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Saturday, November 14, 2009

Government lose the plot on DNA database

The Daily Telegraph reports on an astonishing proposal today, which if true is final proof that the Government really has lost the plot. They suggest that the Queen's Speech will contain a new power that will allow members of the public to challenge a chief constable's refusal to delete their profiles in court - but they will have to pay a £200 application fee to do so.

Up to a million people are on the national DNA database who have never been charged or convicted for an offence. There are now more than 5.3 million profiles on the system, making it the largest of its kind in the world. It was only a few days ago that I blogged that the Government latest plans to store innocent people’s data for six years will allow police to label them “half guilty”.

Now, it seems that anybody who has been placed on this database and who is completely innocent of any crime will have to fight the police to get themselves removed from it, and that this fight may include court action. Whatever happened to the principle of innocent before proven guilty? Since when has the possession of personal information been a reason to introduce a new tax?


Lost the plot is right - but did they ever have it, one wonders. This preoccupation with DNA seems to be almost entirely driven by the ACPO lobby and the special interests behind the technology. I would not be at all surprised to hear that a few soon to be ex-Labour cabinet members end up on the boards of the ICT firms awarded the contract for maintaining these data-bases.
Innocent until proven guilty....Mmmmm, think that unwritten principle has now gone. I have contacted you in the past regarding the CRB, and the match with my details on the Police National Computer that the CRB agency claimed; I had to go to South Wales Police HQ to give my fingerprints to prove who I wasn't...guilty until you can prove your innocent more like.
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