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.