Robert Woodring, DEA Informant Turned Fugitive, Arrested in Mexico After 37 Years
Pjotr Mahhonin via wikimedia commons
A South Floridian with a colorful criminal history has been scooped up by authorities in Mexico after spending nearly four decades running from police. Robert Woodring, now 81, was picked up in Guadalajara, Mexico late last year and will finally face arraignment this week.
Police had been looking for the Woodring 35 years after he was pulled some fast moves to keep his yacht from being seized by authorities . . . which is totally the most South Florida move ever.
According to a release from the U.S. Attorney's office, in 1975, authorities were looking to impound Woodring's 60-foot yacht. Instead of turn the vessel in, however, the skipper made a fast break with the boat, leading police and U.S. Coast Guard on a chase until nightfall.
In October 1975 he was handed a 10-month sentence for the move. Two years later, he was convicted of mail fraud and conspiracy to commit mail fraud, earning a seven-year sentence on top of the skip charge. He was ordered to turn himself in . . . but instead seems to have run to South America . . . the second most South Florida move ever.
In 1984, while Woodring was still on the lam, the was indicted for failing to surrender. Regardless, it appears the fugitive was living the good life down south until late last year. According to the Sun-Sentinel, U.S. authorities were in Mexico looking for a different fugitive when they were given a tip that Woodring was in the area.
The Sun-Sentinel piece notes that back in 1986, the newspaper referred to Woodring as a Drug Enforcement Administration informant.
Woodring, who is currently 81, made a first court appearance in Los Angeles last December. He has since been moved back to Miami, where he's scheduled for arraignment on January 14.
Get the Things to Do Newsletter
Find out about upcoming events and special offers happening in South Florida.