Forensic Genetic Genealogy Leads to Arrest in Decades-Old Boston Rape Cases: Former Attorney Charged

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Boston police have apprehended Matthew J. Nilo, a former attorney, in connection with a series of rapes in Boston. Although the crimes took place several decades ago, identification of the suspect was made possible with new forensic genetic genealogy techniques. 

The now 35-year-old Nilo would have been 20 years old when the crimes were committed.

He is facing charges of three counts of aggravated rape, two counts of kidnapping, one count of assault with intent to rape, and one count of indecent assault and battery, as reported by the Boston police.

The Boston Police Department, with assistance from the New Jersey Police Department, and the Boston FBI office, apprehended Nilo in New Jersey. 

According to police, the sexual assaults occurred on August 18 and November 22, 2007, and on August 5 and December 23, 2008, within the Charlestown neighborhood of Boston.

At a press conference, Boston Police Commissioner Michael Cox highlighted the investigation. “This arrest culminates the investigation that employed the use of genetic genealogy from recovered evidence. All four cases are DNA connected.”

Forensic Genetic Genealogy 

Commissioner Cox emphasized the instrumental role played by sexual assault evidence collection kits. And the persistence of detectives who did not give up on identifying the suspect throughout the investigations.