Friday, 14 Jun 2024

DHL driver who ‘couldn’t stop stealing parcels’ ordered to pay £25k

A former DHL delivery driver who stole thousands of pounds worth of parcels from a depot has been ordered to pay back almost £25,000.

Steven Black, 55, from Salford, Greater Manchester, narrowly escaped a jail sentence in March, but has now been ordered to pay up or face nine months behind bars at a proceeds of crime hearing at Liverpool Crown Court.

The judge was told during the hearing that Black had benefited from his dishonesty to the tune of £24,859 and had realisable assets of the same amount.

Judge David Swinnerton ordered Black to pay the sum within three months or face custody, Manchester Evening News reports.

Black was sentenced in March to 10 months imprisonment, suspended for 12 months, and ordered to carry out 15 days rehabilitation activities on top of 70 hours unpaid work

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Black admitted seven theft offences with the court previously hearing he had been employed through an agency as a delivery driver for DHL for about 17 months.

The court heard DHL managers launched an investigation into missing parcels sent by Royal Mint which had been going missing from December 2021.

Their enquiries identified that the parcels were going missing from a depot in Speke.

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Black took items off the conveyor belt without scanning them, leading to his becoming a suspect.

Investigations revealed Black had been repeatedly stealing items including 10 Britannia 10z gold coins worth almost £15,000 and gold jewellery with a value of £23,588.

His haul also included an Omega watch worth £7,400, a £2,000 ring and a cast silver kilo bar worth £715 sent by the Royal Mint.

Prosecutor Kate Morley told the court that as part of the investigation, it was discovered that a computer tablet belonging to Amazon went missing from the Speke depot on April 22 when the defendant was working.

She said: “An investigations specialist at Amazon contacted DHL and reported that the device, although only valued at £89, held a critical unreleased programme which was of value to the company.

“Its intended recipient was an Amazon employee but it was found the device had been registered under an email address of julieblack, who is the wife of the defendant. The tablet has not been recovered.”

The court heard that some of the items were recovered but £20,112 worth are still missing and DHL is liable to pay compensation for items lost or stolen during the courier process.

Matthew O’Neill, defending, told the court in March that his client had no previous convictions, has a new delivery driver job and could not help himself after his initial opportunistic theft.

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