Pubdate: Tue, 13 Mar 2018
Source: Morning Call (Allentown, PA)
Copyright: 2018 The Morning Call Inc.


A former Pennsylvania narcotics agent will plead guilty to conspiring
to launder money from a seizure of nearly $1.8 million in illicit drug
proceeds in 2014, federal court records show.

By pleading guilty Timothy B. Riley, a retired state attorney
general's office agent, could be sent to prison for up to 20 years and
fined up to $500,000, according to a plea agreement filed in U.S.
District Court in Harrisburg.

Federal authorities charged Riley, 48, of Philadelphia, on Feb. 23
with accepting three cash payments totaling $48,000, which he knew was
stolen from a drug dealer. Riley then deposited the money and used it
in financial transactions, according to David Freed, U.S. attorney of
Pennsylvania's Middle District.

Riley's plea agreement says he admitted his cut of the laundered money
was supposed to be "greater than $150,000."

The federal charge came nearly two years after The Morning Call
published an investigative story describing how agents in the state
attorney general's office's Mobile Street Crimes Unit seized the cash
at a truck stop outside Carlisle, Cumberland County, in June 2014.

The story, published in June 2016, explained how former Attorney
General Kathleen Kane's administration secretly sat on the confiscated
cash, roughly $1.77 million, for nearly two years as internal
questions were raised about the legality of the seizure and how some
agents suspected money had been skimmed from some of the boxes.
Sources also described how a subsequent federal wiretap, made in 2015,
picked up a drug dealer complaining that the van should have been
carrying more money than agents had registered on official paperwork.

The FBI and IRS determined the van's driver and at least one other
person, who was not indicted, had stolen $800,000, Freed said in a
news release last month.

The Morning Call did not identify Riley by name in its original story
but did say that his relative, Sean Michael Riley, was identified as
the van's driver in a June 16, 2016, seizure petition that state
prosecutors filed in Cumberland County Court to take possession of the

In November 2015, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration's Baltimore
office, using an informant presumably provided by Pennsylvania
authorities, indicted Florida resident Frederick Goldberg on charges
of running a $10 million marijuana smuggling ring. Goldberg remains in
a federal prison in Florida after he pleaded guilty and renounced
ownership of the $1.77 million.

Sean Michael Riley has not been charged with any crimes by the state
attorney general's office, DEA, IRS or FBI, court records show.
Freed's news release did not mention his name.

It only mentioned Timothy Riley's. He was a 20-year Philadelphia
police officer specializing in narcotics investigations before he
joined the state agency in 2008. Riley worked as an agent until Sept.
26, 2014, and officially retired Feb. 26, 2015, according to State
Employee Retirement System records obtained under the Right to Know

Riley is scheduled to be arraigned on March 29 before Chief Judge
Christopher C. Conner in Harrisburg.
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