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Principles of Forensic DNA for Officers of the Court

Search and Seizure Issues

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National Institute of Justice (NIJ) (see reuse policy).

The defendant needs the following information:

  • DNA (or bodily fluids containing DNA) may be seized by court order, or as a result of an arrest.
  • Neither the right to privacy nor the privilege against self-incrimination prevents the seizure of DNA.
  • Genetic material left at a place where there is no expectation of privacy may be seized.
  • Refusing to cooperate in a court-ordered DNA test may be admissible as evidence against the defendant at the time of trial (or at sentencing).

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