Chris Rowland was sentenced Friday to 28 months in prison and two years supervised probation in court in Nashville.

Rowland pleaded guilty to five counts of money laundering in March, bringing an end to a nearly four-year drama involving drugs, guns and cash.

As part of the plea agreement, six additional charges against Rowland were dropped.

Rowland was arrested and charged with possession of a machine gun and possession of an unregistered firearm, a Rock River Arms .223-caliber machine gun and failing to register it.

Federal agents raided Rowland's home and brother-in-law Jeremy Chad Smotherman's home in September 2007 on Warrior Drive across from Riverdale High School as part of an investigation stemming from a $6 million illegal narcotics operation.

In court documents filed in 2008, Internal Revenue Service Agent William Desantis accused Rowland and Smotherman of money laundering as "sham owners" of real estate and engaging in large money transactions with defendants indicted in a $6 million narcotics operation.

Rowland and Smotherman were accused of filtering drug money from defendants through houses in Hendersonville, Desantis stated in court documents. Both Rowland and Smotherman worked in real estate in September 2007 when and federal agents searched their homes and offices.

Smotherman and business partner Michael Bryan Krabousanos were also indicted and charged in February with money laundering and bank fraud.

Smotherman and Krabousanos entered secret pleas in January 2010 on charges of conspiracy to commit bank fraud, bank fraud, engaging in monetary transactions in property derived from specified unlawful activity and conspiracy to launder proceeds from a specified unlawful activity.

More to come with a full report of court proceedings.

© 2011 The Murfreesboro Post

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