Owner of “Mail Drop” Convicted of Manufacturing and Selling Counterfeit Postage

inspector

HOUSTON – Susan Spiegel, the former owner of Postal Connections of America, has pleaded guilty to one count of mail fraud, United States Attorney Kenneth Magidson announced today along with Inspector in Charge Robert Wemyss, of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service (USPIS). Spiegel, 70, of Tomball, admitted she caused a loss to U.S. Postal Service (USPS) of more than $39,000.

Postal Connections was a commercial mail receiving agency, or “mail drop,” located in Houston, which was a private business that acts as an agent for receiving and delivering the recipient’s mail. Spiegel had primary responsibility for the daily operations of the business, to include online stamp purchases.

After examining nearly 2000 individual pieces of outgoing mail, investigators determined Spiegel purchased legitimate postage using her company’s Stamps.com account, duplicated it and applied the counterfeit postage to outgoing mail – which was ultimately delivered by the USPS.

Used and re-used sheets of online stamps and more than 1,000 individual counterfeit postage stamps of various denominations were seized from Spiegel’s business. The oldest duplicated stamp dated back to an original print date in 2009. Over time, the investigation revealed a drastic decline in legitimate postage purchased by Postal Connections from Stamps.com.

“The health and success of the Postal Service depends upon strong and aggressive revenue protection,” said Wemyss. “We will continue to identify and pursue dishonest mailers who deliberately avoid proper payment of postage.”

U.S. District Judge Lynn Hughes, who accepted the guilty plea, has set sentencing for Sept. 23, 2013. At that time, she faces a maximum punishment of 20 years imprisonment and/or a $250,000 fine. In addition, Spiegel faces a forfeiture money judgment in the amount of $39,256.92 for losses incurred by the USPS.

This case was investigated by the USPIS and is being prosecuted by Special Assistant United States Attorney Tammie Y. Moore.

  • sueMe

    fake postage is really what is killing the PO…well after getting rid of prefunding that NO OTHER Fed Govy Ag does.

  • Mr. Postman

    This is a good example of how a private company can make a profit in the mail business.

    Until they get caught.

  • Linda Kafele

    this is what privitization leads to

  • Linda Kafele

    the usps got rid of the dept that was in place to send mail back to customers with fake or reused postage. They lose billions to businesses that pre print their address in the body of the envelope AND the return address sections so that IF mail is returned with fake or NO postage or reused postage,, they get their mail any way. They have been dismantling what works at the USPS for years now.

    • common sense

      Mail with no postage and identical mailing and return addresses goes to dead mail:

      “Matter of any class, including that for which special services
      are indicated, received at either the office of mailing or office of
      address without postage, is endorsed “Returned for Postage”
      and is returned to the sender without an attempt at delivery. If a mail
      recipient attempts to return or forward the mail without paying additional
      postage when required, the mail is endorsed “Returned for Postage”
      and returned to the recipient. If no return address is shown, or the
      delivery and return addresses are identical, or the delivery and return
      addresses are different but for the same person or organization, the
      piece is treated as dead mail.

  • David Miranda

    trusting customers to be honest is another example of idiotic ideas the Postal Service has come up with