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DA investigates word of false evidence used in drug arrests

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — A North Carolina district attorney and a police department are looking into cases of false evidence being used in more than a dozen drug arrests, according to a report.
Both Wake County District Attorney Lorrin Freeman and the Raleigh Police Department are investigating, WTVD reported Thursday. A police detective has been placed on leave during the investigation after being accused of using a confidential informant in drug cases where the substances used as evidence turned out not to be drugs.
Freeman said the cases occurred between December and May. According to WTVD, the detective was paying the confidential informant, who promised to tip-off officers to Raleigh heroin dealers. Instead, the informant returned with videos and audio recordings of drug buys with critical clips missing and a substance that lab tests revealed months later wasn’t drugs at all.
After some suspects spent months behind bars, the district attorney’s office began dismissing most of the cases, the report said.
None of the people arrested in those cases pleaded to heroin trafficking charges, Freeman said, but there is one case where her office has told a defense attorney that prosecutors are willing to set aside a conviction for a drug-related plea.

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