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Independent Investigation of tarnished drug lab requested by Mass. Lawyers

In a follow up to a story we discussed last month where a Massachusetts drug lab was shut down over fraudulent activities by its lead investigator a group of defense lawyers along with the state bar have requested an independent review. It sounds like the lawyers want more looked into than just how Annie Dookhan, the former chemist, handled or mis-handled evidence.

There are concerns that this may be just the tip of the iceberg in terms of how cases were managed at the lab. Since peoples freedoms are on the line it seems fair to do a complete and independent investigation of the entire lab to ensure all problems are rooted out. Officials said Dookhan tested more than 60,000 drug samples involving about 34,000 individuals over a nine-year period.

The Attorney Generals office stated they were caught off guard by the request but the State Bar replied that it was not trying to offend anyone. They simply want justice to be served.

Brad Puffer, a spokesman for the attorney general, said in a statement that the office was surprised by the request for an independent investigator. He said the attorney general, who was reviewing the letter, had been working with defense attorneys for weeks to assure a “fair, complete and transparent investigation into the broader issues at the lab.”
Martin Healy, chief legal counsel for the state bar association, said the request was not meant as a criticism of Coakley or her office.
Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/news/crime/article/Mass-lawyers-call-for-outside-probe-of-drug-lab-3978452.php#ixzz2AMBzI9La

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