A Gresham, Ore., man who worked as a courier this holiday season has been arrested for stealing packages valued at more than $16,000.
Police began an investigation in early December using the website OfferUp to find and recover stolen property, according to Portland police Sgt. Chris Burley.
During the first two days of that operation, they recovered $15,000 worth of stolen property. They also found that 33-year-old Heriberto Villarino-Zamora was a potential suspect in the theft of several packages that hadn't been recovered.
"They learned he was a private courier, contracted to ship packages for a national retailer," Burley said. "Detectives believed Villarino-Zamora had stolen packages he was supposed to deliver throughout the Portland metropolitan area."
On Thursday, detectives and SERT officers serving a search warrant at Villarino-Zamora's Gresham home found $16,500 worth of stolen items and recovered $4,900 in cash.
He was arrested and jailed for aggravated first-degree theft.
"This does not reflect the high standards we have for delivery service providers," said Amazon spokesman Ernesto Apreza. "We will continue to work with law enforcement as they investigate."
He added that the suspect was contracted to deliver packages through a third party service.
And as for customers who may have had their packages stolen, Apreza said, "If there's an issue, we work directly with customers to make it right. Amazon Customer Service is available to help customers with any matters related to package delivery."