The state drug lab scandal, originally believed to be limited to Eastern Massachusetts, has grown into a statewide investigation, as possible indirect connections between former state chemist Annie Dookhan and prosecutions in Western Massachusetts are explored.
As part of the inquiry into Dookhan’s actions, led by Boston attorney David E. Meier, all district attorneys have been provided with a list of defendants whose cases may have been affected by Dookhan’s alleged altering of drug tests while she worked at a Jamaica Plain lab.
“They’ve put every county on notice that they’ve been affected by Annie Dookhan. We’ve all got, potentially, people in jail based on Annie Dookhan’s work,’’ said Worcester District Attorney Joseph Early Jr., president of the Massachusetts District Attorneys Association.
However, Terrel Harris, spokesman for the Executive Office of Public Safety, said the investigation has not found signs that drug samples in Worcester County or Western Massachusetts drug cases were tainted by Dookhan. The lists, Harris said, include “anyone jailed whose name matched one in a Dookhan case,” which could lead to duplication, or could ultimately have no connection.
Also Tuesday, the state court system said it has assigned judges to sit in special sessions around Massachusetts that will handle cases that may have been compromised. The special session in Suffolk County, which may confront the largest number of potentially compromised cases, will begin Oct. 15.
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