Former U.S. Postmaster Sentenced to Prison for Role in Cocaine Conspiracy
PITTSBURGH - A former United States postmaster and resident of Glassport, Pennsylvania, has been sentenced in federal court to four years imprisonment and five years supervised release on his conviction of conspiracy to distribute kilograms of cocaine, Acting United States Attorney Soo C. Song announced today.
United States District Judge Arthur Schwab imposed the sentence on Joseph Borrelli, age 49, of Glassport, Pennsylvania.
According to information presented to the court, between 2011 and 2015, Dante Lozano of Brownsville, Texas shipped dozens of cocaine packages, totaling approximately 8 kilograms (about 18 pounds), via the U.S. Postal Service to Jeffrey Turner and April Racan, who were living in the Elizabeth/McKeesport, Pennsylvania area. Borrelli, who was Postmaster in West Newton, Pennsylvania at the time, aided the conspiracy by advising Turner how to minimize the chances of their drug packages being detected by law enforcement.
The addresses of vacant homes were provided to Turner by Borrelli, and Turner then emailed these to Lozano, so that the packages could bear valid addresses. Borrelli also opened an untraceable post office box for Turner, and intercepted drug packages when they arrived at the post office, delivering them to Turner. These packages were usually intercepted by Borrelli before they went out for delivery by the mail carrier.
Prior to imposing sentence, Judge Schwab stated that Borrelli abused his position of trust as postmaster to aid the drug conspiracy.
Eight individuals were named in this indictment. Three others were previously sentenced, and four defendants – including Lozano, Turner, and Racan – will be sentenced in April and June.
Assistant United States Attorney Gregory J. Nescott prosecuted this case on behalf of the government.
Acting United States Attorney Song commended the United States Postal Service in Pittsburgh, the Drug Enforcement Administration in Brownsville, Texas, and the Pennsylvania State Police for the investigation leading to the successful prosecution of Borrelli.