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Fast-food could betray criminals Print
Criminals with an appetite for fast food could be tracked down more easily with a new fingerprinting technique that utilises the salt in their sweat.

Police can now detect corrosion left on metal by finger-tip sweat - the saltier the diet, the more the metal corrodes.

The technique works better than traditional fingerprinting which relies on residue that can be wiped away.

Northamptonshire Police's Dr John Bond, who developed the method, said it had so far been used in four active cases.

He said: "On the basis that processed foods tend to be high in salt as a preservative, the body needs to excrete excess salt which comes out as sweat through the pores in our fingers.

"So the sweaty fingerprint impression you leave when you touch a surface will be high in salt if you eat a lot of processed foods - the higher the salt, the better the corrosion of the metal."

High temperatures
Dr Bond, who is also a researcher at the University of Leicester, said the technique can only be used to find prints left on metal surfaces.

But he said the new method can find prints where traditional fingerprinting would draw a blank because finger-tip residue had been wiped away or obliterated by high temperatures.


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