News and Press Releases

Lawyer Admits to Laundering Client’s Drug Profits

April 26, 2011

ALEXANDRIA, Va. – Brian W. Young, 39, of Upper Marlboro, Md., pleaded guilty today to conspiring to launder drug profits for drug traffickers and use some of the proceeds to pay for their representation in court.

            Neil H. MacBride, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; James W. McJunkin, Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI’s Washington Field Office; and Chief J. Thomas Manger, Montgomery County, Maryland Police Department made the announcement after the plea was accepted by United States District Judge Gerald Bruce Lee. 

            Young was indicted on Feb. 3, 2011, and pled guilty today to one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering. He faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison when he is sentenced on July 15, 2011. 

            In a statement of facts filed with his plea agreement, Young admitted that William Cornman sought his advice on how to make his cash from marijuana sales appear to be legitimate income.  After agreeing to launder Cornman’s drug proceeds, Young accepted tens of thousands of dollars from Cornman’s drug sales and invested it in real estate.  In November 2008, Cornman was arrested and ultimately convicted on federal drug trafficking and firearms charges.  After Cornman’s arrest, Young accepted more than $60,000 in cash from Cornman’s drug partners.  After Young deposited most of that money into his law firm’s account, Young then issued firm checks to other attorneys to represent Cornman and a co-conspirator in federal court.  Young asked a law partner to hide $15,000 cash of the remaining drug proceeds, which the partner buried on property in Aquasco, Md.  Young made false statements on two IRS forms documenting the receipt of the drug proceeds in an attempt to make the drug proceeds appear to be legitimate income.

            This case was investigated by the FBI’s Washington Field Office and the Montgomery County Police Department.  Assistant United States Attorneys Kimberly Pedersen and Karen Taylor are prosecuting the case on behalf of the United States.

            A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Virginia at  Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia at or on



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