Missing birthday cards led to arrest of Louisiana postal employee, feds say

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When a postmaster in Bogalusa, Louisiana, noticed numerous birthday cards sent from his office in October 2020 were never delivered — and that a courier had been spotted stuffing greeting cards down his pants — an investigation was launched, prosecutors say.

Court documents show a Louisiana man who was a letter carrier for the United States Postal Service was identified as the culprit behind hundreds of missing greeting cards and other parcels meant for residents on his delivery routes. He pleaded guilty to theft on Tuesday, Aug. 2, in front of a district judge.

After the tip, agents with the USPS Office of Inspector General set up a surveillance operation using a piece of bait parcel containing a card and $200, court documents show. The mailman was arrested after prosecutors say he opened the envelope and used some of the cash to buy cigarettes.

The man told agents he had stolen about 100 cards and $500 from the mail to buy drugs, feds say. After a vehicle search, the OIG reported finding more than 800 letters, several mail parcels and gift cards, approximately 11 large envelope flats and other items.

McClatchy News reached out to his lawyer and did not immediately receive comment.

Bogalusa is a city near the Mississippi border, about 75 miles north of New Orleans. The former postman’s sentencing is set for Nov. 1. He could face up to five years in prison and/or a fine of up to $250,000.

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