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Police: Protests — Question

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 3:00 pm on 2nd June 2009.

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Photo of Lord West of Spithead Lord West of Spithead Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Security and Counter-terrorism), Home Office, Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office) (Security and Counter-terrorism) 3:00 pm, 2nd June 2009

My Lords, we have gone somewhat off the Question but I am happy to talk to this specific issue. We have come up with various proposals where, yes, we are looking at a shorter time for a lesser offence than for the more serious offences. A consultation document is out which we will be discussing. A bigger issue in the DNA area is our view on holding and keeping samples. My own view is that it puts no indication of guilt on anybody. I am happy for my sample to be held by someone. Some people argue that it is helpful to have a composite and full database of DNA, while others argue that it is not a good idea. If we are keeping only the profile and not the actual samples, I see no risk in that at all.