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Police: Databases

Volume 698: debated on Monday 4 February 2008

asked Her Majesty's Government:

In the past year, how many individuals' fingerprints and biological samples have been taken without consent in connection with a non-imprisonable offence; and [HL1310]

How many sets of (a) fingerprints, and (b) biological samples have been taken by police from individuals who were arrested for a recordable offence and were (1) not charged, and (2) subsequently acquitted. [HL1311]

No information is held centrally on the number of individuals who have had fingerprints and DNA samples taken without consent in connection with a non-imprisonable offence.

Data on arrest and criminal histories such as subsequent charges, convictions and acquittals are not held on the National Fingerprint Database (IDENTI) or the National DNA Database (NDNAD), but are held on the Police National Computer (PNC). Such data, including data on the number of persons arrested for a recordable offence, have their fingerprints and DNA taken and who were (1) not charged or (2) acquitted are not available routinely at present, but the National Policing Improvement Agency which has responsibility for the delivery of NDNAD services is working towards being able to provide such data regularly from the NDNAD and PNC. The information requested could be obtained currently only at disproportionate cost by cross-searching all the records retained for such person on the PNC.

However, some information was obtained at the end of October 2007, which was published in an answer given in another place, (Official Report, 13 December 2007, col. 761W).