Inspection Service saves mail theft victim’s life savings

From USPS News Link:

Customer Michelle Reyes had received the worst financial news of her life. Her life savings were gone — taken by thieves who stole bank cards from the mail. Fortunately for Reyes, the Postal Inspection Service swung into action, giving this story a happy ending.

When cards for a newly-opened account failed to arrive after two weeks, Reyes contacted her bank and was told the cards had been mailed and were already activated. Reyes’s savings, more than $25,000, were gone. The bank said there was nothing it could do.

Worse still, no one seemed interested in pursuing the case until General Analyst Liz Hansen, assigned to the West Nassau, NY, Domicile of the Postal Inspection Service’s New York Division, stepped in.

Hansen turned Reyes’s case over to Mail Theft Team Leader Ralph Franzese, who called bank officials. They gave him two phone numbers: one used to open the account and another to transfer the funds.

Postal Inspector Yseult Belfort, a member of Franzese’s team, recognized the second number as one used by a suspect she arrested months earlier for mail theft.

Once bank officals learned that a man arrested for mail theft had transferred Reyes’s funds, they returned her savings.

A week later, the West Nassau Domicile received a floral bouquet with a card from Reyes stating: “I’ve never felt so helpless in my life. You went above and beyond, and for someone to do that is so amazing.”

  • Mailer

    It warms the heart to hear a story where white collar crime is investigated, the victim is made whole, and the fraudsters go to jail all in one shot.

    If only the SEC, FTC, FBI and states’ attorneys general were as serious about combatting the widespread scams from the picayune phishing scamsters, the new surge of debt-collection scams all the way up to Fortune 500 executive-level crookedness, then we’d see some real progress.

  • Buz

    This really is good to read. There’ve been so many stories of postal employees stealing from the mail in the past year and here is one that’s just the opposite. Great job, Inspectors!