Latvia

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Overview

Latvia enacted legislation in 2004 establishing their national DNA database, which can contain profiles derived from crime scene stains, as well as from samples taken from anyone convicted or suspected of any “recordable offence”. The police are empowered to coercively collect genetic samples from suspects and convicted offenders. Both genetic profiles and the samples from which they were derived are retained for seventy-five years. According to Interpol, Latvia's DNA database contained 1,842 crime scene DNA profiles, 32,222 reference DNA profiles from individuals, 13 missing persons' DNA profiles, 435 unidentified human remains DNA profiles and 226 other DNA profiels in 2011.

Resources

  • Press articles

Detailed Analysis

I. Law on Point

Law on establishing and usage of the National DNA database (adopted on July 7, 2004, and entered into force on January 1, 2005).[1],[2]

II. Entry Criteria

Convicted or suspected of any recordable offence and all crime scene stains[3]

There are no restrictions to the entry of DNA profiles which are derived from unidentified crime scene stains. The DNA profiles of crime suspects and convicted offenders can be entered into the database when they are suspected or convicted of any recordable offence.

III. Sample Collection

The police have the authority to coercively take a DNA sample from crime suspects and convicted offenders. There are no restrictions to the collection of DNA samples which are found at crime scenes. The police are allowed to take a DNA sample from minors and mentally ill persons.

IV. Removal Criteria

Convicted persons’ and suspects’ profiles are retained for seventy five years after their entry and crime scene samples are kept until they are identified[4]

The DNA profiles of crime suspects are stored in the database for seventy-five years. This provision is also valid for crime suspects who are acquitted. Convicted offenders’ DNA profiles are also stored for 75 years. The DNA profiles which are derived from unidentified crime scene stains are stored in the database until they are identified.

V. Sample Retention

All samples are kept for seventy five years[5]

All regulations regarding the entry and removal of DNA profiles are also valid for the DNA samples from which they were derived.

VI. Database Access

Information Centre of the Ministry of the Interior responsible for technical operation (hardware) and is a holder of technical resources (servers etc.) and State Police Forensic Service Department which holds the DNA data base and all information kept in it (user).

Only members of the State Police Forensic Service Department have full access rights to the information that is stored in the database. Others, such as law enforcement officials with permission from a prosecutor and judicial authorities, can submit a written request for information. Online access to the database is only possible from within Forensic Service Department. Requests for the international exchange of DNA profiles must pass through the State Police International Cooperation Department.

It is planned to obtain CODIS system

As the DNA data base is not functioning yet the answer cannot be given.

References

  1. E.U. 9445/1/06 at 7.
  2. [CHECK STATUS] The following Draft Regulations of the Cabinet of Ministers are prepared and waiting for approval: (1) Regulation on procedures for submitting information to the DNA data base and collecting of DNA samples; (2) Regulation on procedure for submitting to the DNA data base and registration of information on relatives of missing persons; (3) Regulation on procedure for obtaining information from the DNA database.
  3. See EU Current Practices at 61.
  4. See EU Current Practices at 61.
  5. See EU Current Practices at 61.