Samuel Goldberg has been a Massachusetts criminal defense attorney for 20 years. Prior to that, he was a New York state prosecutor. He has published various articles regarding the practice of criminal law and frequently provides legal analysis on radio and television, appearing on outlets such as the Fox News Channel, Court TV, MSNBC and The BBC Network. To speak to Sam about a criminal matter call (617) 492 3000.

UNIVERISITY OF MA REVEALS THAT CHEMIST AT CENTER OF STATE DRUG LAB SCANDAL DID NOT HAVE THE EDUCATION AND TRAINING SHE HAD CLAIMED HAVING…SHE LIED (AGAIN)

Apparently, Annie Dookhan (hereinafter, “Exchemist”), the chemist at the center of the Commonwealth’s drug lab problems, may have been estranged from veracity for longer than we thought.

As you would imagine, in order to even get her job at the lab, she had to show that she was qualified. She had to be educated in the field. And she was…so she said. Her resume indicates that she had a master’s degree in chemistry from the University of Massachusetts Boston.

That was fine…until the University of Massachusetts Boston became aware of the claim. Now that Exchemist has achieved some amount of infamy…the school has learned of it.

They show that the claim is not true. Close, though. She did request an application for the program…she just never completed it. Apparently, her education ended in 2001 when she finished undergraduate school.

Of course, falsifying a resume is not perjury, per se. After all, the resume is not under oath. Unless it is part of an application which is under the threat of perjury.

Which her job application was.

But that’s ok. testifying on the stand, while under oath, is perjury. We now know that she did that about her alleged degree on at least one occasion in August, 2010.

Of course, that may not be a big deal to someone who apparently was lying about so much else under oath for the last previous years.

Attorney Sam’s Take On Criminal Crime Fighters

As you know, I have combined the odyssey of Exchemist with the history of Detective Johnson earlier this year to ask, “and we believe that this is the only time this has happened….why?

I want to ask this without any of my usual sarcasm…both these things came to light within the same year. In both cases, we are taking the word of each of them as to how widespread the problem is. What the parameters were of their wrong doing.

In each case, the powers that be have decided not to bring criminal charges…at least, not yet.
In the meantime, non-employees of law enforcement are arrested for such crimes all the time.

And yet, in neither case, no matter how much we learn about the fooling said powers that these two found so easy…we hear nothing about independent checks to see what other such folks are out there…what safeguards are being instituted.

Is the bottom line here that, in order to enjoy a prosecution-free life of crime, one must work for Massachusetts law enforcement?

“Sam, let’s not lose perspective here. Isn’t what Exchem did just a technicality?”

No. We now know that she falsified evidence. In other words, took drugs and added them to samples which were negative for the presence of drugs, and so claimed that whoever had had said sample possessed illegal drugs.

“So, in other words, if she had testified truthfully, a jury might not believe the Commonwealth’s cases beyond a reasonable doubt? Is that the point?”

Only one piece of the point. The Commonwealth, if knowing and revealing this truth, would never have been able to go to the jury because it would have had NO evidence of a crucial element in the criminal charge…that the substance the defendant possessed was illegal drugs.

The matter would have had to be dismissed long before a jury got the chance to vote.

As for lying on her job application…that is the type of lie that might simply prevent a jury from believing her beyond a reasonable doubt. And, if the jury did not believe her beyond a reasonable doubt…then the jury would vote “not guilty”.

For the original story upon which this blog is based, please go to http://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2012/09/25/chemist-center-state-drug-lab-scandal-did-not-have-master-degree-she-claimed-umass-officials-say/dGyMOLgULvS4ag94f8pjLN/story.html?event=event12

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