Bain studied at the University of Aberdeen School of Law, graduating with an LLB and a Diploma in Legal Practice. She became an Advocate in 1994 and Queen's Counsel in 2007. She worked as a prosecutor for the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service. She was Principal Advocate Depute from June 2009 - July 2011, the first woman to hold the position, the highest-ranking prosecutorial position in Scotland.
She became known for her prosecution of high profile cases such as that of serial killer Peter Tobin, as well the prosecution of four members of a drug gang for murder, and a wide-ranging 2009 child pornography case. In 2008 she was commissioned by the Lord Advocate and Solicitor General to report on and make recommendations on the prosecution of sex crimes in Scotland, the outcome of which led to the formation of Scotland's National Sexual Crimes Unit in 2009.
In 2011 she returned to private practice.
- "Dorothy Ruth Bain". Faculty of Advocates. Retrieved 22 April 2019.
- "Dorothy Bain becomes lead Crown Counsel"[permanent dead link], The Firm (accessed 2015-06-02).
- Brian Horne, "This Is No Whodunit: Prosecutor Tells Angelika Murder Trial Jury of the 'Powerful and Compelling' Case against Tobin", Daily Record, 3 May 2007 – via Questia Online Library (subscription required)
- "Lord Advocate announces changes to Crown Counsel team", The Journal of the Law Society of Scotland, 3 March 2009.
- Sarah Nelson, "Justice done: but questions remain after paedophile trial", The Herald, 12 May 2009.
- Damien Henderson, "National unit to investigate sex crimes", The Herald, 7 March 2009.
- "New Senior Prosecution Team for High Court Cases", Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service (accessed 2015-06-02).
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