(Updated) Annie Dookhan plea, resolution to be discussed in court tomorrow
State prosecutors are seeking a jail sentence of up to seven years for the accused rogue state chemist who potentially mishandled tens of thousands of criminal drug samples.
A conference is scheduled for Friday in Suffolk Superior Court during which prosecutors and a lawyer for Annie Dookhan are expected to discuss a potential plea and subsequent recommendation, Dookhan’s lawyer said.
Nick Gordon, a Mansfield-based attorney who represents Dookhan, said on Thursday that both sides will discuss a recommendation during the scheduled conference before a judge.
In court documents filed on Thursday, prosecutors recommended that if Dookhan plead guilty a judge should impose a sentence of between five and seven years in jail followed by a five-year probationary term.
“The gravity of the present case cannot be overstated,” prosecutors from the attorney general’s office wrote in a sentencing memorandum. “The total costs to rectify Dookhan’s actions have climbed into the millions with no end in sight, and the financial aspect does not even address the loss of liberty of affected individuals, the significant deleterious effect on the safety of the public, or the breakdown of public trust in the system.”
Gordon, Dookhan’s lawyer, would not comment further about Friday’s hearing or about Dookhan.
Authorities have accused Dookhan of mishandling potentially tens of thousands of drug samples during her time working as a chemist at the state’s Hinton Laboratory in Jamaica Plain.
A special attorney appointed by Gov. Deval Patrick to review the potentially tainted cases said earlier this year that about 40,000 cases were tied to Dookhan.
She has been charged by the attorney general’s office with obstruction of justice and falsely pretending to hold a degree. She has pleaded not guilty.
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