Forensic DNA profiling was introduced as legal and convincing evidence in Dutch courts of law in the late 1980s. Initially it was used to acquit suspects who volunteered a DNA sample, typically in the context of sex crimes. Later, after a special forensic DNA bill was passed in 1994, suspects of severe and violent crimes, like sexual assault and homicide, had to provide a DNA sample; if they refused, the strong arm of the law could enforce the order. In 1997, the Dutch DNA database was introduced. A DNA database compares DNA profiles automatically and constantly, and hence connects subject profiles to profiles obtained from scenes of crime. Therefore, a DNA database produces suspects for criminal investigation. The legislation was amended in 2001, enabling (investigating) judges and public prosecutors to order mandatory sampling of individuals suspected of having committed so-called 'volume' crimes like burglary and car theft. Subsequently, other genetic technologies were introduced to inform criminal investigations. As a result, criminal investigation and forensic genetics became closely interrelated. These transformations from DNA as evidence to DNA as an investigative lead, and its application first in 'severe' crimes and later also in 'volume' crimes, are in accord with a development that has been observed in many jurisdiction over the world, and hence is called the common trajectory (Williams & Johnson 2008: 1). In this book, Tooms analyzes the Dutch trajectory of forensic DNA profiling.
|Place of Publication||Netherlands|
|Number of pages||166|
|Publication status||Published - 2011|