Former West Haven City Employee Sentenced to 13 Months in Federal Prison for Stealing COVID-19 Relief Funds
John H. Durham, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, and Matthew Modafferi, Special Agent in Charge of the U.S. Postal Service, Office of Inspector General, today announced that a federal grand jury in Hartford has returned an indictment charging NATHANIEL BONILLA, 31, of Bristol, with three counts of theft of mail by a postal employee.
Bonilla was arrested today. Following his arrest, he appeared via videoconference before U.S. Magistrate Judge Thomas O. Farrish, entered a plea of not guilty, and was released on a $50,000 bond.
As alleged in the indictment, Bonilla, a mail processing clerk at the U.S. Postal Service’s Process and Distribution Center in Hartford, opened mail envelopes with a razor blade and removed cash and dozens of gift cards or prepaid debit cards for his own personal use.
If convicted, Bonilla faces a maximum term of imprisonment of five years on each count.
U.S. Attorney Durham stressed that an indictment is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. Charges are only allegations and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
This matter is being investigated by the U.S. Postal Service, Office of Inspector General and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Hal Chen.
U.S. Attorney Durham encouraged individuals who believe they are a victim of theft related to this case to file a complaint by calling 888-USPS-OIG, or by visiting https://www.uspsoig.gov/form/file-online-complaint.