An accused killer whose $100,000 bail was revoked last year after he allegedly threatened a witness was allowed to leave jail based on forged court papers that showed a new bail of $10,000, officials said.

George Suarez, 35, whose 1983 conviction in the murder of an elderly pharmacist and a customer at a Brooklyn drugstore was overturned on a technicality, left Rikers Island jail Dec. 17, but officials only found out Thursday when he failed to appear in court for his retrial, said Ruby Ryles, a Correction Department spokeswoman.She said a woman, whose name was not released, had paid the $10,000 bail in cash.

Suarez' lawyer, Harold Weiswasser, said he learned of the escape when he walked into Brooklyn state Supreme Court Thursday and Justice Ronald Aiello asked him where his client was.

"I thought the judge was kidding me," he said.