2 Calgary families say gift cards were pulled from letters in tampering scam

Two Calgary families say they have received cards in the mail in the past few weeks that appear to have been sliced, with the gift cards sent by the families now missing.

The two families do not know each other.

Kat MacAulay said a card for her husband’s birthday was mailed from Cape Breton at the same time and place as a card for her niece in Halifax. Both cards contained gift certificates from MacAulay’s parents.

“We learned that a card sent to my niece who lives across the country had been tampered with,” she said.

“I noticed there was a slot in the side of the card,” MacAulay said. “It was obvious that it was a perfect side-split X-Acto.”

Martha MacDonnell said her mother sent her a card for her birthday, mailed from Shubenacadie, Nova Scotia. The card also contained a $50 gift certificate. Like MacAulay, the envelope had a precise slit on one side. The birthday card was intact. The gift certificate never arrived.

“I would like to see that they take this seriously because it appears to be not an isolated incident,” MacDonnell said.

Martha MacDonnell said her mother sent her a card for her birthday, mailed from Shubenacadie, Nova Scotia. The card also contained a $50 gift certificate. Like MacAulay, the envelope had a precise slit on one side. The birthday card was intact. The gift certificate never arrived.

The two women contacted Canada Post to report the incidents, both said they initially received a quick response that their service ticket had been closed. There was no compensation or further investigation.

Canada Post did not respond to our questions on Tuesday, but in a statement earlier this month responding to a similar complaint, said a possible explanation was that the cards got stuck in a sorting conveyor.

The other complaint, released on May 10, was almost identical, with a birthday card for a six-year-old originally sent from Prince Edward Island.

But the “mechanical damage” explanation does not seem plausible to either MacDonnell or MacAulay.

“(Although) it’s not impossible, I find it hard to believe in this case that it happened,” MacAulay said.

“I think someone opened my mail and took the gift card,” MacDonnell said.

Michael N. Clark