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Helpless Burnaby condo residents watch as thieves plunder mailboxes

But resident is furious strata council won't release still photos of the thieves over "privacy" issues.
mail theft collage burnaby
These images were released previously by Burnaby RCMP of alleged mail thieves during a previous break-in.

A Burnaby condo building resident says he’s feeling helpless after his building was hit by thieves who plundered their mailboxes.

Bernie (the NOW is protecting his last name because he’s a victim of crime) lives in a condo building in the Highgate area that is part of Edmonds.

Late in March, early on a Monday morning, two thieves broke the entry box on his building and in a few seconds opened the front door and proceeded to the mail area, he said.

There, he forced open blocks of mail boxes and emptied all the contents into a red food courier bag and took all the Amazon parcels in the lobby that hadn’t been picked up yet.

And it was all caught on video, which left Bernie feeling helpless after being shown the recording. 

What he saw was unsettling because it was in his home and that the thieves likely had been staking out the building in advance.

“They took their time, while our cameras recorded them unmasked, hoods up and faces very visible so we were able to give the police the video for their investigation, which may or may not ever happen,” he said.

Bernie is also feeling frustrated because his strata won’t release copies of the images of the thieves to distributed to area residents.

“These guys should be easily found given we have such good images,” Bernie said. “I asked our council to provide the building residents with images of these two, given they had obviously monitored the comings and goings of residents in our building in order to determine to arrive at 5 a.m. on a Monday morning in order that they would not likely encounter residents. Maybe some residents have seen them and even know them, who knows if you don’t ask. I was told we could not release images of their faces to residents in order to protect the privacy of the criminals. What?”

Mail theft is a common problem in Metro Vancouver with the proliferation of hi-rise buildings, even ones that have security systems.

Burnaby RCMP has urged residents to take steps to deter mail thieves, who can use information from stolen mail to commit other crimes like fraud and identity theft.


  • Pick up your mail daily. That will leave thieves who work overnight empty handed.
  • Have mail held or redirected during long absences, or have a trusted neighbour pick it up
  • Don’t let anyone in through the door that you don’t recognize as a resident
  • If you move, file a change of address with Canada Post as soon as possible
  • Report suspicious activity to police immediately
  • If you are the victim of mail theft, consider contacting a Canadian credit bureau company to put a fraud alert on your credit report

“It’s unsettling to watch it on video and see how these two seemed unconcerned about the cameras,” Bernie said. 

Follow Chris Campbell on Twitter @shinebox44.