An analyst employed by a crime lab was recently arrested on charges that he stole and sold painkillers, which were to be used as evidence in drug crimes cases. The arrest came after the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) suspected that drugs were missing from the lab. Allegedly, multiple case files appeared to be missing pharmaceutical drugs that had been replaced with over-the-counter medications. The accused analyst must now face his prescription drug trafficking charges in court.
The Department had employed the analyst since 2006. During this time, he handled approximately 2,600 different cases, the majority of which were related to drug crimes. A commissioner employed by the FDLE stated that hundreds of criminal cases may have been hurt as a result of the alleged theft.
The commissioner said that the analyst worked on cases that belonged to as many as 80 different law enforcement agencies from 35 different counties. Agents are reviewing all the cases that could have been compromised by the alleged theft in order to discover how the theft might have affected those cases. Indeed, some criminal cases, which are pending right now, may be thrown out if evidence has been compromised and/or no longer exists.
Although the charges brought against this Florida analyst are exceedingly serious, he will still be able to defend himself against them in court. In fact, it may be difficult for the prosecution to succeed in proving that he is guilty of the charges beyond a reasonable doubt. Barring the prosecution's ability to prove his guilt by competent and relevant evidence, no conviction for the prescription drug trafficking charges can be secured against him.
Source: The Washington Post, Florida crime lab analyst arrested on drug charges, No author, Feb. 4, 2014