Mailman charged with theft of Costco rebates


SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 Utah) –  For three years, certain Costco customers never got their rebates that come in the mail.

The Utah County Attorney’s Office now knows why.  And so does the United States Postal Service.

“We received a complaint about potential theft of Costco executive membership rewards certificates,” said John Masters with the U.S. Postal Service.

The postal service learned those rebates were disappearing from mailboxes in American Fork.

Their investigation revealed for three years, $72,374 in Costco certificates never arrived.

“In March of 2017, we identified a person of interest that may be involved in this issue,” said Masters.

It was one of their own, a mailman was accused of taking those Costco certificates.

Qihua Wang was charged this month with four counts of mail theft which are  second and third degree felonies.

According to the charges, Huang “took Costco rebate checks from the mail on his route and used them to purchase items for himself.”

“He was terminated,” said Masters.

A corporate spokesman for Costco wouldn’t say how this could go undetected for three years.

“Unfortunately, we are not able to respond with specifics regarding this case.
However, please know that Costco has always been committed to taking care of our members.”

The spokesman said customers can go to any service desk at their local Costco warehouse to report missing rebates.  They also provided a toll free number: 1-800-774-2678.

State consumer officials said if you’re expecting something in the mail and didn’t receive it, take action.

“They should reach out to the business,” said Danniel O’Bannon, director of Utah’s Consumer Protection.  “But also feel free to contact the Division of Consumer Protection or other government agencies to get help to find out what’s going on.”

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