Criminal Justice

Dallas attorney who agreed to launder supposed drug money sentenced to 5 years in prison

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A Dallas attorney was sentenced to five years in prison for laundering money that he thought was involved in drug trafficking, federal prosecutors in Texas said Wednesday.

Rayshun Jackson, 52, is a former criminal defense attorney who managed the Jackson Law Firm. According to the announcement from the U.S. attorney’s office for the Northern District of Texas, he was arrested in April 2021 and pleaded guilty to conspiracy to launder money in September 2021.

Chief U.S. District Judge Barbara M.G. Lynn of the Northern District of Texas handed down his sentence Tuesday.

“The sentencing of Rayshun Jackson marks the end of a successful investigation by DEA Dallas,” said Eduardo A. Chávez, a special agent in charge of the Dallas office of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, in a press release. “Criminal drug organizations need a combination of individuals who are willing to distribute drugs, as well as those who hide and attempt to legitimize profits. Mr. Jackson agreed to launder what he believed to be drug proceeds with DEA undercover.”

Jackson met a person he thought was a drug trafficker but was actually an undercover agent in September 2020, according to prosecutors. A person identified as “Person A,” who allegedly leads an opioid distribution ring, introduced Jackson to the undercover agent. Person A also told the agent that, “Ray is the bomb … He’s a thug, he’s just got a law degree.”

Jackson talked with the undercover agent about how he could “clean” the “dope money,” prosecutors said. He proposed laundering about $500,000 through coin laundries, car washes and other cash businesses, as well as shell corporations each month.

When the undercover agent later brought a black backpack filled with $100,000 cash to Jackson’s office, Jackson agreed to launder the money for a 4% fee and a 1% bonus in cash up front, prosecutors said. The following month, Jackson agreed to the same deal when the agent delivered an additional $300,000 in cash.

Prosecutors said Jackson admitted to knowing “the unlawful purpose of the agreement and joined in it willingly.”

The Texas Supreme Court canceled Jackson’s law license as a result of his federal conviction and prohibited him from practicing law in Texas in November 2021.

According to the Dallas Observer, Jackson has asked to be sent to the Federal Prison Camp in Montgomery, Alabama, because it provides educational, vocational and occupational programs.

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