INTERPOL welcomes new DNA legislation in Belgium

11 April 2024
Updated legal framework will expand the use of INTERPOL databases

LYON, France – Belgium has enacted a new law considerably boosting its ability to solve cases of missing or unidentified deceased persons.

Until now, officials in Belgium were restricted from sharing DNA profiles to international databases for criminal missing persons investigations, essentially limiting their ability to find answers abroad.

The new legislation explicitly allows for profiles collected in Belgium to be searched and stored in INTERPOL’s DNA and I-Familia databases for cases of missing persons, relatives of missing persons and unidentified human remains. It will also enable the use of more systematic searches, adding a new layer of cooperation and ensuring all possible avenues have been explored.

“This new law is an important achievement. It not only sends a clear message to other countries looking to evolve their policing practices and benefit from increased information exchange, but more significantly it will also help get answers for families” Jürgen Stock, INTERPOL Secretary General
Dr. Pierre Van Renterghem, Director General of the National Institute of Criminalistics and Criminology (left) and INTERPOL Executive Committee Vice-President Peter De Buysscher (right)

Welcoming the legislation, Director of International Police Cooperation with the Belgian Federal Police and INTERPOL Executive Committee Vice-President Peter De Buysscher said, “Amendments can and should be made to national DNA legislation – it’s an inevitable part of innovation and globalization. This change to the law will bring a global aspect to national investigations.”

With the new database connections now in place via I-24/7, INTERPOL’s secure communications system, additional data is starting to flow between the National Central Bureau in Brussels and the General Secretariat.

Countries involved

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