An Post sitting on Santa bag full of Christmas cash

An Post in Limerick is sitting on a bag full of Santa money and doesn’t know who to deliver it to.

Cash presents made up of thousands of euro, sterling, US dollars, Australian dollars, and Canadian dollars did not reach their intended destinations due to inadequate postal addresses.

Last week, cash worth more than €2,500 in various currencies was found in “undeliverable” Christmas mail sent to An Post’s national returned letters branch located at its Dock Rd depot in Limerick. And with most Christmas mail yet to be sent, An Post is expecting at least another €5,000 to go astray.

A spokeswoman for An Post said: “Most of the money was in foreign currencies sent abroad in the Christmas mail. However, this mail could not be delivered due to incomplete or incorrect addresses. The postal services in these countries, on seeing an Irish postal stamp, then return it to us and we send it to our returned letters branch.”

All undeliverable mail sent to the Limerick depot is opened under a strict security protocol in order to try to identify the sender.

The spokeswoman said over the Christmas period cash worth up to €7,000 will be found in letters returned to them.

She said: “Usually we come across €100-€200 a week in letters which could not be delivered. But this rises over the Christmas period to thousands.”

All stray mail containing cash is catalogued and the money is lodged in a special bank account. The spokeswoman said: “Most of the money is posted in this country. Some is posted from abroad, but due to a wrong address, somebody moving address or an inadequate address, it ends up in our returned letters branch. People should always put their own address on their mail and, indeed, in some countries mail will not be forwarded unless the sender’s name and address is visible as well as the person it is going to.”

Along with large sums of money at Christmas, the Limerick An Post section is deluged with lost items ranging from hand-knitted baby clothes to Christmas puddings.

The spokeswoman said: “Perishable food items are destroyed. Other items such as clothing, DVDs or toys are held for three months before being handed over to our charity shop section which disperses them fairly to various charities. As well as cash, we hold on to valuables such as jewellery, indefinitely.”


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