Police outsource digital forensic work to unaccredited labs

Market for data analysis called a ‘race to the bottom’, with trials failing because of evidence issues

More than a dozen police forces have outsourced digital forensic investigative work to unaccredited private laboratories in the past year, at a time when a series of rape cases have been abandoned because of problems with digital evidence.

The collapse of four trials within two months because digital forensic evidence had not been shared with defence teams has shaken confidence in the criminal justice system and triggered a review of thousands of rape cases by the Crown Prosecution Service.

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