New England News
6:00 pm
Mon February 11, 2013

Mass. Chemists Paid to Stay Home Despite Backlog

BOSTON (AP) — Thirteen employees of a now-closed Massachusetts drug lab are receiving full salaries and benefits even though they have been unable to work as an investigation into the actions of one of their fellow chemists continues.

Credit AP File Photo

The investigation which shuttered the lab has focused on chemist Annie Dookhan. Investigators accuse Dookhan of fabricating drug test results and tampering with evidence while testing samples.

WCVB-TV reports that instead of being reassigned to another lab, the eleven chemists and two evidence officers who used to work at the Jamaica Plain lab are being paid a combined total of more than $723,000 a year to sit at home.

The state Inspector General is conducting an investigation into the lab that could take another seven months.

Meanwhile the backlog of drug evidence waiting to be tested had grown to more than 11,500 cases.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.