Man Convicted After Gambling Away Money Stolen From Armored Truck

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Associated Press
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HELENA, Mont. (AP) — A Helena man has been convicted of taking $390,000 that was stolen from an armored truck and spending it on gambling, day trading, and travel.

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A federal jury found John Gregory Alexander Herrin, 30, guilty Thursday of interstate transportation of stolen property and eight counts of money laundering. He was acquitted on four counts of money laundering, the U.S. attorney's office said.

U.S. District Judge Sam Haddon ordered that Herrin be held pending his sentencing on May 19. He faces up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

During the trial that began Monday, jurors were told the money was removed from a GardaWorld armored vehicle in November 2013. It happened during a trip that started in Helena, included stops in Missoula and ended with the discovery the money was missing in Kalispell. An internal investigation by Garda was unable to directly implicate anyone in the theft.

However, not long after the money went missing, Herrin's financial situation improved dramatically, prosecutors said. Herrin worked for Garda from 2012 until 2014.

Herrin went to Las Vegas in January 2014, where he made large cash deposits at a casino and bought a $22,600 watch with cash. When he returned to Helena, he deposited a casino cashier's check for $123,500 into his bank account along with $37,350 in cash — for a total deposit of nearly $161,000, prosecutors told the jury. Herrin's account had a $945 balance at the time.

After a second trip to Las Vegas in June 2014, when Herrin deposited $50,000 into a casino account and lost it all, he went to his bank with a shoe box full of $20 bills, which he believed to be about $120,000. During both deposits he told the bank teller he'd hit it big in Las Vegas and both times appeared to hide from Garda couriers who walked into the bank while he was there, prosecutors said.

Herin also deposited $111,000 into an Ameritrade account and had significant stock losses, although he told bank employees he was making money day trading, prosecutors said.

In March 2014, Herrin traveled to France with a woman, charging the more than $20,000 cost to a credit card.

By early 2015, Herrin owed nearly $18,000 on his credit card and his car was repossessed, prosecutors said.

Herrin was indicted in October 2016, but the indictment wasn't unsealed until November 2018, when Herrin was arrested. The trial was delayed while Herrin unsuccessfully appealed Haddon's denial of his motion to suppress some evidence in the case.

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