April 20th, 2010

Up the Scots

Posted in The Job - Comment by 200

I’ve previously reported on my disagreements with the way the DNA database operates, particularly in England & it appeared again last week in a news report.

A lobby group applied for figures under the Freedom of Information Act on how many samples had been taken from innocent people between December 2008 January 2010. Only Cumbria Police in England & Strathclyde Police in Scotland were able to supply figures.

4,668 samples were taken by Cumbria, of these, 1,319 – 28% – had no further action taken. Only 12 were deleted from the database despite the European Court’s judgement that retaining DNA samples of innocent people was illegal.

The law in Scotland is different. (although the Labour Party appear to be trying to change the law in Scotland to mimic that of England & Wales) During the same period Strathclyde took 19,197 samples, 6,865 – 31% from people not convicted of any offence – all those profiles were deleted.

It seems strange that Scotland feels it can operate within the requirements of human rights legislation, whilst England can’t.

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