Bond OK'd for alleged armored car heist crew

May 19, 2010 12:34:55 PM PDT
Two men who were allegedly planning an armored car heist using a van with a gun portal for their getaway are not a danger to the public nor a flight risk, a federal judge in Chicago decided Wednesday morning.

Judge Harry Leinenweber upheld Magistrate Judge Nan Nolan's decision to release 71-year-old Arthur Rachel and 69-year-old Robert Pulia on bond even though the government provided more recorded surveillance evidence of Rachel stating he wanted to carry "the biggest gun."

Judge Leinenweber did agree with prosecutors to hold the men until next week while the government decides whether to appeal to the 7th Circuit Court.

The third defendant in the planned heist, convicted diamond thief Gerald Scalise, was in court Wednesday but was not part of the proceedings. His bond status is still pending in front of Judge Nolan.

A tentative trial date was set for December after defense attorney Ed Gensen and Judge Lienenweber joked that it wouldn't interfere with Gensen's Santa Claus duties.