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Article updated: 10/1/2012 9:19 AM

U.K. man wrongly charged with rape after DNA error

By

LONDON -- Britain's forensics watchdog says an innocent man spent months in jail on a rape charge because of a DNA technician's "avoidable" mistake.

Adam Scott was arrested after a plastic tray containing a sample of his DNA was re-used in the analysis of a swab from a rape victim by private firm LGC Forensics.

He was charged last Oct. 23 and jailed until the case was dropped on March 7.

In a report Monday, forensic science regulator Andrew Rennison said Scott was an "innocent victim of avoidable contamination." He said the mistake was the result of error "by a technician who failed to follow basic procedures."

Some scientists are concerned that the government's closure of the national Forensic Science Service earlier this year will lead to more miscarriages of justice.

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