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FINGERPRINTS AND PHOTOGRAPHS DESTRUCTION

As a Newmarket Criminal Lawyer, I would urge anyone who is charged with a criminal offence to consult a lawyer in their local area. The following is for information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice.

As a Newmarket Criminal Lawyer, I am often asked about how an individual can apply to have fingerprints and photographs destroyed. Upon successful resolution of the individual’s charges, which means no finding of guilt was made, an individual can complete an application that can be submitted at the local police detachment where the charges were laid. However, individuals need to be mindful of the fact that a certain period of time needs to pass before an application can be made to destroy an individual’s fingerprints and photographs. The period of time that needs to pass will depend on what the final outcome was in court and can range anywhere between 5 months to 1 year.

However, not all applications will be granted and the nature of the offence will be one of the most determinative factors in whether the application will be granted. The police in certain jurisdictions have adopted a controversial policy that is currently being litigated, as it arguably infringes on an individual’s privacy rights and Charter Rights to maintain an individual’s private information despite the fact that no finding of guilt was made by the court. If an individual has been acquitted of all charges certain police policies directs them to maintain these records for an indefinite period of time.

Despite an individual being acquitted of a criminal offence and the irreparable harm that directly flows from being charged with a criminal offence, police have now adopted a policy to ensure that harm to an individual’s reputation is never restored.

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