Arresting Development

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Dec. 12 2008 11:15 AM

Arresting Development

The latest encroachment of DNA testing: No conviction, or even prosecution, necessary. From Spencer Hsu in the Washington Post :

Immigration and civil liberties groups condemned a new U.S. government policy to collect DNA samples from all noncitizens detained by authorities and all people arrested for federal crimes. The new Justice Department rule, published Wednesday and effective Jan. 9, dramatically expands a federal law enforcement database of genetic identifiers, which is now limited to storing information about convicted criminals and arrestees from 13 states.

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This comes after the U.K. launched a similar plan and got smacked down by European judges:

This month, the European Court of Human Rights unanimously ruled that a British policy to collect fingerprints and DNA of all criminal suspects, including those later deemed innocent, violated privacy rights.

If anyone here thinks the U.S. Supreme Court will take a similar line, I've got a few large automobile manufacturers to sell you.

Will Saletan writes about politics, science, technology, and other stuff for Slate. He’s the author of Bearing Right.

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