Hostage crisis in U.S. bank over, robbers flee

08:10, September 25, 2010      

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A hostage crisis at a bank in the U.S. state of Florida on Friday morning ended peacefully but the suspects fled the scene, authorities said.

A teller who works at a Bank of America branch near the University of Miami was kidnapped by three men at his apartment at about 1 a.m. Friday, according to FBI spokeswoman Judy Orihuela.

Orihuela said the three men strapped what might be a bomb to the teller's body, and then drove him to the Bank of America at about 8 a.m., one hour before its 9 a.m. opening.

The FBI, local bomb squad and police responded to the situation after receiving calls of a robbery at the bank. After nearly four hours of standoff, the teller cut himself free from the possible bomb and was taken into custody. But the three suspects fled the scene with an unknown amount of cash.

Local police said they were still uncertain about the role of the teller in this hostage situation and the investigation was still ongoing.

Orihuela said the possible bombing device remained inside the bank, and police were working to figure out whether it is an active bomb.

Roads have been closed in the area near the bank. Further details, including the identity of the robbers, remain unknown.

Source: Xinhua


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