Man arrested in largest robbery in history of Coral Gables arrives in Miami

Raonel Valdez fled to Belize in 2012 after granted bond

By Amanda Batchelor - Senior Digital Editor
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MIAMI - A Cuban national accused of stealing nearly $3 million worth of gold in Coral Gables arrived in Miami Wednesday afternoon to face charges in the United States.

Raonel Valdez was arrested in Belize in March, after nearly a year and a half on the run in what is considered to be the largest robbery in the history of Coral Gables.

Police say Valdez and two accomplices allegedly attacked a courier at gunpoint in October 2012 as the victim, George Villegas, was transporting about 110 pounds of gold flakes to an Opa-locka refinery.

Valdez was arrested two weeks after the heist, but disappeared after he was granted bond.

Police say $2.8 million worth of pure gold was stolen in the heist. Meanwhile, the gold that was stolen is still missing, and it appears unlikely it will ever be returned.

The company responsible for it did not insure it and will have to absorb the major loss.

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