Postal worker stole money customers used for stamps as part of $18,000 scheme, feds say

A former Massachusetts U.S. Postal Service employee stole more than $18,000 in government funds, including money from customer stamp purchases and fraudulent money orders, according to federal authorities.

Zeon Johnson, 28, of Saugus, pleaded guilty to conversion of government funds and has now been sentenced to time served, equivalent to one day in prison, as well as two years of supervised release, according to a Dec. 1 news release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Massachusetts.

Johnson was also ordered to pay $18,206 in restitution. Johnson’s defense attorney did not immediately respond to a request for comment from McClatchy News on Dec. 4.

The former Marblehead Post Office sales associate stole cash that customers used to purchase stamps and money orders, gave customers voided money orders and issued fraudulent money orders to himself between 2019 and 2020, prosecutors said in court documents.

“In at least one instance, a customer purchased a $1,000 money order, but Johnson provided the customer a money order that Johnson had previously cashed,” prosecutors said. “The customer’s payment failed, and the customer was informed that he would need to resend $1,000 as soon as possible”

Johnson was interviewed by law enforcement in 2020, but he downplayed the extent of his wrongdoing, saying he only took $3,000 in fraudulent money orders, according to court documents.

Johnson’s scheme netted him $18,260.72 in government funds, court documents show.

Marblehead Post Office where Johnson was employed is about 15 miles northeast of Boston.

Employee stole $3 million, forcing layoffs and bonus cuts at Texas company, feds say

Postmaster defrauds USPS of nearly $900K in embezzlement and bribery scheme, feds say

Postal clerk takes checks from Missouri mail, including $500 in birthday money, feds say