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Massachusetts crime lab scandal explodes
Chemistry World ^ | 4 April 2013 | Rebecca Trager

Posted on 04/04/2013 4:42:15 PM PDT by neverdem

More than 300 convicted inmates have been released from Massachusetts state prisons in the US as a result of the September 2012 arrest and subsequent indictment of Annie Dookhan, who worked in a Department of Public Health state laboratory and allegedly falsified evidence used in criminal cases. Now the scandal has grown with the prosecution of another Massachusetts state lab chemist for tampering with evidence and stealing drugs seized as evidence.

Sonja Farak, who worked at the Massachusetts State Crime Laboratory in Amherst, was charged with tampering with four drug samples stored at the lab on 1 April. In two of the cases, authorities allege that Farak mixed drug evidence samples with counterfeit drugs to hide her theft, and in the two other cases the samples could not be found. She was also charged with cocaine possession.

Attorney general Martha Coakley said that Farak – who was originally arrested in January, just months after the Dookhan scandal broke – ‘violated the trust placed in her’.

Question marks ‘Every case she handled now has a huge question mark around it,’ says Josh Lee, a criminal defense attorney and founding partner of law firm Ward, Lee and Coats. ‘Such an individual is not going to be concerned with good laboratory practices or proper evidence handling and testing,’ he adds.

If Farak was adulterating drug samples to cover up her theft, as she is accused of doing, then that could have influenced the weight of these samples and changed the crime that suspects were charged with. ‘Changing weights changes crimes and can, for example, elevate something from drug possession to drug trafficking,’ Lee notes.

Farak once worked at the same lab as Dookhan – the William Hinton State Lab in Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts. That lab has been closed since August, while the Amherst...

(Excerpt) Read more at rsc.org ...


TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Extended News; News/Current Events; US: Massachusetts
KEYWORDS: anniedookhan; dookhan; drugs; drugwar; farak; forensicchemistry; forensics; forensicscience; jamaicaplain; marthacoakley; massachusetts; sonjafarak; warondrugs; williamhintonlab; wod; wodlist; wosd

1 posted on 04/04/2013 4:42:15 PM PDT by neverdem
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To: neverdem

This stupid “war” on drugs needs to end now. It’s destroying the entire American judicial system and the Constitution with it.


2 posted on 04/04/2013 4:43:33 PM PDT by Lurker (Violence is rarely the answer. But when it is it is the only answer.)
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To: neverdem

What can one expect from Taxachewshits?


3 posted on 04/04/2013 4:43:45 PM PDT by editor-surveyor (Freepers: Not as smart as I'd hoped they'd be)
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To: neverdem

“We need more infrastructure. Like China!” - Sitting Bull


4 posted on 04/04/2013 4:49:44 PM PDT by Viennacon
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To: neverdem

Stop judging that poor woman! After all, this is Massachusetts.


5 posted on 04/04/2013 4:53:05 PM PDT by Zuben Elgenubi
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To: AdmSmith; AnonymousConservative; Berosus; bigheadfred; Bockscar; ColdOne; Convert from ECUSA; ...

Obviously they’re victims of the evil patriarchy. /s

http://www.google.com/images?q=Annie+Dookhan

http://www.google.com/images?q=Sonja+Farak


6 posted on 04/04/2013 4:58:38 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (Romney would have been worse, if you're a dumb ass.)
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To: Lady Jag; pabianice; johnthebaptistmoore; C210N; HenpeckedCon; Makana; cynwoody; Stepan12; ...
FReepmail me if you want to be on or off my Massachussets list.

I never noticed anyone with a Massachussets ping list. I'm not from Massachussets, but I'm trying to start a list for each state that includes a FReeper with a state ping list for that state if that state doesn't have one already.

If I see a story about Massachussets, I want to let you know. This is not expected to be a high volume ping list.

Do any of you have a state ping list for Massachussets? Do any of you want to volunteer and take my Massachussets list with the intent to grow it? Let me know via FReepmail.

7 posted on 04/04/2013 4:58:46 PM PDT by neverdem ( Xin loi min oi)
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To: Lurker

This stupid “war” on drugs needs to end now. It’s destroying the entire American judicial system and the Constitution with it.


I concur!


8 posted on 04/04/2013 4:59:17 PM PDT by The Working Man
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To: Lurker

As bad as drugs are, you can only help people that will help themselves. The cure is obviously worse and far more expensive than the disease. All you can really do is limit employment and government benefits on drug use. Prison is not a deterrent.

Voluntary commitment is the only option.


9 posted on 04/04/2013 5:00:25 PM PDT by ImJustAnotherOkie (zerogottago)
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To: neverdem

My daughter had her car stolen, but it was recovered within 8 hours with a quantity of drugs. The person who stole was charged for intent to distribute but that case never got to court as the evidence was tainted in that crime lab.


