June 15, 2006

DNA sampling

"An Auckland criminal lawyer says some of his younger clients have been offered cigarettes while being held in custody in return for giving their DNA profiles for inclusion in the national database.
The claim was one of several received by the Herald yesterday after a woman alleged her teenage son was coerced into providing a DNA sample to get out of a $400 traffic fine.
Auckland lawyer Graeme Newell said the inducements had been going on for years. While some of his clients waited inside cells for their bail application to be heard, police officers had asked them whether they would be willing to volunteer their DNA. [...]
The definition of what a "voluntary" sample meant was a grey area, Mr Newell said. Being held in custody was inherently coercive."
Probably the only job in the police force I wouldn't turn down: sampling DNA from 17 year olds. Of course in the old fashioned, Jackass "sperm-olympics" way. Copious samples could be donated to the sperm bank afterwards. No point in letting good samples go to seed.

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