Montana postal worker sentenced to house arrest for $14,000 theft

The Associated Press reports that Gregory Kemp, a former employee of the Bonner, MT post office, has been sentenced to 90 days of house arrest after pleading guilty to the teheft of over $14,000 from the USPS. Kemp was also ordered to repay the money he stole.

From the US Attorney’s office:

From mid-September until December 2, 2010, KEMP, then an employee at the Bonner Post Office (“BPO”), failed to remit or deposit the proceeds from the sale of 59 postal service money orders. He embezzled the funds by: (1) imprinting money orders on the office money order imprinter with various dollar amounts; (2) cashing the money orders without remitting payment; and (3) failing to report the sale of money orders to Postal Service customers and embezzling the cash from the sale of these money orders.

KEMP admitted to the theft of 11 money orders, totaling $2,397, which he accomplished by creating false entries in the post office records by making the money orders payable to himself.

In addition to those 11 money orders, there are 48 additional suspect money orders, totaling $10,516.32, that were negotiated and cashed. The funds from the sale of those 48 money orders were not remitted to the Postal Service and the money orders were not reported as sold. Those money orders can be linked to KEMP since they were either issued to KEMP to sell to customers or he was working at the Post Office the day the money orders were imprinted. In addition to the money orders, KEMP also admitted to stealing unquantified, yet admittedly small, amounts of cash from his assigned cash drawer. He also admitted to frequently taking stamps out of the other BPO employees’ cash drawers and the main BPO stamp stock. In the Postal Service accounting system, stamp stock is regarded as cash. Two December 2010 audits of the BPO revealed overall shortages of $1,342.17 in the employees cash drawers and the main stamp stock. The total aggregated Postal Service loss that can be attributed to KEMP is $14,255.49. On December 2, 2010, KEMP tendered his resignation to the BPO Officer in Charge.

When interviewed on December 2, 2010, KEMP admitted to stealing Postal Service domestic money orders from his co-employees’ assigned cash drawers by using a small pry bar to defeat their key locks and gain access. KEMP explained that his motivation for committing the crime was his addiction to prescription painkillers, and that when his legitimate supply of pills dwindled, he devised the plan to steal BPO money orders. He said he would imprint the stolen money orders using the BPO’s manual imprinter, cash them, and use the money to buy more pills from an unidentified third party.