10 posted on 04/04/2013 5:10:44 PM PDT by AU72
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To: ImJustAnotherOkie

I’ve seen drug addiction up close and personal, believe me. I strongly believe that deliberately making oneself more stupid than you already are intentionally is a very poor long-term survival strategy. And you’re completely correct.

Make these people suffer for their folly as early and as harshly as possible but not one nickel of support for them. Legalize the crap and sell it in 5 pound sacks at Safeway at market prices, just like booze. If they can pay for it, fine. Smoke, snort, inject, or suppository yourself to Kingdom come. But if you OD or get sick, you die in the street. The only concession “society” makes is tossing your corpse into a standard garbage truck for a trip to the landfill.

In about a year all of the idiots would be dead and the rest of us could go on with our lives.


11 posted on 04/04/2013 5:12:09 PM PDT by Lurker (Violence is rarely the answer. But when it is it is the only answer.)
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To: neverdem

This would be a terrific way to end one of the CSI shows. Have all the results of past seasons be overthrown because one of the main characters was corrupt.


12 posted on 04/04/2013 6:08:47 PM PDT by AD from SpringBay (We deserve the government we allow.)
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To: neverdem

CORRUPTION AND LAWLESSNESS IN MASSACHUSETTS? COLOR ME STUNNED!


13 posted on 04/04/2013 6:54:49 PM PDT by Gay State Conservative ("Progressives" toss the word "racist" around like chimps toss their feces)
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To: Lurker
This stupid “war” on drugs needs to end now. It’s destroying the entire American judicial system and the Constitution with it.

Having worked in the ER of a large,big city,hospital I cannot stress how wrong you are.I could tell you story,after story,after story,after story....after story..of the devastation that drugs cause the users,their families (particularly wives and children) and total strangers that would make the hair on your toes curl.I say we adopt the drug laws of Singapore.You're caught with more than a set amount of a drug and they *hang* you.They don't care if you're Singaporean,Malaysian,Indonesian,Aussie,Brit or American.THEY HANG YOU.And there are no 20 year long appeals scams either.


14 posted on 04/04/2013 7:06:42 PM PDT by Gay State Conservative ("Progressives" toss the word "racist" around like chimps toss their feces)
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To: Lurker

unfortunately that would never happen. Because worse that the war on drugs, is the “recovery” industry, which has forced drug addiction to be characterized as a disease - so just as the government isn’t going to let people with AIDS, etc. lie around in the streets dying, the drug users are not going to be left to their own devices to sink or swim.


15 posted on 04/04/2013 7:16:09 PM PDT by kabumpo (Kabumpo)
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To: Gay State Conservative

I agree with you.


16 posted on 04/04/2013 7:16:57 PM PDT by kabumpo (Kabumpo)
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To: neverdem
I’m shocked! Shocked!!
17 posted on 04/04/2013 9:51:18 PM PDT by MasterGunner01
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To: Gay State Conservative; kabumpo; Lurker
I could tell you story,after story,after story,after story....after story..of the devastation that drugs cause the users,their families (particularly wives and children) and total strangers that would make the hair on your toes curl.

That devastation has come about despite the War On Drugs - and there's no evidence that it would increase if the War On Drugs ended.

And if you were paying attention you have the same stories about the legal drug alcohol; should that drug be banned?

18 posted on 04/05/2013 8:40:37 AM PDT by JustSayNoToNannies ("The Lord has removed His judgments against you" - Zep. 3:15)
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To: Gay State Conservative
Heroin Makes Comeback Among New Addicts in Singapore

October 17, 2011

Heroin abuse among first-time offenders surged to a record high last year, raising fears that the drug is now luring younger users in Singapore.

http://www.thejakartaglobe.com/international/heroin-makes-comeback-among-new-addicts-in-singapore/472143

19 posted on 04/05/2013 11:04:53 AM PDT by Ken H
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To: neverdem

Is there any state in the Union more corrupt to the core than Massachusets?


20 posted on 04/05/2013 11:24:18 AM PDT by IronJack (=)
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To: SunkenCiv

Affirmative Action has its limits.


21 posted on 04/06/2013 3:59:50 AM PDT by 1010RD (First, Do No Harm)
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To: editor-surveyor

Could it be Jamaica?


22 posted on 04/06/2013 4:03:07 AM PDT by 1010RD (First, Do No Harm)
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To: IronJack
We'll always have California.

A similar case.

Ex-lab tech pleads guilty on cocaine charge

{Snip}

Madden told police she had taken home small amounts of cocaine that had fallen out of about five evidence samples and said she used the drug to combat the effects of a longtime drinking problem.

Damned drunks!

23 posted on 04/06/2013 4:19:42 AM PDT by csvset
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To: 1010RD

More like the Dominican Republic’s neighbor to the south...


24 posted on 04/06/2013 9:41:09 AM PDT by editor-surveyor (Freepers: Not as smart as I'd hoped they'd be)
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