COQUITLAM (NEWS 1130) – A targeted investigation by police in Coquitlam working with Canada Post has broken up an extensive mail theft ring.
Police arrested a Surrey couple on October 11, after looking for apparent prolific mail thieves who had been working in the area for months. Heine Hut, 49, is well-known to police, and Charlene Saar, 40, was arrested at his residence in Surrey.
“Hut has been on the police radar for quite some time,” says Cpl. Mike McLaughlin with Coquitlam RCMP. “We have dealt with him in the past for similar offences and it’s alleged that he has been a long time and prolific mail thief who targets Canada Post boxes.”
Hut made a court appearance today (Thursday) and is remanded in custody until his next court date later this month. Saar is going before a judge in early January.
McLaughlin says Hut was known for targeting Canada Post boxes.
“Certainly, part of the allegations here are that the mail was being stolen, so that identities could be stolen and that is a pretty typical M-O for mail theft,” he said.
Both are facing charges of mail theft, posessing stolen mail, posessing a stolen credit card, and unlawfulling using a mail key.
Coquitlam RCMP say mail theft is a common complaint, and offered tips to prevent your mail from being stolen too, including to:
– Collect your mail daily
– Use Canada Post’s hold mail service while you’re away
– File a change of address with Canada Post and advise banks and other companies if you move
If you have concerns about your mail and believe it wasn’t delivered, reach out to mailers to make sure they have your mailing address, and then report it to Canada Post customer service at 1-800-267-1177. You can report suspicious activities to local police.