By Ryan Morgan
The FBI and the U.S. Marshals Service are offering a combined US$20,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of Roy McGrath, the one-time chief of staff for former Maryland Governor Larry Hogan.
The reward for McGrath’s arrest comes after he failed to appear in court on March 13 to face federal fraud and embezzlement charges.
On Tuesday, the U.S. Marshals Service announced that federal authorities had raised their reward for information leading to McGrath’s arrest. The FBI and the U.S. Marshals have now each offered a US$10,000 reward for information leading to McGrath’s arrest.
The 53-year-old McGrath is described as Caucasian, standing 5’4″, weighing approximately 145 pounds, and having brown eyes and brown hair. Photos of McGrath show him wearing eyeglasses. Federal authorities said he also has ties to Naples, Florida.
NTD News reached out to the FBI and U.S. Marshals Service for comment, but neither organization responded before this article was published.
McGrath Facing Fraud and Embezzlement Charges
McGrath was indicted in 2021 on state and federal charges alleging he falsified records in order to obtain a substantial severance payment from the Maryland Environmental Service (MES).
Federal and state prosecutors have alleged McGrath personally enriched himself by taking advantage of his positions of trust as the executive director of MES and as Hogan’s top aide. McGrath allegedly got the agency’s board to approve paying him a $233,647 severance payment—the equivalent of one year’s salary in his position—upon his departure as executive director by falsely telling them the governor had already approved the payment, according to prosecutors.
McGrath resigned as director of the MES on May 31, 2020 to become Hogan’s Chief of Staff the next day. McGrath ultimately resigned from the position about 11 weeks later, in August of 2020, after the press began to report on his severance payout.
McGrath also faces allegations that he falsified time sheets to claim he was at work while on two vacations in 2019. He also allegedly used state funds to pay for personal expenses, and faces additional fraud and embezzlement charges connected to about $170,000 in expenses.
McGrath has thus far pleaded “not guilty” to the charges against him.
He faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in federal prison for each of five counts of wire fraud; a maximum of 10 years in federal prison for each of two counts of embezzling funds from an organization receiving more than $10,000 in federal benefits; and a maximum of 20 years in federal prison for a single charge of falsifying a document. Actual sentences for federal crimes are typically less than the maximum penalties.
Missed Court Date and FBI Raid
McGrath was due in court on March 13 as his case was nearing trial. The court was planning to begin jury selection that day, but U.S. District Judge Deborah Boardman instead dismissed the prospective jurors and issued a warrant for McGrath’s arrest after he failed to appear.
McGrath’s attorney Joseph Murtha said he believed McGrath, who had moved to Naples, Florida, was planning to fly to Maryland the night before the court appearance.
Days later, when asked where he thought McGrath might be, Murtha said “I haven’t a clue.”
“I didn’t see this coming,” Murtha added. “This behavior is so out of the ordinary for him. Obviously his personal safety is a concern.”
Murtha added that he has been unable to reach McGrath by phone or email.
FBI officials raided McGrath’s Naples home on March 15 after his failure to appear in court, but did not find him.
NTD News reached out to McGrath’s attorneys for comment but did not receive a response before this article was published.
The Associated Press contributed to this article.
From NTD News