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What is Mail theft?

What happens if someone steals the package you ordered on Amazon or through the USPS. Recently William J. Paige of Duxbury, Massachusetts was indicted for stealing packages of mail that he was supposed to be delivering. The 32 year old mail carrier, who worked for USPS in Whitinsville is alleged to have stolen mail containing collector’s coins and other items from packages that he was intended to deliver. These packages were stolen between January and February of 2022.

Paige was released on conditions following an appearance in federal court in Worcester on friday august 19th. He appeared in front of U.S. court magistrate Judge David Hennessy.

The legal consequences for package theft by a mail carrier is a sentence can be severe and carry sentences of up to five years in prison, and up to three years of supervised release and along with fines of up to $250,000.

Mail theft is a federal crime as the USPS is a government entity. The federal laws for mail theft extend to each state in the country. Because of this, the consequences for stealing mail or packages are severe. You do not have to physically steal the mail from someone’s mailbox or doorstep in order to face these harsh consequences, if you steal mail by means of embezzlement, fraud or deception. If you destroy or hide someone’s mail, you are also liable for charges of mail theft.

Mail theft is a major national issue, according to a 2019 study, 90,000 packages are stolen each day in New York City.

In addition to packages, important mail such as tax bills, credit card applications, bank statements, checks or money orders, prescription drugs, and other personal identifying information can be stolen. Some of this information could be used to commit identity theft which could bring on additional charges.

Package theft is a form of mail theft and it is punishable by federal or state law. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic there has been an uptick in people making primarily online purchases and in turn, there are porch and apartment package thefts. If you are charged with a federal crime such as mail theft, you could face up to five years in jail. If you are charged with a Massachusetts state crime, your jail time and fines are dependent on the value of the package that was stolen. If the package was worth $250 or less, you face jail time of up to one year and a fine of up to $300. If the packages you stole were worth $250 or more, your potential jail time goes up to three years and fines of up to $250,000. If it is your first offense, your attorney may be able to reduce jail time or petition the courts for community service and probation.

If you have been accused of any crime involving mail theft, it’s imperative that you contact an experienced Boston Criminal Defense Attorney immediately. The Attorneys at Dhar Law, LLP will be happy to talk to you at urgent notice if you are accused of mail theft. We have decades of experience defending serious crimes in court, such as mail fraud, wirefraud and mail theft. We believe in the right to a fair trial and will put the fullest extent of our resources into fighting for our clients. Please do not hesitate to contact us at (617) 880-6155 as soon as possible.


Have you or a family member been charged or arrested? It’s important not to make mistakes early on in your case. Download our PDF on the top 3 things to do to help your defense or if you have been arrested by the State Police or FBI or you are the subject of an FBI Arrest Warrant.

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Heading up the firm, Vikas Dhar is widely recognized as a leader in the New England legal community. An accomplished business litigator and a “Top 40 Under 40” criminal defense attorney, he has also been honored as a New England Super Lawyer/Rising Star in the area of White-Collar Criminal Defense for each of the past six years by Boston Magazine.

I have the power and the skill to be able to save people from themselves. I can be your guide during the darkness. I can hold your hand and navigate you out of the darkness into the light.

— Vikas Dhar
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