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Sunday, 8 January 2012

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DNA evidence vital in criminal investigations

Senior Scientist and the Head of Molecular Forensics, Genetech, Dr. Ruwan J.Illeperuma presented his Sinhala book titled "The Use of DNA Evidence in Criminal Investigation" to Justice Minister Rauff Hakeem at the Ministry recently.

Dr. Ruwan J.Illeperuma handing over a copy of his book to
Minister of Justice Rauff Hakeem

This is the first book on the topic written in Sri Lanka in Sinhala. The author is an accomplished scientist in Sri Lanka on DNA based forensic investigation methods. He was awarded doctorate by the University of Peradeniya in 2010 for his research work done on the subject at the University of Washington, USA.

DNA typing has been performed in Sri Lanka for almost ten years. Beginning with a team of scientists in the University of Colombo, DNA typing was first performed for a Civil Court case in 1998 for establishing the biological father of a child. The technology was first used in a criminal case in 1999.

In 2003 Genetech Molecular Diagnostics was founded as a private company for performing DNA tests.

At present, Genetech is the major provider of DNA typing services for the Government of Sri Lanka.

Apart from performing DNA analysis, the scientists at Genetech have been actively involved in educating the public and other active Government's corroborative bodies on the benefits of this technology.

Genetech scientists have conducted workshops and lectures for the police, the armed forces, child welfare officers, judges, lawyers, judicial medical officers and probation officers about the use of DNA technology.

In the field of forensic investigations, the Police are the most important group because they arrive at the scene of the crime first. They have to decide whether there is necessity and possibility of performing a DNA test.

Dr. Ruwan J Illeperuma as the Head of the Molecular Forensics Section at Genetech, has been involved in training of more than six thousand law enforcement officials for the last seven years on the use of this technology.

He has published a comprehensive guide book on identification and handling of DNA evidence in crime investigations.

The present book is the first to be written in Sinhala as guide book for crime investigators in Sri Lanka on DNA technology.

Publishing of this book was funded by the United States Fulbright Commission and the book will be distributed among all police officers who are engaged in crime investigation and also among JMOs.

 

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