NFI Inside Out (extended version)

NFI Inside Out (extended version)

(On-screen title: NFI Inside Out. A variety of machines. Someone examines a fingerprint on a screen. There is a wrecked car in the dark. Voice-over:)


VOICE-OVER: The Netherlands Forensic Institute
is one of the world's leading forensic laboratories.
And with over six hundred scientific experts
and expertise in over forty forensic disciplines,
the NFI is unique in the world.

(A woman conducts lab research.)

The NFI applies cutting-edge science
to provide objective, reliable forensic analyses,
analyses that help to find answers to crime-related questions
such as: What happened? And: Who is responsible?

(Parts of a machine are moving.)

By investing heavily in innovation and technology,
the NFI seeks to lay the foundations for the innovative methods and technologies
that will play a key part in tomorrow's forensic investigations.

(Innovation is crucial to ensure we can continue to develop new forensic research methods. Today, for instance, we can extract much more data from minute trace evidence than ever before. That wouldn't have been possible without our innovation programme. Automation and digital technology play a very important role at the NFI.)

(They allow us to increase our capacity, reduce our costs and to avoid mistakes, which is very important in our work. But the use of computers and robots always goes hand in hand with human interpretation. When dealing with complex forensic matters, our human experts are indispensable.)

(Says Arian van Asten. On-screen text: Digital Forensics. Someone removes a mobile phone from a beaker filled with water.)


VOICE-OVER: As society becomes ever more digitised,
the quantity and range of digital traces are growing exponentially.
The NFI's forensic IT experts are pioneers
in the field of optimising techniques and developing new products
to collect, recover and analyse electronic data for legal purposes.
These tools and techniques are dramatically increasing the speed
at which large amounts of digital data can be analysed
and are even making it possible to retrieve and examine data
from files that have been lost, damaged or deleted from digital devices.

(On-screen text: Toolmarks and Micro Analysis Invasive Traumas.)

A key role in forensic science is played by minute traces
that are invisible to the human eye.

(Magnified traces.)

New tools, like the unique mass spectrometer,
enable experts to detect and examine even the smallest traces.
These traces, although they're minute, can be tremendously valuable,
as they can provide answers to the question
of what happened before and during the crime.
For example, whether a particular injury was caused
by a weapon or object found at the crime scene.

(On-screen text: 360 Degrees. Toolmarks and Micro Analysis Invasive Traumas Laboratory.)

(A microscope hangs above a table that gives off light. A man writes notes on a legal pad. Another researcher stands at the far end of the illuminated table. The man is holding a slide showing the tread marks of a footprint. A real pair of shoes is lying on the table in front of him. A colleague in a white lab coat is sitting in front of a computer.)


(A man places an object under a microscope and selects an objective lens. The object appears to be a bone. René Pieterman:)


(Our Infinite Focus Microscope is highly unique. It originally comes from the world of motor-racing. In forensics, we mainly use it for investigating bodies, but also other objects, like knives.)

(We're the first forensic lab to use this microscope for forensic purposes. We use it almost every day for cases here in the Netherlands and sometimes for international cases.)

(For instance, we were asked to help with a serious murder case in Norway, and we were able to put our 3D vision to use. The Norwegian judge was very pleased with this investigation.)

(Two men speak to one another. On-screen text: Forensic Firearms and Ammunition Analysis. A man approaches a cabinet.)


VOICE-OVER: Crime scene reconstruction
is the process of determining or eliminating events and actions
that occurred at the crime scene.
At the NFI's purpose-built premises, forensic firearms experts
can perform a wide range of live fire tests.


(A man aims a rifle and shoots.)

By analysing the crime scene pattern,
the location and the position of physical evidence,
NFI experts can determine whether a given weapon
could have caused the damage found at the scene
at the alleged angle and range.

(On-screen text: 360 Degrees. Gunshot Residue Analysis Laboratory.)

When a firearm is discharged, microscopic gunshot residue particles fly out
and may land not only on the shooter, but on anyone or anything close to the weapon.
Gunshot residue analysis can be very valuable
in helping determine who may have been involved in the shooting incident
and approximately how far the gun was from the target when it was fired.
NFI experts report on the significance of their findings
and whether they could be explained by other activities or by contamination.

(A man enters a hallway. On-screen text: Fingerprint Individualisation.)


One of the oldest disciplines in identifying an individual for forensic purposes,
is fingerprint analysis.
Today new techniques are taking this discipline further.
The most recent improvement, for instance, is the chemical analysis of fingerprints,
which can provide information about a suspect's behaviour.
Is he a smoker? A drug user? Or has he handled explosives?

(Someone examines a fingerprint. Two people in white lab coats enter a room together. On-screen text : Forensic Pathology.)


The discipline of forensic pathology is primarily about investigating deaths
that took place in suspicious circumstances.
It's the forensic pathologist's job to determine the cause of death
and the circumstances surrounding the incident that led to the death.

(On-screen text: 360 Degrees. Forensic Autopsy Room.)

(A man wheels a stretcher into an autopsy lab. A body bag lies on the stretcher. The man and a colleague, both wearing plastic aprons and surgical masks, work together to lift the body bag and place it on a steel autopsy table. On-screen text: Forensic DNA Analysis.)

The past decade has seen a rapid development of new technologies
for DNA analysis.
One unique method developed by the NFI
now makes it possible to create a DNA profile from a trace in only a few hours.
This high-speed examination leads to quick and well-founded reconstructions of events.

(Collaboration with universities is important for an institute like the NFI, where we mainly do applied research. Sometimes you get stuck, you have no match in your database and you want to move on. But the DNA trace can still tell you something about its donor.)

(For example, one important development that started at universities, is the determination of eye colour. Something like that can guide the police and public prosecutor in their investigations, and we're now making it suitable for forensic research. The universities develop the theory, and we put it into practice.)

(Says Ate Kloosterman. People walk in a hallway.)


VOICE-OVER: Crime doesn't stay within a given country,
so fighting crime requires a cross-border approach.
That's why the NFI works closely together with international law enforcement agencies
in many critical areas such as intelligence,
criminal investigations, technical operations and capacity building.

(Nuclear terrorism is a global threat. In fighting this type of terrorism, we're increasingly collaborating internationally. For example, for investigating nuclear incidents, the NFI works closely together with the International Atomic Energy Agency and Interpol. Forensic technologies can help to identify suspects or uncover terrorist networks.)

(NFI's field lab organises training to ensure that, if there is a nuclear incident, international parties can work together as effectively as possible.)

VOICE-OVER: In this way, the Netherlands and the NFI in particular
contribute to international security.
Forensic science is a dynamic field whose scope is expanding all the time.
As a result there is a growing need for more in-depth understanding
of the latest forensic methods.
The NFI contributes to this enhanced understanding
of forensic research and crime scene investigation
by sharing its knowledge and expertise with like-minded institutions.
To this end, the NFI Academy offers a broad range of courses and training programmes
for law enforcement and governmental organisations worldwide.

(Someone opens a door.)

The mission of the NFI and its six hundred professionals
is to strengthen the rule of law, nationally and internationally.
The Netherlands Forensic Institute pursues this mission
through continuous focus on broad forensic expertise,
through development of new technologies
and growing collaboration with partners around the world.