Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Maryland
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, December 28, 2021
Federal Jury Convicts Baltimore Defense Attorney for Money Laundering Conspiracy
The Defendant Used His Law Firm Escrow Account to Launder Drug Proceeds
Baltimore, Maryland – A federal jury has convicted attorney Kenneth Wendell Ravenell, age 61, of Monkton, Maryland, of conspiracy to commit money laundering conspiracy charge.
The conviction was announced by First Assistant United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Phil Selden; Special Agent in Charge Darrell J. Waldon of the Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation, Washington, D.C. Field Office; and Assistant Special Agent in Charge Orville O. Greene of the Drug Enforcement Administration, Baltimore District Office. The United States Attorney has recused himself from this case.
The trial evidence proved that Ravenell received drug proceeds from clients and associates who engaged in drug trafficking. Evidence was presented that Ravenell also used bank accounts of the law firm where he practiced to launder more than a million dollars and used the law firm’s bank accounts to receive drug payments and make payments to attorneys retained to represent other members of the conspiracy and make various investments on behalf of a drug trafficker client concealing and misrepresenting the source of the funds and promoting the client’s unlawful activity. According to trial evidence, Ravenell also received substantial cash payments derived from drug sales as compensation for laundering money.
The jury acquitted Ravenell of racketeering conspiracy and narcotics conspiracy charges. The jury also acquitted Ravenell and attorney Joshua Reinhardt Treem, age 73, of Columbia, Maryland, on federal charges of a conspiracy to commit offenses against the United States, falsification of documents, and obstructing an official proceeding. The jury acquitted Sean Francis Gordon, age 45, of Crownsville, Maryland, a private investigator who worked for both Ravenell and Treem of those same charges.
Ravenell faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in federal prison for the money laundering conspiracy. U.S. District Judge Liam O’Grady of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, who presided over this case in the District of Maryland, scheduled sentencing for Ravenell on May 14, 2022, at 11:00 a.m.
First Assistant United States Attorney Phil Selden commended the IRS-CI, the DEA, the Maryland Transportation Authority Police Department, the Phoenix (Arizona) Police Department, and the Arizona Financial Crimes Task Force for their work in the investigation. Mr. Selden thanked Assistant U.S. Attorneys Leo J. Wise and Zachary Ray, and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Derek Hines, who are prosecuting the case.