, including Police Scotland and the Scottish Police Authority, respond to complaints from the public. This scrutiny includes incidents where someone has died or sustained serious injury after contact with the police, as well as incidents where there is an indication that a police officer may have committed an offence.

Mrs Macleod was appointed HM Chief Inspector of Prosecution in August 2013 after working in the fiscal service for 21 years. She joined the service in 1992 as a trainee and has held various roles across Scotland, including area procurator fiscal for Central, head of policy at Crown Office, and procurator fiscal High Court for the East of Scotland.

She commented: “I am delighted to be taking up this appointment. The work of my predecessor, Kate Frame, has provided a strong foundation in improving standards and consistency of policing. I look forward to building on this and bolstering public confidence in policing in Scotland through robust and independent investigations of incidents involving the force.”

Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf added: “The PIRC plays a key role in safeguarding the trust which the public have in their police service.

“I welcome the appointment of such an experienced and committed individual as Mrs Macleod who will build on the valuable work already carried out by Ms Frame. I am grateful to Ms Frame for the energy, commitment and service she has shown over the years and wish her well when she leaves in August.”