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Local man sentenced to prison, facing deportation, after possessing nearly two kilograms of cocaine, fake driver’s license



PROVIDENCE – A Dominican national, who was detained moments after he claimed a package containing nearly two kilograms of cocaine shipped through the U.S. Postal Service, was sentenced on Tuesday to sixteen months in federal custody and faces deportation, announced United States Attorney Zachary A. Cunha.

Robinson Padilla-Rosario, 38, was arrested in April 2021, moments after he claimed a package at a Providence post office that U.S. Postal Inspectors and Rhode Island State Police determined contained two “bricks” of cocaine powder. The “bricks” were concealed inside a heavily wrapped package whose contents had been wrapped in duct tape, spray foamed, and wrapped again with birthday gift wrap.

According to charging documents, on April 17, 2021, two days after a Postal Service employee was unable to make a controlled delivery of the package to a Providence residence addressed to a “Jose Azcona,” Padilla-Rosario, claiming to be Azcona, retrieved the package from the post office. He was detained as he left the post office and was found to be in possession of a fake Rhode Island driver’s license bearing his photograph, the name Jose A. Azcona, and the address to which the package had been mailed.

Investigators discovered evidence on a cellphone in Padilla-Rosario’s possession that he had been using an app to communicate with a person in Puerto Rico; those communications included an image of the Postal Service redelivery slip for the package containing the cocaine.

Padilla-Rosario pleaded guilty on May 11, 2022, to possession with intent to distribute 500 grams or more of cocaine and using a communication device to facilitate the commission of a drug felony. In federal custody for approximately sixteen months since the time at which he was initially charged, Padilla Rosario was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge William E. Smith to time served followed by two years of federal supervised release. As Padilla Rosario was illegally present in the United States following a prior unlawful entry and voluntary departure in 2004, he has separately been taken into the custody of immigration authorities for the purpose of effecting his removal from the United States.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Ly T. Chin.

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