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Government admits national DNA database holds records of 40,000 INNOCENT children

Friday, August 15, 2008

The national DNA database contains the profiles of almost 40,000 innocent children, the Home Office said today.

Junior minister Meg Hillier said the profiles of an estimated 39,095 ten to 17-year-olds who ‘had not been convicted, cautioned, received a final warning or reprimand and had no charge pending against them’ were on the database.

Opposition parties said it was evidence the Government was building a national DNA database by stealth and called for a parliamentary debate on the issue.


Ms Hillier was responding to a parliamentary question from Tory MP Grant Shapps.

She said figures obtained from the National DNA Database (NDNAD) and Police National Computer (PNC) in April showed there were 349,934 DNA profiles relating to under-18s, equivalent to around 303,393 individuals due to replication rates.

‘Of those estimated 303,393 persons, 264,297 (87.1 per cent) had a conviction, caution, reprimand or had received a final warning,’ she said.

‘And 39,095 (12.8 per cent) had not been convicted, cautioned, received a final warning/reprimand and had no charge pending against them.’

Liberal Democrat home affairs spokesman Chris Huhne said it was wrong to store the DNA of innocent people and argued there were serious shortcomings when it came to convicted criminals.