Thursday, May 07, 2009

Innocentish until proven guilty

"Smith's new regime leaves the innocent who have been cleared of charges of minor, non-violent crime on the [DNA] database for six years, which erodes the principle of innocent until proven guilty and in classic New Labour fashion creates a third way, neither innocent or guilty but innocentish." —Mark Thomas

"There is an unspoken assumption in here that these thousands of crimes that will not be detected by not having the DNA will remain undetected and that simply isn't the case. A significant number of these will be detectable through conventional police work, including the obtaining of fresh police DNA samples.

"We have been told some very cursory figures. One would like to know a great deal more. Are these serious crimes? Are they a relatively small number of individuals, for example serial burglars? We don't have that information at all. And we need that information to be able to balance the improved ability to detect these crimes against the right to a private life." —Professor Sir Alec Jeffreys, inventor of DNA fingerprinting

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