OIG Agents End Postal Employee’s Drug Trafficking Gig
It’s not uncommon for postal employees to supplement their income with a side job, and the vast majority know not to do it through illegal means. They know it’s not worth losing people’s trust, not to mention one’s livelihood, career, and possible pension. But every so often, a very few risk it all for fast, seemingly easy cash, as one mail carrier did.
In March 2021, using in-house specialized analytics, our special agents identified potential issues on a carrier route. On the surface, it was business as usual: the mail carrier was making deliveries to his assigned route. But our special agents looked deeper and joined forces with our federal and local law enforcement partners. The joint investigation revealed the carrier was scanning certain packages as delivered while pretending to deliver them at various residences along the route. At shift’s end, he smuggled the packages into his personal vehicle and carted them off elsewhere.
Why were there no complaints from expecting recipients? The parcels were never intended for them. And as the investigation broadened, our special agents intercepted packages in the mail that contained cocaine and other narcotics.
One day, as the mail carrier sped away from the post office in his own vehicle with packages in the trunk, local police conducted a traffic stop. They found he was carrying parcels containing almost 4.5 pounds of cocaine — that’s roughly the weight of a 2-liter soda bottle. The carrier later admitted to working with two separate drug trafficking organizations to move narcotics parcels through the U.S. Mail. He delivered some of those parcels to traffickers in New York City.
Investigators soon identified two external suspects working together to ship narcotics across state lines. Our agents identified over 100 suspicious parcels and also intercepted a return parcel that contained a cash payment. And a search warrant of one of the suspect’s residences identified almost 4 pounds of cocaine and over 900 ecstasy and Adderall pills, along with drug paraphernalia, scales, and U.S. currency. But the gig was up.
The investigation determined the mail carrier violated federal bribery and narcotics distribution statutes. By July 2022, the two external suspects were each sentenced to serve six years in federal prison, followed by four years’ supervised release. The mail carrier waived indictment and entered a guilty plea, no sooner resigning from the Postal Service. In August 2023, he was sentenced to serve three years of supervised probation.
If you suspect or know of narcotics trafficking involving Postal Service employees or contractors, please report it to our Hotline.