Texans convicted of massive mail theft sentenced to prison

Reuters News
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Posted: Oct 08, 2014 8:21 PM

(Reuters) - Two Texans were sentenced to federal prison on Wednesday on their convictions on charges that they stole more than 50,000 pieces of mail and removed checks, credits cards and other items they then turned into cash and merchandise, prosecutors said.

Charles Hattenbach, 39, was sentenced to 81 months in prison, nearly seven years, and co-defendant Kathryn Hubbert, 29, to four years in prison, prosecutors said.

Prosecutors said Hattenbach and Hubbert broke into U.S. Post Offices and mailboxes from December 2013 until March 2014, taking the mail and other government property from about 80 cities and towns across Texas.

Hattenbach and Hubbert, of Temple, Texas, pleaded guilty in July and June respectively to conspiracy to steal mail, bank fraud, theft of government property and multiple aggravated identity fraud counts.

The pair deposited stolen checks and money orders and later withdrew cash, taking in more than $80,000, prosecutors said. They also used personal information gleaned from the letters to activate credit cards stolen from the mail and used them.

Hattenbach was fined $6,000, Hubbert $5,000 and the two were ordered to pay $103,720 restitution by U.S. District Judge Walter Smith in Waco, prosecutors said.

Both also will have five years' supervised release after serving their sentences.

(Reporting by David Bailey in Minneapolis; Editing by Sandra Maler)