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Innocents face 'almost impossible' task to remove DNA from database

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Innocents face 'almost impossible' task to remove DNA from database

 

10:30pm Wednesday 19th November 2008

 

 

LABOUR MPs were accused of "Orwellian" tactics tonight after voting to make it all-but impossible for innocent people to remove their DNA from the national database.

 

Opposition parties reacted with fury after the government overturned a Lords amendment that would forced the Home Office to issue specific guidelines to help the innocent strip out their profiles.

 

"This Orwellian government has turned down the opportunity to give innocent people the rights they fully deserve."

Chris Huhne

 

There are more than four million samples on the database - the largest in the world - around one quarter of whom have not been convicted, or cautioned, with any offence.

 

The law allows police to take DNA samples from anyone who is been arrested - and store their samples permanently, even if they are acquitted.

 

Most concern centres on the profiles of nearly 40,000 children from across Britain, including 13,767 under-16s from the North-East and North Yorkshire.

 

Two weeks ago, the House of Lords backed a Conservative amendment calling for the Counter-Terrorism Bill to be redrafted to include specific guidelines on DNA removal.

 

Damien Green, a Tory home affairs spokesman, said the current "draconian" rules gave the police only a single example where a person's DNA would be considered for destruction.

 

This would be where a person died in a multi-occupancy house and everyone else was arrested on suspicion of murder. If it later transpired the person died of natural causes only, then the other residents would have a case for removal.

 

But, today, the amendment was easily overturned with a government majority of 68. Ministers insisted "concerns" could be tackled simply by publicising people's rights more widely.

 

Chris Huhne, for the Liberal Democrats, said: "This Orwellian government has turned down the opportunity to give innocent people the rights they fully deserve."

 

But Home Office Vernon Coaker insisted there was "strong and convincing evidence to support the existing approach", which had led to 200,000 profiles being retained that would otherwise have been destroyed.

 

 

 

I await the day when they find the political party gene, and all Labours hard work pays off. :lol:

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