SOME farmers bought "entitlements" to subsidy from farmers who, for example, had to retire from farming.

They have then "attached" those "entitlements" to poor quality land, which was all permissible under the old system.

Andy Wightman said: "They rent this land very cheaply and have thus been paid substantial sums of public money for doing nothing."

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In response to Freedom of Information Act requests, the Scottish Government has confirmed Frank Smart's payment of £3.22m was in respect of 52 "fields", covering nearly 85,000 acres, from Kincardine O'Neill in Aberdeenshire to Harris in the Western Isles.