The U.S. Postal Service Office of the Inspector General, an independent agency within the USPS, is in charge of maintaining the integrity and accountability of America’s postal service, its revenue, assets and employees. The OIG reports to Congress and is under the general supervision of nine governors appointed by the president.

Some statistics provided by the OIG:

1,135 — Auditors, investigators and professional support personnel in more than 100 nationwide offices of the USPS OIG.

1,514 — Number of internal mail theft investigations by the OIG from October 2012, through September 2013.

522,000 — Number of employees working for the USPS.

339 — Postal employees and contractors arrested by USPS OIG special agents for theft, delay or destruction of mail in FY 2013.

2,876 — Total mail theft arrests made by USPS OIG special agents and postal inspectors combined in FY 2013.

5 years/$250,000 fine — Maximum penalties for theft or possession of stolen mail.

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Top targets for mail theft

Traditional: Checks, credit cards, jewelry, and greeting cards with cash.

New:  DVDs, CDs, Home Shopping Network/QVC branded parcels, gift cards, mail-order prescriptions and e-Bay branded parcels.

Source: U.S. Postal Service Office of Inspector General, Office of Investigations

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Northern Hills reporter for the Rapid City Journal.