Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Two Postal Carriers And Marijuana Organizations Charged With Bribery privateofficer.com

Philadelphia PA Jan 18 2017 - Acting United States Attorney Louis D. Lappen today announced three indictments[1] that collectively charged postal carriers Steven C. Williams, 42, and Felicia Charleston, 35, with using their positions as United States postal carriers to distribute large quantities of marijuana to conspiring with Chester Wynter, 49, Barrington Russell, 44, Damion Parkes, 44, Gillion Watson, 32, Marvia Shirley, 32, Patrick Purrier, 38, and Anthony Washington, 27.
In each of the three indictments, Williams was charged with conspiring with members of marijuana organizations to commit bribery, bribery of a public official, and conspiring with the members of the marijuana organizations to distribute at least 100 kilograms of marijuana. According to the indictments, Williams was a postal carrier at the West Market Post Office in Philadelphia and was responsible for delivering United States Postal Services’ packages to addresses in West Philadelphia, which included 48 N. Hobart Street and other addresses in West Philadelphia. Williams allegedly used his position as a postal carrier to divert packages from the addressee to Wynter, Russell, Parkes, Purrier and Washington for the purposes of distributing the marijuana contained within the packages, in return for cash. In two of the three indictments, Charleston was similarly charged with conspiring with members of marijuana organizations to distribute at least 100 kilograms of marijuana. According to these indictments, Charleston also worked at the West Market Post Office in Philadelphia and was responsible for delivering United States Postal Services’ packages to addresses in West Philadelphia, but she left her postal route to divert packages from the addressee to Wynter, Russell, and Washington for the purposes of distributing the marijuana contained within the packages.
According to the indictments, once the packages were delivered to Wynter, Russell, Parkes, Watson, and Shirley at 48 N. Hobart Street, and to Purrier and Washington at various locations in West Philadelphia, these marijuana conspiracy members distributed the marijuana to their customers.
Based on the quantity of the marijuana involved, the defendants face the following sentences:
Williams – a statutory maximum sentence of life imprisonment, a mandatory minimum sentence of ten years’ imprisonment, and a $28,500,000 fine
Charleston – a statutory maximum sentence of life imprisonment, a mandatory minimum sentence of ten years’ imprisonment, and a $20,250,000 fine
Wynter and Russell – a statutory maximum sentence of life imprisonment, a mandatory minimum sentence of ten years’ imprisonment, and a $10,500,000 fine
Parkes - a statutory maximum sentence of life imprisonment, a mandatory minimum sentence of ten years’ imprisonment, and a $10,250,000 fine
Watson and Shirley - a statutory maximum sentence of life imprisonment, a mandatory minimum sentence of ten years’ imprisonment, and a $10,000,000 fine
Purrier - a statutory maximum sentence of 65 years’ imprisonment, a mandatory minimum sentence of five years’ imprisonment, and a $5,750,000 fine
Washington - a statutory maximum sentence of life imprisonment, a mandatory minimum sentence of ten years’ imprisonment, and a $12,500,000 fine.
 “This indictment is a great example of how our different law enforcement partners can combine resources to combat corruption within the federal government," said Acting United States Attorney Louis D. Lappen.  "The U.S. Attorney’s Office will continue to investigate and prosecute postal service and other federal employees who undermine the integrity of government operations through bribery and other unlawful conduct.”
“The vast majority of the Postal Service’s 600,000 employees nationwide are dedicated, hard-working individuals worthy of America’s trust," said Monica Weyler, U.S. Postal Service Office of Inspector General Special Agent in Charge, Philadelphia, PA.  "However, a very small number of them choose to violate that trust by engaging in misconduct or criminal activity. Special agents with the U.S. Postal Service Office of Inspector General work with other law enforcement agencies to find those employees, investigate them, and seek their criminal prosecution and removal from the Postal Service, as we did in this case. To report criminal activity or serious misconduct by postal employees, contact USPS OIG special agents at 888-USPS-OIG or www.uspsoig.gov.”

The case was investigated by the United States Postal Service, Office of Inspector General (USPS-OIG), Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Border Enforcement Security Taskforce (BEST), and the Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General, Bureau of Narcotics Investigations (BNI) and is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Anita Eve and Tomika N.S. Patterson.
Press Release

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