Joseph Graves, a former chemist in a Florida crime lab, has been accused of grand theft, 12 counts of tampering with evidence, and 9 counts of drug trafficking.  He is charged with stealing prescription drug evidence, replacing it with over-the-counter medicine, and selling the stolen evidence.

“The actions of Joseph Graves are disgraceful,” Florida Department of Law Enforcement commissioner Gerald Bailey said.

Officials said Graves’ alleged actions could affect dozens of drug convictions.  Graves worked 2,600 cases for 80 law enforcement agencies in 35 counties and 12 judicial circuits over 8 years.  The investigation began when investigators noticed missing pain pills from the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office evidence room.  The missing prescription pills were replaced with OTC medications.  Investigators determined that each case with missing drugs was handled by Graves.

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