A legal challenge to the DNA database that could force the Home Office to destroy thousands of records begins in the European Court of Human Rights today.

Two men from Sheffield will go before the court in Strasbourg and demand that their DNA and fingerprints are removed from the national DNA database. Both men were arrested and their details were routinely taken. Neither was charged but, as is standard practice across England and Wales, their details were retained on the database.

Lawyers for the two men will argue this violates their privacy and is discriminatory. They argue the men should be treated in the same way as people who have never been arrested and not automatically cast into suspicion.

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