A 27-year-old man from Geraardsbergen, who worked as a courier for the Dutch postal company PostNL, risks a prison sentence for the theft of dozens of parcels. He sold the loot via the internet. His 25-year-old wife is accused of receiving stolen goods.
The couple AP and CR from Geraardsbergen, both from Moldova, appeared before the criminal court in Oudenaarde for theft on the one hand and fencing on the other. The man started working as a courier for the Dutch postal company PostNL in September 2021. “But since his employment, the employer noticed that many parcels were disappearing on his route,” prosecutor Julie van Hoorebeke explained the facts.
“In April 2022, PostNL reported the theft. A search of the defendant’s house followed and no fewer than 146 packages were found. Further investigation revealed that the stolen goods were sold via the website 2dehands.be. The man told confusing and unbelievable stories and changed his statement several times. That he had found the packages somewhere along the road or that he had bought them in Brussels. His partner played the fool and stated that she knew nothing, which is equally unbelievable.”
The stolen packages contained all kinds of goods, from mobile phones and tablets to shoes and clothing. “My clients were stupid and obviously should not have done that,” lawyer Kris Vincke emphasized. “But these facts fit into the world of modern slavery. The man earned 1,700 euros a month, but he had to work up to 14 hours a day to post up to 200 parcels. He felt he earned far too little. But of course that didn’t mean he should have stolen. It started with one package and that worked. The opportunity made the thief. During the search, 146 objects were seized, 33 of which could be linked to theft.”