Transnational Exchange of Forensic Evidence

Carole McCartney

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


Policing and judicial cooperation across international borders is now an expectation, with strategies to combat terrorism, organized and serious crime, as well as domestic crime problems, increasingly incorporate the exchange of forensic information and intelligence between nations. While networks of policing cooperation are not novel, their powers and capabilities have been growing in recent years and bilateral and multi-lateral agreements to exchange data between countries continue apace. With increasing demand for, and mechanisms enabling the extra-territorial exchange of evidence under mutual legal assistance, as well as direct law enforcement exchange of data there are increasing numbers of criminal investigations where evidence may have been collected, examined, or interpreted in a different country. Since the Prum Treaty of 2005, the exchange of DNA profiles, dactyloscopic data (fingerprints) and vehicle registration data has become both automated, and mandatory across the EU. This exchange of evidence, highlights some of the wider issues raised by the exchange of scientific evidence for use in criminal proceedings undertaken in a different jurisdiction from that where the evidence emanated. Such exchange mechanisms raise not just technical issues, but questions of principle that need consideration as the international exchange of forensic information and intelligence is set to increase exponentially.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEncyclopedia of Criminology and Criminal Justice
EditorsGerben Bruinsma, David Weisburd
Place of PublicationLondon
ISBN (Print)978-1461456896
Publication statusPublished - 2014


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