An unlicensed D.C. cannabis delivery service owner pleaded guilty on Tuesday to laundering around $3.5 million made by selling cannabis products under the guise of a licensed delivery service.
CEO Connor Pennington, 39, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit money laundering after he directed and green lit a scheme in which he and other business associates within his company, JointVentures LLC., deposited cash in denominations less than $10,000 into several bank accounts they operated.
The deposit method is one commonly deployed by those wanting to avoid triggering scrutiny from banks.
The company operated as a delivery service of cannabis products under the name “Joint Delivery,” though the entity was never licensed as a medical marijuana operator anywhere. In addition to flower, the business sold vape cartridges, wax, and edibles.
“JointVentures operated the distribution and delivery side of the enterprise out of a residential building in downtown D.C. and delivered its products to customers using delivery drivers or cyclists,” the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia stated in a release.
The office added that the business generated “nearly $1.5 million in 2018 alone. By 2021, in just the first three quarters of the year, JointVentures generated well over $2.3 million in revenue. ”
Pennington’s sentencing is set for May 2 as he faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison, though actual sentences for federal crimes are typically less than the maximum penalties.