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Lawyer Ken Ravenell, pictured in November 2017, entered a formal plea Wednesday of not guilty to federal charges that he was part of a vast drug conspiracy.
Lawyer Ken Ravenell, pictured in November 2017, entered a formal plea Wednesday of not guilty to federal charges that he was part of a vast drug conspiracy. (Amy Davis / Baltimore Sun)

Prominent Baltimore defense attorney Ken Ravenell entered a formal plea of not guilty at his arraignment Wednesday, nearly a month after federal prosecutors charged him with aiding a vast drug conspiracy.

The plea in U.S. District Court in Greenbelt by the 60-year-old defense attorney from Monkton was a formality, and he and his attorneys have promised a staunch defense. One month ago the U.S. Attorney’s office charged Ravenell with conspiracy to commit racketeering, money laundering and drug distribution, accusing the veteran lawyer of covering up and aiding the crimes of one high-profile client, a Jamaican marijuana kingpin.

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Court records show that prosecutors and defense expect an extensive discovery process as both sides wrangle over mountains of financial documents from Ravenell’s work as an attorney, as well as evidence provided by confidential sources, prosecutors said.

U.S. District Judge Liam O’Grady, who has been assigned to preside over the case, has scheduled the trial to begin Dec. 9.

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