Couple busted after returning to scene of PostShop heist

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The police executed a search warrant on the home of the pair and recovered the post office items minus one courier bag to the value of $5.50. Photo / File
The police executed a search warrant on the home of the pair and recovered the post office items minus one courier bag to the value of $5.50. Photo / File

A couple who stole courier packs and stamps from a post shop returned an hour later to post one of the packs.

Phillip James Morley, 33, unemployed and Kelly Smith, 17, were expecting a baby and had ordered baby clothes online.

After the clothes arrived they needed to return some but they had no money to send them back, their lawyer George Linder, said.

The couple appeared in Westport District Court last week and pleaded guilty to shoplifting charges.

Police prosecutor Sergeant Michelle Payne said that on May 4 the pair went to the Westport PostShop and uplifted courier packs and stamps to the value of $105 without paying for them.

On May 17 police executed a search warrant on the home of the pair and recovered the post office items minus one courier bag to the value of $5.50.

Smith claimed that Morley put the items in her bag and she wasn't aware he had not paid for them.

Smith was also charged with stealing baby items to the value of $121.30 from The Soap Box on May 5, 2016. She was identified on CCTV. Police recovered all the items from their home.

During their search of the couple's home police also found items from four other shops. As the date and time of those thefts could not be established, charges could not be brought but Smith had been trespassed from those shops.

Judge Robert Murfitt remanded Smith until June 30 so she could undergo a restorative justice conference. He said he would not enter a conviction in order to keep all options open.

Judge Murfitt ordered Smith to speak with the probation service about her options.

Morley told the court he did not want to engage in restorative justice with NZ Post.

The judge convicted Morley on one charge of theft and sentenced him to 60 hours community work. He ordered him to reimburse the $5.50 for the used courier bag to NZ Post by 5pm yesterday.

Judge Murfitt said Morley had a previous charge of shoplifting in Palmerston North, and others of breaching home detention and methamphetamine involvement. He said Smith had chosen a bad person in choosing Morley and it was clear he was behind the shoplifting.

- Westport News

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