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Two masked men with semiautomatic rifles held up two Garda armored-truck guards outside a TD Bank branch in Northeast Philadelphia on April 17, 2014. / Matt Rourke, AP

Two masked men with assault rifles stole $105,000 from an armored truck outside a Philadelphia bank Thursday morning, police said.

The robbers have been connected to a similar, $310,000 heist a mile away on Halloween, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported, citing a law enforcement source.

Hours after Thursday's holdup, police raided an apartment and recovered a large amount of cash that may have come from the holdup at the TD Bank branch in the Mayfair section of northeast Philadelphia. One of two vehicles used in the robbery - a Cadillac SUV - was found outside the apartment building.

Witnesses told police that gunmen wearing black bandanas confronted the crew of the Garda truck just before 9 a.m. and fled in a stolen minivan, which they abandoned two blocks away. A neighbor spotted the robbers transferring the money to the white Escalade and speeding away with others inside.

Police traced the Cadillac's license plate to a third-floor apartment in the Roxborough section and used a battering ram to enter, sources told the Inquirer and WPVI-TV. Officers found "a large plastic bag stuffed full of cash" but no weapons or suspects, the station said.

Investigators said they believe the men fled out the back door when police arrived.

It was the city's second big Garda heist in six months.

The FBI is still looking for two men armed with semiautomatic rifles and wearing Scream masks who held up the company's armed guards outside a Wells Fargo branch on Halloween. None of the money has been recovered.

The Inquirer's source did not say how authorities had linked the two robberies.

In October 2007, a gunman killed two Loomis armored-car guards servicing an ATM at a Wachovia bank in northeast Philadelphia. Police recovered a duffel bag filled with cash behind an off-track betting parlor behind the bank.

Three years later, a jury convicted 39-year-old Mustafa Ali of murdering William Widmaier, 65, and Joseph Alullo, 54, both retired city police officers.



Copyright 2014 USATODAY.com

Read the original story: Phila. robbers steal $105K from armored truck

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