Latest Channel 4 News:
Row over Malaysian state's coins
'Four shot at abandoned mine shaft'
Rain fails to stop Moscow wildfires
Cancer blow for identical twins
Need for Afghan progress 'signs'

Innocent on DNA database for 12 years

By Jenny Wivell

Updated on 07 May 2009

New rules on holding DNA mean if you have been arrested you could still be a suspect for 12 years, as Jenny Wivell reports.

Taking a DNA swab

The Home Office says it is finding the balance between civil liberties and protecting the public.

So it will delete DNA samples of hundreds of thousands of people from the national police database but not for up to 12 years for anyone arrested in connection with a violent or sexual offence.

DNA of more than 850,000 people will be wiped from an official database, after a ruling by the European Court of Human Rights.

But civil liberties campaigners are not happy that details of people who are arrested, but later cleared, will still be held for up to 12 years.

The database for England, Wales and Northern Ireland was held to be illegal.

But Home Office officials warned that removing people would reduce the number of crimes solved.

Jill Saward

With Samira Ahmed is Jill Saward, who campaigns on behalf of rape victims.

Send this article by email

More on this story

Channel 4 is not responsible for the content of external websites.

Watch the Latest Channel 4 News

Watch Channel 4 News when you want

Latest Science Technology & Environment news

More News blogs

View RSS feed

Autism breakthrough


A new brain scan could diagnose autism in 15 minutes.

New superbug


"Medical tourism" spreads a new superbug to the UK.

Oil spill: BP 'failed'

BP oil spill

Professor Rick Steiner asks why killing the blowout took so long.

A new energy source?


Exclusive access inside the UK's first shale gas well.

Most watched


Find out which reports and videos are getting people clicking online.

Channel 4 © 2010. Channel 4 is not responsible for the content of external websites.