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Fugitive 'Fat Leonard' captured in Venezuela weeks after escaping San Diego

Fat Leonard
Posted at 7:51 PM, Sep 21, 2022
and last updated 2022-09-22 09:32:44-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — Leonard Glenn "Fat Leonard" Francis, a Malaysian defense contractor who is at the center of one of the biggest bribery scandals in U.S Navy history, has been arrested weeks after being on the run.

According to Supervisory Deputy Omar Castillo from the US Marshals Service, Francis was apprehended Tuesday, Sept. 20 by authorities in Caracas, Venezuela as he attempted to board a flight.

Francis was placed under house arrest in San Diego while awaiting sentencing after he pleaded guilty in January 2015.

On Sunday, Sept. 4, the San Diego Police Department did a welfare check and learned Francis cut off his GPS bracelet and fled the city.

Many naval officers admitted to giving Francis classified information and steering navy ships to his repair company, called Glenn Defense Marine Asia.

In exchange, Francis bribed the officers with more than $500,000 in fancy hotel accommodations, expensive restaurant meals, and prostitutes. More than two dozen other people have also pleaded guilty or were convicted in the case.

Supervisory Deputy Castillo says neighbors witnessed U-Haul moving trucks outside Francis' home in the days before his escape.

After several health issues, Francis has been on house arrest since 2018 and under the supervision of a federal agency. He was set to be sentenced on September 22.