Daily Archives: April 17, 2012

Convicted defendants left uninformed of forensic flaws found by Justice Dept.

Washington Post
Justice Department officials have known for years that flawed forensic work might have led to the convictions of potentially innocent people, but prosecutors failed to notify defendants or their attorneys even in many cases they knew were troubled.

DNA tests aim to identify 17th century figure

Archaeologists have reopened a grave in Switzerland to see if DNA testing can confirm it contains the body of 17th century Swiss hero – and killer – Jürg Jenatsch.

Review Found FBI Hair Analysis Flaws in 250 Cases, But DOJ Didn’t Inform Defendants and Public

American Bar Association
An inspector general’s nine-year review of misconduct at the FBI crime lab found forensic flaws in hair analysis, but the results of the probe that ended in 2004 were revealed only to prosecutors.
The Justice Department did not separately inform defendants whose cases could be affected, including one Maryland man serving a life sentence for a 1981 double killing, the Washington Post reports. Lawyers for the defendant, John Norman Huffington, learned of forensic problems through the newspaper. Prosecutors disclosed problems to the defense in fewer than half of the 250 cases in which questions were raised.

Study reveals ‘extraordinary’ DNA of people in Scotland

BBC News
The DNA of people living in Scotland has “extraordinary” and “unexpected” diversity, according to a new study.