Thanks to the White Rose blog for bringing this Daily Telegraph article by author Alexandra Campbell, about the stress of having to prove her innocence when accused of a theft , based on CCTV "evidence".
If she had not been friends with a solicitor, and did not have witnesses who could prove that she could not have been the person allegedly identified by a private CCTV system, she could easily have been convicted of a crime she did not commit.
The voluntary procedures which were supposed to govern the use of the private CCTV system which was used as "evidence" in the allegation were flouted, but this only highlights the fact that there are no enforcable legal regulations which govern such CCTV surveillance systems in the UK.
Her fingerprints and arrest details remain on the police files, despite the police dropping the charges. Having to go to the vast expense and disruption of going to court to prove one's innocence is an injustice in itself.
The police force's interpretation of the Data Protection Act 1998 and its policy on Data Retention of fingerprints also needs to be questioned in the light of the Bichard Inquiry into the handling of "soft" and " hard" criminal intelligence records following the notorious Soham murders case. Is this Data Retention policy consistent throughout every police force in the country - almost certainly not.