NZ Post worker sentenced for stealing multiple luxury items from packages
Elijah Kerr, 19, stole thousands of dollars worth of items while he was working at a NZ Post depot in Blenheim.
A Marlborough teenager says stealing thousands of dollars worth of items while working at a NZ Post Depot was the “most foolish decision” he has made.
In the Blenheim District Court today Elijiah Kerr, 19, admitted stealing packages containing items such as an iPhone 12 and custom-made jewellery while working as a parcel sorter.
At the NZ Post Blenheim depot about 4.46am on July 5 last year, Kerr picked up a parcel from the loading bin and carried it to a bench to examine its contents. He took the package to the staff area and placed it in his locker, a police summary of facts said.
Inside the parcel was a pet hair removal brush valued at $35.
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Some time between July 1 and July 31, Kerr used the same method to steal another parcel containing nine watches worth a total of $3000, the property of Michael Hill Jewellers.
Kerr worked at the depot between November 2021 and August 2022, and he told police he stole about 10 separate parcels during that time, containing items such as an iPhone 12, custom-made jewellery and a hand-held gaming device.
A NZ Post spokesperson said Kerr had been employed by an external agency, working at NZ Post on a temporary basis.
The 19-year-old pleaded guilty to charges of theft over $1000 and theft under $500 at Blenheim District Court on May 1, which related to the theft of the watches and pet hair removal brush respectively.
Kerr had been wearing one of the stolen watches when he was arrested, but Police prosecutor Nick Cooke said not all the stolen items were recovered.
“There were other things taken, but, for a number of reasons, police were unable to lay further charges,” Cooke said.
Kerr told his lawyer Sarah-Jane Jessop that stealing the parcels was the “most foolish decision he has made”.
“This has been [a] huge wake-up call for him, and this is the period of his life he mostly regrets,” Jessop said at Blenheim District Court on Monday.
Referring to a probation report, Judge Richard Russell said Kerr’s offending happened after he “started hanging out with bad associates”.
Kerr told the report writer that he got an “adrenaline rush” when he started stealing the parcels. Judge Richard Russell said police became aware of Kerr’s offending as a result of the 19-year-old bragging about it to his friends.
“NZ Post and its contractors are entitled to trust their employees not to steal clients parcels like you did,” he said to Kerr.
Judge Russell sentenced Kerr to two months community detention with a daily curfew of 9pm-5am, 80 hours community work and six months supervision, which would include a special condition to attend an assessment for alcohol and drugs.
Kerr was ordered to pay reparation costs of $1744.