Suffolk County judges have freed at least 11 defendants facing drug charges -- almost all with lengthy criminal records -- since early September, in the first wave of what could be thousands of cases compromised by the burgeoning scandal at the state drug lab. All of the defendants were in jail awaiting trial, but judges agreed to release them or drastically reduce their bail because evidence in their cases was analyzed by a chemist accused of altering test results and mishandling evidence.
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