© 2024
NPR for Northern Colorado
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

FBI Makes Arrest In Decades-Old $7M Robbery Case

The head of the FBI office in Puerto Rico, put a fine point on it: "After 25 years, eight months and eight days, the United States law and order agencies caught up with Norberto González Claudio."

The 65-year-old Claudio, reports Puerto Rico's El Nuevo Dia, has been on the run since the FBI says he took part in the 1983 armed robbery of a Wells Fargo truck in Connecticut. The robbery netted $7 million, which makes it one of the biggest in U.S. history.

The AP reports that last year, his brother Avelino Gonzalez pleaded guilty to conspiring to rob the armored truck and "to transporting the stolen money to Mexico."

Another twist in the story is that Claudio is allegedly a part of a Puerto Rican separatist group called Ejército Popular Boricua-Macheteros. The stolen money, reports the AP, was used to fund the outfit. Puerto Rico's Primera Hora reports the Macheteros are considered a terrorist group by the U.S. government.

Back in 1985, a Connecticut Grand Jury indicted Claudio and 16 other members of the Macheteros. That same year police arrested 14 of them. El Nuevo Dia reports that Claudio didn't put up resistance when authorities arrested him while he exercised.

With his arrest, only one other suspected of taking part in the robbery remains at large. The FBI said Manuel Gerena, who is on the FBI's top ten most wanted list, is thought to be in Cuba.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Eyder Peralta
Eyder Peralta is NPR's East Africa correspondent based in Nairobi, Kenya.