FBI stepping up search for 'Freedom Fighter Bandit'

- The FBI believes a 25-year-old woman is responsible for nine bank robberies across Georgia since the end of October. The latest incident happened in Dallas Thursday. Each time Nilsa Marie Urena appeared to have different men helping her pull off the crime and she has become more brazen in her approach.

"She's been dubbed the ‘Freedom Fighter Bandit.’ Because whenever she goes in she passes a note or tells the teller that she's robbing the bank for some social cause," said Kevin Rowson, spokesperson for the FBI Atlanta Field Office.

Rowson said these last two robberies Urena skipped the note passing and announced to everyone that she's robbing the bank. While she's getting more loud with her intentions, she's changing up her appearance.

"I think the last two robberies she's worn a bandana over her face. In the earlier robberies, she didn't do anything to protect her identity. But I think maybe as some of the publicity got out there about the bank robberies, her picture got out there she may have thought twice," said Rowson.

FBI officials said Urena hasn't carried a weapon that they are aware of and neither have her helpers.

"In every robbery, she's used accomplices, so we believe she's recruiting these male accomplices online somehow. But we don't believe they're the same one’s every time," said Rowson.

Authorities caught two of these men in the Loganville robbery last week. They arrested both Devon Morris and a minor, but the guys couldn't give the FBI enough information to find this woman and put her behind bars.

"With her recruiting these guys, she's the one we need to stop and then they'll stop," said Rowson.

Rowson said the woman does not appear to have any ties to Georgia. As far as they know, she's not from around here at all.

The FBI hasn't released how much money she's gotten away with so far.

"She been doing it, what 9 times now? So, clearly not enough to retire," said Rowson.

RELATED: New video of 'Freedom Fighter Bandit' as FBI identifies her

Up Next:


  • Popular

  • Recent

More from FOX 26 Houston