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A 30-year-old former bank teller in Virginia reportedly disappeared after a grand jury indicted him on embezzlement charges in 2019.
When police finally caught up to him two years later about an hour from his hometown, prosecutors said he was covered in blood and throwing cash over a railing.
Now Jorge Navarro faces charges in two separate cases relating to $617,000 that went missing from a bank vault in Virginia three years ago and a slew of cocaine and guns found in his North Carolina apartment last month, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Virginia said Wednesday in a news release.
Navarro could not be reached for comment Wednesday. It wasn’t immediately clear if he’s retained a defense attorney.
According to court filings, Navarro first appeared on prosecutors’ radar in 2019 when a grand jury indicted him on charges of embezzlement by a bank employee and passing counterfeit currency.
Prosecutors said in the indictment that Navarro worked for the URW Community Federal Credit Union in Danville, just over the border from North Carolina in Virginia. Between 2017 and 2018, they said he stole $617,000 from the bank’s vault and replaced the money with counterfeit currency “to disguise the theft.”
The indictment was announced in October 2019 and filed under seal, court filings show. Navarro reportedly fled shortly thereafter.
Then on March 31, police in Durham were called to an apartment complex to investigate reports of gunshots. Durham is about 56 miles south of Danville.
They found two men in the apartment — one of whom investigators later identified as Navarro, prosecutors said in a criminal complaint.
“Navarro was covered in blood and fled,” they said. “As he did, he threw money over a railing.”
Police managed to stop him, according to the complaint, and Navarro was taken to a hospital while officers swept the apartment. They reportedly saw handguns, an open safe and blood stains during the sweep.
At the hospital, prosecutors said Navarro told investigators that two men who came to his apartment to replace the carbon monoxide monitors hit him with a gun, tied him up and left behind a black bag with cocaine. When police subsequently searched his apartment, they reportedly found more than 4,700 grams of cocaine, over 1,200 grams of marijuana, a ballistic vest, an electronic money counter, tens of thousands of dollars in cash, a vacuum sealer and vacuum bags.
Navarro later told investigators he sold marijuana and had guns to protect himself, according to the complaint. He also said he used different names because he was wanted for cocaine trafficking in Mexico.
Prosecutors filed a criminal complaint against Navarro on April 1 and charged him with possession with intent to distribute cocaine and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime.