Genetic Database to Help Check Crime

Genetic Database to Help Check CrimeGenetic Database to Help Check Crime

A genetic information database will help check criminals from committing repeated offenses, said Payam Balvayeh, deputy for medical and laboratory affairs at the Iranian Legal Medicine Organization.

According to studies, career criminals commit crimes more frequently than those who lack a criminal history. A genetic information database can act as a “crime prevention tool as it can help check criminals from committing repeated offenses for fear of being caught,” IRNA quoted him as saying

Statistics show that 12 percent of criminals resort to committing crimes within a year of the previous offense and 48% repeat their crimes after a gap of five years, he said. However, with the genetic data recorded, it will act as a “deterrent for career criminals as the database will significantly increase the possibility of repeated offenders being caught,” he added.


Pointing to the successful experience of advanced countries who have managed to reduce crime by establishing genetic banks, the official urged the government to allocate funds for the task.

Statistics show that after establishment of a genetic database system in England the rate of crime decreased by 26%.

“So far, 56 countries around the world have set up genetic information databases,” said Balvayeh, adding that all the required IT infrastructure for setting up such a database are available in Iran and only funding was required. The cost of preparing a single genetic profile was about 6 million rials or $218. An initial budget of 50 billion rials  or $1.8 million will be needed to prepare 10,000 profiles of career criminals in the country in the first phase, as the priority group, he said.  


Career criminals are the priority group to be registered on the database and they will be categorized according to the type of their crimes. “It is up to the data bank’s board of trustees to label the types of criminals,” he noted.

Forensic genetics laboratories have been established in nine provinces and one more will be added by the end of the current year (ends March 20).