Report: Nearly 12,000 criminal suspects evade forced DNA testing

DNA collection kits (Photo: Wikimedia Commons/wellcomeimages)DNA collection kits (Photo: Wikimedia Commons/wellcomeimages)

Almost 12 thousand criminal suspects managed to not give a DNA sample after being arrested. This mostly involves thieves and assaulters, but also dozens of murderers and rapists, RTL Nieuws reports based on their own research.

Every person convicted of a serious crime is obliged by law to give a DNA sample to the Public Prosecutor. The DNA sample is given to the Netherlands Forensic Institute, who turns it into a DNA profile and ads it to the DNA database. There the DNA profiles are compared to traces found in other criminal cases, and if there is a match the suspect can be arrested.

That some suspects do not give a DNA sample came to light in the investigation into the murder of former politician Els Borst. Bart van U. only came into the picture as a suspect in Borst's murder after he was arrested for murdering his sister and was forced to give a DNA sample, which matched traces found in Borst's case. Van U. was previously convicted for illegal firearm possession, but never gave a DNA sample. If he did, he may have been arrested as a suspect in Borst's murder much sooner and his sister's murder 11 months later may have been avoided.

The Heokstra committee's investigation into this case revealed that many more convicted criminals never gave a DNA sample.

RTL Nieuws got figures from the Ministry of Security and Justice which show that on January 1st of this year, the police were looking for 11,620 convicts who never gave a DNA sample. The largest part of these people, 3,792 of them, were convicted for a single theft. 1,402 were convicted for abuse. It also includes 71 assaulters, 18 rapists, 52 people convicted of human trafficking, 10 murderers and 68 people convicted of manslaughter.