Postman given 12 month suspended sentence for Exmouth post thefts

PUBLISHED: 15:06 05 October 2016

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A former postman has been spared jail for the theft of more than 1,000 packages from Exmouth’s sorting office

Sean Tootell, 33, pleaded guilty at Exeter Magistrates’ Court this morning (Wednesday) to stealing packets containing book vouchers, gift cards and cash between November 2015 and July this year.

Chairman of the magistrates Hilary Drew sentenced Tootell to 12 months in prison, suspended for two years.

She told him: “It was a serious breach of trust. There was a level of planning and sophistication and it was over an extended period as well.

“You had no previous convictions and now you have got a very big conviction on your record.”

The court heard how Tootell began working at the Royal Mail sorting office, in Church Street, in January 2014, but it was not until November 2015 that he started stealing post.

After Royal Mail noticed a high level of ‘loss’ from the Exmouth office, an investigation was launched.

The company set up test runs in June and July this year and it was during this time that Tootell was identified as the culprit, magistrates were told.

Prosecutor Felicity Payne said that Tootell was moving post to his section of the sorting office before removing the items he wanted.

A probation officer told the court how Tootell’s relationship with his partner had broken down and, in an effort to pay debts, he had taken to gambling and credit cards.

The court also heard that Tootell had admitted to drinking to excess for a period.

Tootell was sentenced to a total of 12 months in jail, suspended for two years, for stealing a total of 1,037 packets. One contained a book token and another an Amazon gift card.

He was also ordered to pay court costs of £120 and compensation to Royal Mail of £93


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