Reliable forensics

July 6, 2007

John Hemming MP is right to identify failings in expert witness evidence in medical cases ("Expert witnesses: case for the prosecution", Features, June 29). But there is already a formal mechanism for determining what is reliable forensic evidence.

The Council for the Registration of Forensic Practitioners has established a unique position in this regard for some years by a system of rigorous assessment of the competence and accreditation of practitioners.

The register covers a wide range of specialties, including forensic medical examiners and forensic nurses, as well as crime scene investigators, forensic scientists et al. In all, the CRFP register includes more than 2,500 practitioners spanning 25 specialties.

While we have not yet brought the generality of medical experts within the scope of the register, this remains an aspiration for the future.

Michael Goldstein
Chairman, Council for the Registration of Forensic Practitioners

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