Police arresting people "just for the DNA"
By Peter Griffiths | Reuters.com
Britain has built the world's biggest DNA database without proper political debate and police routinely arrest people just to get their DNA profiles onto the system, the genetics watchdog said in a report on Tuesday.
The Human Genetics Commission, which advises the government on the social, legal and ethical aspects of genetics, called for a review of the database and said new laws must be passed to govern its use.
In a damning report, the commission said "function creep" had transformed the system from a DNA store for offenders into a database of suspects.
More than three-quarters of young black men aged between 18 and 35 are on the system, the report said.
Set up in 1995, the database contains the DNA profiles of five million citizens, eight percent of the population, making it the world's biggest in proportion to population size.
"Parliament has never formally debated the establishment of the National DNA Database and safeguards around it," commission chairman Professor Jonathan Montgomery said in a statement.
"It has developed through amendments to laws designed to regulate the taking of fingerprints and physical evidence before DNA profiling was developed.
"It is not clear how far holding DNA profiles on a central database improves police investigations."
The report quoted an unidentified retired senior police officer as saying that "it is now the norm to arrest offenders for everything" in order to obtain a DNA sample.
A Home Office spokesman said the database was a "vital crime-fighting tool" that had linked more than 410,000 crime scenes with a DNA match and a possible lead to an offender between 1998 and March 2009.
"Research shows no clear link between the level of offence for which an individual is arrested and the seriousness of any subsequent offence with which they may be associated," the spokesman said. No one from the Association of Chief Police Officers could immediately be reached for comment.
Opposition politicians and human rights groups said the report provided further evidence that Britain is becoming a "surveillance society," where people's personal details are stored and their movements constantly monitored.
Conservative Home Office spokesman James Brokenshire said Gordon Brown's government had allowed the DNA database to grow "for the sake of it, regardless of guilt or innocence."
"Under Labor's surveillance state, everyone is treated as a potential suspect," he said.
The report recommended that parliament pass new laws that clearly outline the powers of the police and the DNA database.
An independent panel should be set up to review the evidence on who has given DNA samples and why. The type of offences which require suspects to give a sample must also be reviewed.
Police in England and Wales can take and store the DNA of anyone arrested for a recordable offence, a category that includes all but minor crimes.
Article from: Reuters.com
'Big Brother' DNA database plan will place innocent people under suspicion for 12 years
US vastly expands its DNA databases
DNA database 'breach of rights'
DNA database plans for 10-year-olds who 'could become criminals'
All UK 'must be on DNA database'
EU police will access our DNA database
DNA Evidence Can Be Fabricated, Scientists Show
DNA Not The Same In Every Cell Of Body
Scientists post DNA details online
Edit your DNA: 'Gene wiki' to debut on Wikipedia
Newborns' DNA targeted for state research, profiling
Feds to collect DNA from every person they arrest
UK Police take student's DNA for £2.40 fare fine
DNA database: which police force takes the most samples?
Latest News from our Front Page
Professor: Reason Itself Is A White Male Construct
A philosophy and religion professor at Syracuse University gave an interview to The New York Times Thursday in which he critiqued the notion of pure reason as simply being a “white male Euro-Christian construction.”
Prof. John Caputo was being interviewed by fellow philosophy professor George Yancy for the 13th installment of an interview series Yancy conducts with philosophers regarding racial topics.
Given its emphasis on first principles ...
The Broken Window Fallacy
Youtube description: This short video explains one of the most persistent economic fallacies of our day.
Jenji Kohan and the Jewish Hyper-Sexualization of Western Culture
As detailed in The Culture of Critique, Freud and his followers regarded anti-Semitism was a universal pathology which had its roots in sexual repression. The theoretical basis for this can be found in Freud’s Three Essays on the Theory of Sexuality where he linked aggression to the frustration of human drives — especially the sex drive. Kevin MacDonald notes that: ...
Confederate History - Dispelling the Myths
History books, the media, the school systems, etc abound in falsehoods and inaccuracies of Confederate and Southern history. This fact sheet will help to clarify and dispell some of these rampant inaccuracies.
MYTH - The War of 1861 - 1865 was fought over slavery.
FACT - Terribly untrue. The North fought the war over money. Plain ...
Gays Rights May Open Door for Pedophile Rights
Democrats have attempted to normalize pedophilia as a sexual orientation.
A recent Supreme Court ruling on same-sex marriage may soon allow pedophiles to argue they are suffering discrimination.
‚ÄúUsing the same tactics used by ‚Äėgay‚Äô rights activists, pedophiles have begun to seek similar status arguing their desire for children is a sexual orientation no different than heterosexual or homosexuals,‚ÄĚ writes Jack Minor ...
|More News » |