BALTIMORE – A fired Philadelphia officer pleaded guilty Thursday in federal court to conspiring with corrupt Baltimore police officers who funneled illegal drugs to him to sell on the streets of Philadelphia.
Eric Troy Snell, 34, was a Baltimore officer before he joined the Philadelphia Police Department. He originally pleaded not guilty to a conspiracy charge and was in the middle of a jury trial in Baltimore when he admitted to taking drugs from a Baltimore detective to then be sold by Snell’s brother in Philadelphia, reported The Inquirer Daily News.
Snell had been with the Philadelphia Police Department for three years when he was fired late last year after being charged in the Baltimore corruption case.
He is scheduled to be sentenced on Jan. 30 in Baltimore by U.S. District Judge Catherine C. Blake. He faces a maximum of 20 years in prison.
Eight members of the Baltimore Police Department Gun Trace Task Force have been convicted as a result of the corruption investigation.
“Prosecuting law enforcement officers is painful, but necessary if we are to restore the public’s trust in our justice system. No one is above the law,” Maryland U.S. Attorney Robert K. Hur said in a statement Thursday.
From October 2016 through June 26, 2017, Snell conspired with Jemell Rayam, a former detective with the task force, to sell drugs seized by Baltimore officers. Snell and Rayam attended the Baltimore Police Academy together. Snell left the Baltimore force in 2008, according to the Inquirer.
On Oct. 3, 2016, Rayam and other detectives recovered nine ounces of cocaine thrown out of a vehicle during a high-speed chase in Baltimore. As a result, Snell offered to have his brother sell the cocaine in Philadelphia.
A few days later, Snell agreed to distribute heroin for Rayam. Afterward, Snell deposited half of the $2,000 he made from drug sales in Rayam’s bank account, prosecutors said.
In another deal, Snell deposited $2,500 into Rayam’s bank account.
In a plea letter, Snell admitted that he was involved in the sale of other narcotics as part of the conspiracy.