Met Police forensic scientist appears in court charged with mishandling laboratory evidence



A Met Police forensic scientist who is accused of mishandling laboratory evidence for nearly ten years today appeared in court.

Ursula Collins, 41, (above) is charged with eight offences of misconduct in public office between 2008 and 2019.

She appeared at Southwark Crown Court via videolink and did not enter a plea.

Issues of disclosure of evidence in the case were discussed in front of Judge Deborah Taylor.

Leon Kazakos, representing Collins, said full disclosures by the CPS were not yet complete and asked for an adjournment. Judge Taylor said: "I have adjourned this case until the 30th of April, you are granted unconditional bail in the meantime." The charges against Collins say: "you wilfully and without reasonable excuse or justification misconducted yourself in a way which amounted to an abuse of the public's trust in the office holder." It is claimed she "failed to create and store exhibits in accordance with required procedure, failing to request DNA analysis of a sample, misleading the officer in charge of the investigation in relation to the sample being submitted and causing an undue delay."

The Met referred the case to the Independent Office for Police Conduct in 2018, which ordered a local investigation be carried out by the force's Directorate of Professional Standards.