(WASHINGTON) — A former FBI agent has been charged with obstruction of justice, falsifying records and drug possession, the Department of Justice announced Friday.
Matthew Lowry, 33, had been assigned to the FBI’s Washington, D.C. Field Office and was a member of the Cross-Border Task Force, a DOJ press release says. As a member of that task force, Lowry participated in numerous seizures of narcotics, and in 2013 and 2014, the DOJ alleges that he tampered with heroin evidence seized during multiple of his investigations.
In multiple instances, the DOJ says, Lowry “went to the [Washington, D.C. Field Office]’s Evidence Control Center and removed seized heroin from evidence, writing on a chain of custody record a false explanation for his taking of the evidence.” Further, the department accused Lowry of keeping the drugs in his car and using the heroin over a period of weeks or months before returning it — cut with either the supplement Creatine or the laxitive Purelax to account for the weight discrepancy.
Lowry is also accused of improperly keeping and using heroin following undercover, controlled purchases of the drug from targets in his investigations. After cutting the drug with Creatine or Purelax to account for the weight, he had other agents sign as a witnessing official and falsely noted that the evidence bags were sealed the day of the seizure.
In one undercover heroin purchase, Lowry is accused of simply never turning in the evidence and ingesting the heroin.
If convicted, Lowry could face up to 87 months in prison, three years of supervised release, and a fine of up to $16 million.
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