Australian gets 70-month term for bank heist

Jul 12, 2013 The Associated Press

CHEYENNE -- A federal judge in Wyoming handed down a nearly six-year prison sentence to an Australian man who says he robbed a Jackson bank so he could give money to the homeless.

U.S. District Judge Alan B. Johnson sentenced Corey Donaldson, 40, to serve 70 months for bank robbery.

He also said Donaldson likely will be deported after his prison term.

Representing himself at trial this spring, Donaldson likened himself to Robin Hood, saying he was justified in taking over $140,000 from the U.S. Bank on Dec. 31 because he used much of the cash to save the lives of homeless people.

"You haven't lived until you have served others in such a way that they can never pay you back," Donaldson told the judge on Thursday.

He also apologized for terrifying the bank manager by falsely claiming the bank building was rigged with explosives.

Donaldson was arrested on Jan. 22 in Utah. Officers recovered more than $30,000 from Donaldson and in a room he had rented in an upscale hotel. At trial, officers testified they found $11,000 stuffed into envelopes and addressed to Donaldson's relatives.

Donaldson addressed the judge for more than an hour Thursday, spanning subjects ranging from a family yachting accident when he was a teenager to his plans to study literature after prison. He said he came to the U.S. after marrying a U.S. citizen and stayed, sometimes without a home, after a divorce.

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