Police to set up DNA database nationwide

Taj M. M. Ibrahim
Filed on January 20, 2011
Police to set up DNA database nationwide

Abu Dhabi Police is working towards a full-fledged DNA database in the UAE, Colonel Ahmed Al Marzouki, head of the project, said during the Crime Scene Investigation seminar.

While presenting a paper on the project which will cost Dh4 billion, Col Marzouki said the police agencies will collect DNA samples from residents in the UAE — both Emiratis and expatriates — store and keep them as part of the Federal DNA Database.

The project targets the collection of 10 million samples, he added while reading out at the conference themed ‘Investigations of the crime scene: The Way to Justice’, organised by Abu Dhabi Police in association with the British Society of Criminology.

A report carried by the Dubai-based ‘Al Emarat Al Youm’ on Tuesday quoted him as saying that the first phase of the project is to collect 20,000 DNA samples from the saliva of certain categories of people as a trial stage. The DNA of UAE residents, will at a later stage be part of the ID process which will also include proofs of the tooth, iris and face, he added.

Colonel Marzouki said the database will save time and effort for the criminal investigation personnel in detecting the surroundings of the crimes and recognise the identity of the perpetrators.

“It will also be benefited in identifying the corpses, skeletons and victims of traffic accidents’, he noted.

He said: “The project will contribute to make people feel safe by the quick actions taken to reach the whereabouts of the perpetrators, arrest them before committing other crimes.”

“The number of cases handled by the forensic laboratory at Abu Dhabi Police in 2009 exceeded 800, which ranged from murder, suicide, theft and sexual abuse, in which those involved were identified through the DNA test”, he said. Work is underway on forming a coordinating committee for the project where members will be taken from the ministries of interior, justice, health and the Emirate Identity Authority, he said.

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