Chicago Mailman Steals $275K in Charitable Donations

A job delivering mail for the U.S. Postal Service is probably a bad fit for a kleptomaniac. Carrying around hundreds of pieces of mail every day would present a grab bag full of temptation.

On Thursday, postal worker Frederick L. Taylor admitted in federal court that he stole over $275,000 from a charity by pocketing thousands of envelopes from his route in Berwyn, the Chicago Sun-Times reports. Taylor pleaded guilty to one felony count of possessing stolen mail.

Taylor started working for the Berwyn Post Office in 1999. According to prosecutors, Taylor would open mail while sitting in his postal vehicle, then pocket any money he found. Last year, authorities found the money Taylor stole from 25,000 donors in his Chicago home.

The stolen mail contained cash, checks, credit card payments and money orders meant for a charity. Authorities haven’t yet disclosed the name of the charity organization involved.

Taylor was arrested and charged with possessing stolen mail. He pleaded guilty to that charge on Thursday.

The crime is exactly what it sounds like. Any person who steals, receives, or possesses stolen mail can be charged with the theft or receipt of stolen mail. Taylor could face up to 5 years in prison or a $250,000 fine. He’s expected to be sentenced on Nov. 19.

“It’s unfortunate that a postal employee would consider stealing mail from anyone, let alone a charitable organization,” Scott Caspell, an agent with the Chicago Office of the USPS, told CBS News. “The vast majority of postal employees are honest, hard working public servants whose daily efforts instill trust in America’s postal system.”

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