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L.A. Fugitive Accused in a Nationwide 30-Year Crime Wave

May 09, 1998| Reuters

STAMFORD, Conn. — A suspect has been accused of stealing millions of dollars from legal and corporate offices in a 30-year crime wave from Los Angeles to Boston, police said Friday.

Bruce Patten, a 52-year-old fugitive from Los Angeles, was arrested Monday in Stamford on charges of forgery, burglary and larceny after an informant's tip.

He pleaded not guilty earlier this week.

Patten's alleged technique was to walk into business and legal offices, steal checks from the middle of checkbooks, and forge signatures on them to set up bank accounts in the names of assumed identities. An officer said he "takes great pride in stealing from attorneys."

Patten is a fugitive from a Los Angeles court case in which he is charged with similar crimes.

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