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Press Release

Businessman Sentenced to Prison for Money Laundering Scheme

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Virginia

ALEXANDRIA, Va. – An Alexandria man was sentenced today to four years in prison for his role in a money laundering scheme.

According to court documents, Michael Bernard Bagley, 51, owned and operated Jellyfish Partners LLC, which he described as a private intelligence company in the Washington, D.C., area that provided operational support to its clients, primarily in Mexico. In January, law enforcement received information that Bagley was recommended as an individual who was capable of laundering the proceeds of drug trafficking. Bagley met on several occasions with individuals he believed were affiliated with a Mexican cartel to discuss his ability and willingness to launder what he believed were the proceeds of drug sales.

To effectuate his scheme, Bagley provided the purported cartel associates with a “Capital Banking Plan,” which described how Bagley would launder over $20 million in drug proceeds through another company. In February, Bagley met with the purported cartel associates and again reiterated his desire to launder the funds and claimed he would take a 10 percent commission on all funds he laundered. In April, in Alexandria, Bagley accepted $50,000 in cash he believed was proceeds from the sale of drugs. Bagley ultimately transferred $45,000 from a bank account in the name of Jellyfish Partners LLC to an account Bagley believed was controlled by the cartel. In May, Bagley again received $100,000 in cash to launder. Over the following weeks, Bagley deposited $90,000 in purported Mexican cartel-controlled funds via a combination of cash deposits, ACH deposits, and a wire transfer. Bagley further claimed that he was also working with the “number one guy” of El Mayo, the leader of the Sinaloa drug cartel. In June, Bagley received another $101,000 to launder.

In total, Bagley accepted $251,000 in funds he believed to be the proceeds of drug sales from a cartel.

G. Zachary Terwilliger, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, and Timothy R. Slater, Assistant Director of the FBI’s Washington Field Office, made the announcement after sentencing by Senior U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis, III. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Jamar K. Walker and Karen L. Taylor prosecuted the case.

A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information are located on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 1:19-cr-263.


Joshua Stueve
Director of Public Affairs

Updated December 20, 2019

Financial Fraud