UK Daily Mail
Wednesday, July 30, 2008
The national DNA database is being used by ministers to ‘criminalise the innocent’, it was claimed yesterday.
A Citizens’ Inquiry set up by a Government watchdog has demanded that the samples of a million innocent people stored on the files for life be removed.
Meanwhile, the Home Office should be stripped of responsibility for managing the library – because it has a ‘hidden agenda’ and ‘cannot be trusted’, the panel argued.
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The database was originally a register of those convicted of a crime. But under laws quietly passed by Labour, anybody arrested for a serious offence and later cleared can have their genetic data stored for life.
Panel member Javed Aslam said: ‘For me, that is the first step towards a totalitarian state.’
The inquiry, overseen by the Human Genetics Commission, made a series of criticisms about the operation of the database. Most striking is the recommendation for the DNA of all innocents,
including children, to be deleted. The panel, which took evidence from leading DNA experts and police, said: ‘Retaining the sample criminalises the innocent.’
A majority of the panel, which received a £50,000 Government grant, also ruled that there should be no universal DNA database, and that the ethnicity of a suspect should not be recorded. When children are found guilty of a crime, they should remain in the database for only a limited period, the panel said.
This article was posted: Wednesday, July 30, 2008 at 4:27 am