Police hold opened mail as evidence

The Queenstown police will hold hundreds of opened items of mail as evidence and it is still unknown when the mail will be returned to its rightful owners.

Detective Sergeant Brian Cameron told the Otago Daily Times yesterday police still had a ''reasonable amount'' of mail at the station, but could not say exactly how much that was.

''We're still cataloguing and assessing much of it.

''We will have it back to them as soon as practicable, but we are mindful of rules surrounding court evidence.''

Philippa Lynette Lindsay (32), who had been contracted by NZ Post, was arrested on November 9 and charged after police found thousands of items stored in her Frankton home and in a storage unit in Arrowtown.

She has since lost her job and been prohibited from entering any NZ Post store. In court on Monday, police prosecutor Sergeant Ian Collin said there were about 550 opened envelopes at the station.

Police have until January 30 to file court evidence before Lindsay's post-committal appearance on February 14.

She faces one indictably laid charge of stealing mail and parcels between September 1, 2010 and November 9, 2012.