I’m a fan of the CSI television series. I particularly admire how they use technology to solve crimes, especially how they use fingerprints and DNA to identify a suspect in short time. While I appreciate that this is a television series and none of what is being depicted is reality, I sometime wish our justice system would someday aspire to using hi-tech tools to increase our conviction rates.
However, I have noted that we are taking steps to emulate some of the basic tools used in this television series. On Friday in Parliament while piloting the Miscellaneous Provisions (Administration of Justice) Bill, 2014,the Attorney General Anand Ramlogan said the state is moving to make it compulsory for all deportees to be finger-printed upon entry to this country and for their records to be kept, in addition to more reforms to DNA sample collection. The legislation proposes certain cases where fingerprints and DNA will be taken without consent.
Compulsory fingerprinting will also take place in situations where there is evidence linking fingerprint impressions at crime scenes to potential persons related to inquiries.
In relation to DNA samples, the definition of such samples is to be clarified; and samples are to be kept far longer, as long as 20 years, because of the possibility of cold cases being solved.
I am particularly hopeful that we now putting in place measures to use technology to our advantage in the fight against crime. This is a very commendable approach Attorney General.