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First thing to check is the user's details. When you create a user through the graphical tool, one of the options usually is "Receive System Mail" or something similar. Also check the MAILTO variable set in /etc/crontab and see if it points to test_user.
What about checking /var/log/mail? It should report about every mail activity and tell if messages to root are forwarded to a local user for some reason. Please provide other useful information about the OS running on your machine (you can put this on your LQ profile, so we can see it in the box on the right of your posts) and the mail service. If in doubt try the following command to find out:
netstat -anp | grep LISTEN | grep :25
to see which process is listening on port 25 (mail) on the localhost.
Moreover, have you tried to send a mail to root from test_user's command line? Is it correctly received?
Ok. Maybe I'm wrong but it does not look like a mail problem, in the sense the mail service works and it probably acts following some "hidden" configuration. Another thing that comes in my mind (since mails are re-directed to the local user) is the presence of a .forward (hidden) file in root's home.
Regarding the crontab issue, not all systems send cron mails on a regular basis. On Fedora you will get a "Log Watch" mail every day, whereas on OpenSuse you get... nothing. I don't know about Debian. Anyway, even if Debian sends mail to root, they are forwarded to the local user in this case.