ALBUQUERQUE â€“ This afternoon, a United States District Judge sentenced Yolanda Vallejos, a 48-year-old resident of Albuquerque, to a two-month term of imprisonment to be followed by three years of supervised release for her conviction for theft of federal government property. Vallejos also was ordered to pay $97,025.44 in restitution to the United States Postal Service (USPS), the victim of Vallejosâ€™ criminal conduct. Vallejos is required to surrender to a federal correctional institution to be designated by the U.S. Bureau of Prisons within 60 days.
United States Attorney Kenneth J. Gonzales said that, on December 20, 2010, Vallejos plead guilty to an information charging her with embezzling $80,710.73 from the USPS through the use of fraudulent money orders between December 2005 and August 2007. At the time, Vallejos was employed as a lead sales and service associate at the USPS Airport Station in Albuquerque.
In her plea agreement, Vallejos admitted that, from November 26, 2005 through August 14, 2007, she engaged in a pattern of entering into the USPS computer system fraudulent postal refunds to non-existent customers in order to reduce the amount of cash that had to be in her drawer. As a result of this unlawful conduct, Vallejos stole $16,314.71 in USPS funds from her cash drawer.
Vallejo further admitted that, from December 5, 2005 through August 14, 2007, she issued at least 261 fraudulent USPS money orders with a value of $80,710.73 to herself or for her own use and benefit. Vallejos deposited many of the fraudulent money orders into her bank account, without paying for the money orders.
On August 14, 2007, the USPS placed Vallejos on emergency suspension, and she resigned her employment with the USPS on May 2009.