Security personnel would have thought nothing of it and, in fact, they didn’t at the time: Two siblings were captured by security cameras making over $5,000 in purchases at their local Nordstrom. Security footage also showed a third man spending over $1,000 at an Apple store. They were good days for the local merchants, yet these shopping sprees were anything but normal for the actual account holders. Were they random acts or were they somehow connected?
In January 2020, OIG special agents and postal inspectors began investigating several complaints of mailed credit and debit cards that never reached their addressees in New Jersey. Instead, the missing cards were getting hit with fraudulent charges for electronics, gift cards and other high-cost items. As investigators dug through financial records and security footage, they started connecting seemingly unrelated dots.
It turned out one of the siblings was a former postal employee who was fired after he was caught stealing. A former employee would know the ins and outs of the Postal Service, but could he be the prime suspect if he was no longer part of it?