This week, 74-year-old Boston teach Irina Kristy was accused of turning her Massachusetts home into a meth lab.
Kristy, an adjunct math professor at Suffolk University and lecturer at Boston University, will be arraigned Dec. 21 on charges of "distribution of meth, conspiracy to violate the drug law and drug violation in a school zone." Her son, Grigory Genkin, plead guilty to the same charges Nov. 14 and is due back in court Dec. 20.
The case quickly received media attention due to its similarities to the plot of AMC's Breaking Bad, in which Bryan Cranston's lead character, Walter White, is a high school teacher and father who begins cooking crystal meth in an effort to insure his family's financial security due to an inoperable lung cancer diagnosis.
This isn't the first time Kristy has found herself in trouble with the law. According to an Associated Press report on Nobel Prize winner Andrei Sakharov at the time, Kristy emigrated to the U.S. from Moscow in 1985 after being watched by the KGB and spending some time under house arrest with husband Sergei Genkin. The duo, who were mathematicians in Moscow, fled to the U.S. with Grigory, and calling themselves Soviet peace activists
Authorities began investigating Genkin and Kristy in August of 2010, keeping surveillance over their house in Somerville, MA. In Nov. 2011, detectives, special agents and a hazardous materials team conducted a multi-hour search of the home, where at least two explosive materials were detonated the Somerville Journal reported.
Multiple boxes of pseudoephedrine, cans of solvents and chemicals used for methamphetamine production were found according to the police report.
"Due to the amount of materials and contraband located and seized...It is believed that... Kristy was complicit in the methamphetamine operation," read Somerville Det. Michael Brown's report.
Students from Kristy's Boston University classes have taken to RateMyProfessors.com to discuss the news.
"She is Walter White in disguise," wrote one. "I bet her methamphetamine isn't as pure as it is on Breaking Bad seeing as she is a math teacher."
Another cracked, 'Smoking coke and peddling dope. Everything makes sense now."
Many stuck to her teaching skills, which are rated at a 2.0 in "Overall Quality".
"She is extremely hard to understand. She never answers the problem correctly. I got more confused the more I went to class. NEVER take her unless you absolutely have to. She's a nice lady but gets flustered easily," said one.