People have always appreciated getting their mail on time. Though millennials aren’t as attached to the mail industry as a whole, still roughly 36% of people under the age of 30 look forward to checking their mail each and every day. When the mail doesn’t show up, however, that hopeful and exited feeling quickly turns to worry — especially if there are signs of foul play.
Recently, from New York City and New Jersey all the way down to South Florida, there have been various theft accusations pertaining to the United States Postal Service.
According to ABC 7, money, gift cards, and personal information have been stolen from United States Postal Service (USPS) mail across Long Island and New Jersey.
The USPS Office of Inspector General is currently investigating multiple reports of cash and gift cards being stolen from people’s mail on the East Coast.
Nancy Burtchell, of Huntington, even said that thieves stole birthday money that was meant for her 13-year-old son.
“He was very disappointed,” she said. “My youngest son cried.”
Matthew Modafferi with the USPS Office of Inspector General confirmed that the agency has received multiple complaints from residents during the recent months.
“All allegations received by the USPS OIG are vigorously investigated and prosecution is pursued on the federal, state and local levels,” Modafferi added.
Though outside criminals are likely behind the majority of the recent mailing scandals, USPS employees aren’t off the hook, either.
The entire U.S. economy loses an estimated $7.4 billion each day due to improperly filled out time sheets. When postal inspectors or postage workers are looking to game the system and earn some extra cash, that usually comes at the expense of the innocent.
According to Easy Bay Times, an ex-Post Office supervisor who worked for the USPS for 32 years was caught — on camera — stealing $3,000.
Virginia Villegas admitted to misappropriating postal funds, which is a misdemeanor, and has since been sentenced to three years probation and ordered to pay back the stolen money.
“She was a dedicated postal employee for more than half of her life and her foolish actions not only ended her career with the USPS, but also strained and ended lifelong relationships with the people she worked with,” said Steven Kalar, federal public defender.
Her attorney added that her theft was an “impulsive” decision that was primarily motivated by financial hardships.
If someone needs to file an official complaint with the United States Postal Service Office of Inspector General, it’s important to note that it must involve one of the following:
- Destruction of mail by Postal employees
- Injury compensation fraud
- Theft of items from the mail by Postal employees
- Embezzlement and financial crimes
- Whistleblower reprisal
- Contract fraud
- Internal affairs
- ESPS employee misconduct
- Computer crimes