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FBI Accuses Baltimore DEA Task Force Member of Embezzlement and Lying: Harms Drug Cases

Crooked  DEA task force member, Mark James Lunsford, a Baltimore police detective, is causing some big problems.  City paper reporter Van Smith lays it all out in this report.

Detective's Skyville, Md. home the FBI raided/ baltimore city paper photo
Balt. Detective’s Sykesville, Md. home the FBI raided/ baltimore city paper photo

By Van Smith
Baltimore City Paper

BALTIMORE —  On Aug. 3, Ira Jimmy Martin was arrested for armed drug dealing in Baltimore City. “Lots of cash [was] recovered in this case,” Baltimore City State’s Attorney’s Office spokeswoman Margaret Burns says.

But on Sept. 24, court records show, prosecutors dropped all six charges against 33-year-old Martin. The reason, according to Burns: The case rested on the honesty of veteran Baltimore Police Det. Mark James Lunsford.

A U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) High-Intensity Drug Trafficking Area task-force officer, Lunsford was revealed in federal court as being accused by the FBI of embezzlement and lying (“Baltimore Cop Charged by Feds with Lying and Embezzlement,” the News Hole, Sept. 24 ) on the same day Martin was let off the hook.

Burns explains in an Oct. 7 e-mail that it “turns out that the drugs [in Martin’s case] were handled at all points by Lunsford only, and so we lost this one. There is no way we could get the drugs in [as evidence in court] due to the taint of the officer.”

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