DNA Profiles of Hundreds of Terror Suspects Destroyed in UK

Errors by Britain intelligence have resulted in the destruction of DNA data of over 800 terror suspects.

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Fingerprint and DNA data of more than 800 terror suspects destroyed due to errors by UK intelligence

Fingerprint and DNA profiles of over 800 terror suspects have been destroyed due to errors committed by Britain’s intelligence and police services, prompting authorities to launch a probe today.

The number of destroyed cases represents approximately one in 10 of the 8,000 extremists whose details are held on the UK government’s counter-terrorism database.

UK Biometrics Commissioner MacGregor blamed the destruction of the evidence on “repeated delays” in transferring DNA material by police, and “substantial delays” by the Security Service in providing assessments of suspects.

Hundreds of DNA profiles have been lost which can link suspects to criminal activity, which in many of these cases may be terrorism-related
Keith Vaz, Indian-origin MP of Britain and Chair, Parliament’s Home Affairs Select Committee

Vaz stressed on the need for an urgent investigation to get to the root of the problem, and an understanding of how to prevent issues like this damaging UK’s national security.

“There needs to be an urgent investigation to get to the root of this problem, but the Home Office must get a grip of how data is being managed to prevent issues like this from damaging our national security,” Vaz said.

In a report released by the UK Home Office this week, MacGregor found that fingerprints and DNA profiles of 810 suspects was destroyed. He added that 108 of the suspects were so dangerous that the Security Service had provided evidence supporting the need to keep hold of the database, and stressed on how important it was to establish how replacement material should be taken from the individuals or other action should be taken to minimise any risk.

A Home Office spokesperson said :

The commissioner has concluded that steps are being taken to address these issues, and the police have provided further assurances that they will be kept under close review. The government’s full response to the commissioner’s annual report will be published in due course.

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