Brentwood postman spared jail after he threw out hundreds of letters

A postman has been spared jail for stealing post. Picture: PA/Stefan Rousseau

A postman has been spared jail for stealing post. Picture: PA/Stefan Rousseau - Credit: PA Archive/Press Association Images

A postman who threw away hundreds of letters at a recycling waste depot was spared jail.

Chelmsford Magistrates Court was told that James Misselbrook didn’t like his job and just wanted to finish early and get home to his baby, a court heard.

Misselbrook, 22, who had only been a postman in Brentwood for five months, also threw away letters in his dustbin at home and kept others in his garden shed and car ready to be thrown out, magistrates heard.

On Tuesday, he pleaded guilty to intentionally delaying 1,983 postal packets and to stealing 1,500 packets last year.

In court, Misselbrook, of Albert Gardens, Harlow, a former soldier with the RAF Regiment, said he regretted what he had done.

The court heard that in June 2012 Misselbrook left the RAF - where he wanted to stay - because of a knee injury which coincided with his partner’s pregnancy. He was earning £325 a fortnight with Royal Mail and struggled financially.

He told the magistrates: “I was not in a good place. I had just left the military, where I knew what missing home was like, and prior to joining Royal Mail I had a baby boy.”

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The magistrates imposed a 12-month community order with 150 hours’ unpaid work and costs of £580.

Prosecutor Shelley Webster said on November 22 Royal Mail were contacted by Templebank household waste recycling depot to say staff had found a bin bag containing mail packets.

She said that only two letters had been opened and it was not suggested the defendant had stolen any of the contents, just the packets themselves.

“He said ‘I just don’t like doing it, I don’t particularly enjoy the job I do’. He said ‘I don’t want the job but need the money’,” she said.

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