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Two Defense Attorneys indicted on conspiracy to create false records

Posted at 9:16 AM, Dec 18, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-18 09:25:48-05

BALTIMORE, md. — On Thursday, a federal grand jury returned a superseding indictment against attorney Kenneth Wendell Ravenell, age 60, of Monkton, Maryland, on federal charges of racketeering conspiracy, conspiracy to commit money laundering, and narcotics conspiracy. The superseding indictment also adds two new defendants, attorney Joshua Reinhardt Treem, age 73, of Columbia, and Sean Francis Gordon, age 45, of Crownsville, a private investigator who worked for both Ravenell and Treem. Charges include a conspiracy create false records and documents and to obstruct an official proceeding in order to protect members of the conspiracy who were under investigation by federal law enforcement and federal grand juries sitting in Baltimore, including Ravenell himself. Ravenell, Treem, and Gordon are also charged with one count of falsification of documents, and obstructing an official proceeding; Ravenell and Treem are charged with two counts of falsification of records in a federal investigation; and Gordon is charged with one count of falsification of records in a federal investigation.

The seven-count superseding indictment re-alleges the charges previously filed against Ravenell.

SEE MORE: Defense attorney Kenneth Ravenell appears in court

The superseding indictment adds four new counts alleging that from May 5, 2013 through December 11, 2018, Ravenell, Treem, and Gordon conspired to conceal, cover up, falsify, and make false entries in a record or document to impede, obstruct, or influence federal investigations into Ravenell and one of his clients and knowingly and corruptly impede official proceedings, specifically a grand jury investigation and federal criminal prosecution of one of Ravenell’s clients and a federal grand jury investigation and potential federal criminal prosecution of Ravenell himself. Specifically, the superseding indictment alleges that Ravenell obtained access to incarcerated individuals, whom he did not represent, and dispatched private investigators, including Gordon, to interview incarcerated individuals and civilian witnesses, so that Ravenell and others at his direction could attempt to improperly influence their testimony, attempt to cause them to execute false affidavits and witness statements which Ravenell knew to be false, and attempt to cause witnesses to withhold testimony from official proceedings.

The indictment alleges that Ravenell, Treem, and Gordon prepared false documents, including an affidavit on behalf of Gordon that had, as an exhibit, the document containing false exculpatory statements that Treem and Gordon had urged the witness to sign, and a letter to a United States District Judge signed by Treem, relating to their interview of the witness. These documents could be used to undermine the witness’ credibility and to provide evidence of a prior consistent statement by Gordon or Treem if either one of them were to testify. The superseding indictment alleges that the letter was sent to the Judge with the intent to impede, obstruct, or influence a federal investigation and prosecution of Ravenell. Finally, the superseding indictment alleges that the false affidavit prepared by Treem with Ravenell’s assistance, and which Gordon executed, was also an attempt to thwart the investigation and prosecution of Ravenell.

If convicted, Ravenell faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in federal prison for the racketeering conspiracy; a maximum of 20 years in prison for the money laundering conspiracy; and a maximum of life in prison for the narcotics conspiracy. If convicted, Ravenell, Treem, and Gordon face a maximum of five years in prison for conspiracy to commit offenses against the United States; a maximum of 20 years in prison for each count of falsification of records in a federal investigation; and a maximum of 20 years in prison for each count of obstructing an official proceeding.

An indictment is not a finding of guilt. An individual charged by indictment is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty at some later criminal proceedings.