TribLIVE

| USWorld

 
Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Mass. crime lab chemist charged

Email Newsletters

Click here to sign up for one of our email newsletters.

Daily Photo Galleries

'American Coyotes' Series

Traveling by Jeep, boat and foot, Tribune-Review investigative reporter Carl Prine and photojournalist Justin Merriman covered nearly 2,000 miles over two months along the border with Mexico to report on coyotes — the human traffickers who bring illegal immigrants into the United States. Most are Americans working for money and/or drugs. This series reports how their operations have a major impact on life for residents and the environment along the border — and beyond.

By Reuters
Sunday, Jan. 20, 2013, 6:02 p.m.
 

CONWAY, Mass. — A chemist at a western Massachusetts drug laboratory has been charged with tampering with drug evidence, the second such allegation at a crime lab in the state in recent months, authorities said on Sunday.

Sonja Farak, 35, was arrested late Saturday by state police, authorities said, and charged with two counts of tampering with evidence and two counts of drug possession in separate cases early this month.

The charges came a month after another state crime lab chemist in Boston, Annie Dookhan, 34, was indicted on charges of falsifying drug evidence in thousands of cases. She was arrested in September.

Investigators identified some 10,000 people convicted or accused of crimes based on evidence that Dookhan handled, and state officials said in December that hundreds of people had been released from prison pending new trials in the investigation.

While the new charges raised worries about potential effects on criminal cases containing evidence handled by Farak, authorities tried to minimize such concern, saying a preliminary investigation indicated Farak's activities did not taint any cases.

“On its face, the allegations against this chemist do not implicate the reliability of testing done or fairness to defendants,” Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley told a news conference.

Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.

 

 


Show commenting policy

Most-Read Nation

  1. Fetal parts in Planned Parenthood lab shown in 4th video
  2. Protesters ousted in bid to block Shell icebreaker on Portland river
  3. Feds eye use of federal dollars for ads for for-profit colleges
  4. Minn. dentist laying low in slaying of lion
  5. VA whistle-blowers aghast
  6. Highway bill on Obama’s desk extends funding 3 months
  7. Geological gem The Wave on Arizona-Utah border draws worldwide visitors
  8. OSU band song mocked Holocaust victims
  9. Piece of plant found on island on way to France for analysis
  10. McClatchy: Emails on Clinton’s private server contain Benghazi information
  11. Ex-Cincy cop pleads not guilty, posts bond