Thief who stole $1.6 million in gold in broad daylight tells unbelievable tale for first time on TV

Jon San
Supervising Producer, Yahoo Entertainment

In 2016, in broad daylight, Julio Nivelo brazenly stole a bucket of gold from the back of an armored truck in Manhattan. His take totaled $1.6 million in melted gold bars.

Now, the Ecuadorian man dubbed “the Golden Boy” is telling his unbelievable story to NBC 4 New York. The video, taken from nearby security cameras, shows Nivelo taking the gold from a seemingly unattended Loomis truck:

“I was surprised,” he told NBC 4 New York. “I saw two [guard] silhouettes only.” Then, when one guard walked away, Nivelo saw his chance and walked to the back of the open truck and grabbed a bucket, a bucket that weighed 86 pounds. He lugged it around midtown for several blocks.

“As soon as I passed Fifth Avenue, nobody followed me, I knew the game was over. Boom,” said Nivelo.

Eventually, Nivelo exchanged the gold for $1.2 million in cash on the black market. He left the money with his fiancée in a storage locker in New Jersey while he escaped to Ecuador. But like the Hollywood adaptation that’s sure to be coming soon, the story had a twist.

“My fiancée took the money that belonged to us,” he said. “I feel broke.”

That might have been an unintended pun, but these days Nivelo is living modestly. He did end up escaping to Ecuador but was arrested in January 2017 and served nine months in prison. Now he lives with his mother in Guayaquil.

He still insists that his fiancée has the rest of his money. The NYPD wouldn’t comment to NBC 4, as it’s an open investigation.

As for any potential blockbuster movie about the heist, Nivelo has at least one big-name pick for who would play him: “Nicolas Cage,” he said. “I would like Robert De Niro, but now he’s too old.”

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