Joaquin Castro questions whether postal workers broke federal law by hiding mail

Rep. Joaquin CastroJoaquin CastroFormer DNC finance chairman Henry Muñoz: Latinos 'need to lead ourselves' Overnight Defense: Trump says he's leaving Walter Reed, 'feeling really good' after COVID-19 treatment | White House coronavirus outbreak grows | Dems expand probe into Pompeo speeches House Democrats push forward on probe of Pompeo's political speeches MORE (D-Texas) has signaled that the moving of a backlog of mail from San Antonio's main United States Postal Service facility prior to his tour of the building earlier this week could have broken federal mail tampering laws.

“There’s a federal law against any postal service employee doing anything to tamper with the mail or delaying the mail,” Castro told the San Antonio Express-News editorial board Friday. “So right away, that’s a big issue right there. Whether their actions to delay mail or even the incident here in San Antonio with me — if you go move that mail and just keep it somewhere on purpose to hide it from someone, are you delaying mail in violation of federal law?”

Castro toured the facility Wednesday to address the recent delays that have been occurring within the Postal Service due to Postmaster General Louis DeJoyLouis DeJoyJudge orders Postal Service to restore high-speed mail sorting machines Watchdog rips operational changes at USPS Voting rights group files suit against Trump, administration officials alleging voter intimidation MORE's large restructuring of day-to-day operations of the nation's mail service.


Postal union leader Carlos Barrios said that workers were allegedly told to move the mail before Castro arrived to make the situation seem less dire.

A spokeswoman for Rep. Marc Veasey (D-Texas) told the Express-News that a similar thing happened to Veasey when he visited a mail processing plant in Fort Worth.

“Congressman Veasey heard similar accounts from local postal workers during discussions this past week and had a similar experience to that of Rep. Castro’s when visiting a mail processing plant up in Fort Worth today,” the spokeswoman said in a statement.

Barrios told the paper that workers moved about 150,000 pieces of mail and sent them in a trailer to Austin prior to Castro's visit.

“It was an attempt to get it out of the building to give a perception that everything was hunky dory,” Barrios told the paper. “I work there. And I see the mail all the time. They started cleaning things because someone was coming.”