A couple from Colorado has been charged with the theft of mail containing tax return and stimulus checks intended for providing financial relief during the COVID-19 pandemic, and the possession of a stolen.

David Alan Gilmore, 31, and Kathleen Lucille Johnson, 40, were presented for arraignment in federal court on Friday after a complaint was filed on late Thursday.

A Traffic Stop Did Them in

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According to the complaint, the duo allegedly was stopped on 17 June 2020 during a traffic stop, initiated by the Arkansas Highway Police. The stop was on account of the fact that the car displayed a stolen license plate from Colorado.

During the stop that was assisted by the Conway Police Department, officers found several bags containing mails. None of these mails were addressed to either Johnson or Gilmore. Inside the bag, the officers found one stimulus check, one tax refund check, and six personal checks. The stimulus check was meant for the provision of relief for the COVID-19 pandemic.

Other Stolen Articles Found

If theft of stimulus checks were not enough, the officers also found 13 debit and credit cards in the car. Again, none of the cards were in the name of Johnson or Gilmore. In addition to the stolen mail and cards, a United States Postal Service key was also found in their possession. The Key is used by postal carriers to access apartment delivery boxes, neighborhood delivery collection box units, and collection boxes

The United States Postal Inspection Service is conducting the investigation. For possessing a stolen postal key, the penalty is not more than ten years in prison. For the charge of theft of mail, the punishment is not more than five years imprisonment. Both the crimes carry with them a fine to the tune of up to $250,000. Along with this, supervised release after imprisonment is not more than three years.