4-year mail theft bustedBy Jaymee T. Gamil
Philippine Daily Inquirer
They were “cleaning” the post office in more ways than one.
A janitor at the Philippine Postal Corp.–Central Mail Exchange Center (CMEC) in Pasay City was caught on Wednesday stealing a mail pouch containing more than 22,000 yen and some chocolate bars from Japan.
Rolando Maguddayao, 28, who was hired by PhilPost from the subcontractor Triumph Cleaners and Allied Services, admitted the crime and pointed to a fellow janitor and two casual postal workers as his cohorts, the agency said in a statement Thursday.
He said they had been stealing mail packages for more than four years, PhilPost added.
Maguddayao was caught on a closed-circuit television camera putting an Express Mail Service (EMS) pouch into a garbage bag.
CCTV operator Rodel Gatchalian and postal police Ronaldo Vargas saw him doing this live on video and immediately confronted the janitor.
Maguddayao was turned over to the Southern Police District headquarters in Taguig City. PhilPost withheld the names of his alleged cohorts pending the filing of formal complaints against them for qualified theft in the city prosecutor’s office.
In the statement, Postmaster General and CEO Josefina de la Cruz hailed the “busting of the mail thieves” at the Pasay office.
“Installing those CCTV cameras is one of the reforms that we initiated shortly after we assumed our posts last year,” said De la Cruz, a former Bulacan provincial governor who became the country’s first female postmaster general.
About two months after De la Cruz took over, CCTV cameras at the CMEC office on Naia Road also caught two alleged thieves in action—a postman and a Bureau of Customs examiner—as they opened a package they were inspecting and took an envelope containing 100 euros.