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News Maryland Baltimore Crime Beat

Bank teller, drug trafficker plead guilty to money laundering conspiracy

The head teller at a Perry Hall bank and the reputed leader of a drug trafficking organization pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court to a money laundering conspiracy, court records show.

According to a copy of their plea agreements, Deanna Bailey was a member of a drug ring that moved at least 500 pounds of marijuana from the "southwestern United States to Maryland for the purpose of distributing it for profit once it arrived." The government alleges Bailey was head of the organization - she says she was only a member, records show.

But for a period of two years, both sides agree, Bailey came to the M&T Bank in the 8200 block of Harford Road and asked head teller Sabrina Nicole Fitts to convert drug proceeds from small bills to $100 bills, according to the plea agreement. Fitt took a one percent fee for the transactions, netting at least $5,000.

Federal law requires transactions involving more than $10,000 to be reported and filed with the Internal Revenue Service, which did not occur. 

Records show $319,000 in cash was found in May during a West Baltimore apartment connected to Bailey, where police also found a handgun, digitcal scales and 10 cell phones. 

The full scope of the investigation is not revealed in court papers, but in a separate forfeiture filing, prosecutors say Bailey was found with $52,500 in cash in Sacramento, Calif. in January. 

Fitts is scheduled to be sentenced in December; Bailey will be sentenced in January. 

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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