Developer appeals against conviction for destroying bat roost

Chesterfield magistrates court.
Chesterfield magistrates court.

A developer who was found to have destroyed the resting place of protected wild bats in Matlock after he forged ahead with plans for a residential site is appealing against the conviction.

Chesterfield magistrates’ court heard during a trial how Hargurdial Singh Rai, 55, of Birmingham-based ISAR Enterprises Ltd, went ahead with the redevelopment of former offices on Dale Road despite a survey which identified the site as a resting place for brown, long-eared bats.

Rai denied the charge, claiming he had delegated decisions regarding building to others. Magistrates found Rai, of North Drive, Handsworth, Birmingham, and ISAR guilty of destroying the resting place of a protected species between March, 2011, and July, 2012. The case was adjourned to Derby Crown Court for a planned sentence and confiscation hearing but Rai’s case was further adjourned last Thursday until January 9 to consider an appeal against the conviction.