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Tuesday, September 22, 2009

 

Postal worker steals $30,000 in Netflix DVDs

Former postal worker Myles Weathers admits to stealing more than $30,000 in Netflix DVDs mailed through Springfield branch

Jack Flynn

The Republican

September 21, 2009, 8:45PM

netflix.jpg

SPRINGFIELD – A former U.S. Postal Service employee pleaded guilty Monday to stealing more than $30,000 in DVDs mailed to the Springfield branch.

Myles Weathers, a former Springfield resident now living in New York, admitted taking more than 30,000 DVDs sent out by Netflix to customers in Greater Springfield during a one-year period beginning in January, 2007.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Michelle L. Dineen Jerrett said the movie rental company alerted the post office officials that a suspiciously high number of DVDs were disappearing from the Springfield area.

Between 50 and 100 DVDs were vanishing each week at one point, Jerrett said.

An investigation by the Office of Inspector General zeroed in on the night shift at the Springfield branch, and eventually targeted Weathers, Jerrett told U.S. District Judge Michael A. Ponsor.

He was arrested on Feb. 22, 2008 after agents filmed him taking DVDs from packages and slipping them into his backpack, the prosecutor said.

Ponsor said the maximum penalty for mail theft by a federal employee was 5 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. By pleading guilty, Weathers faces significantly less time, between 10 and 16 months, under federal sentencing guidelines, the judge said.

Restitution would be about $38,000, with $36,000 worth of DVDs and another $2,000 incurred by Netflix in extra mailing costs, the prosecutor said.

Sentencing was set for Dec. 23.

Springfield defense lawyer Edward B. Fogarty represented Weathers, who pleaded guilty to a so-called information – a charge drawn up by prosecutors – rather than an indictment handed down by a grand jury.


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