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Joseph Banks, the most prolific bank robber in Chicago history, who became one of the city’s most daring escape artists when he and another inmate broke out of a federal high-rise jail by scaling down 15 stories on a rope made of bed sheets, was back in court today after being captured late last night, two and a half days after his brief run for freedom began.
Banks, who claims to be a “Moorish national” and exempt from federal laws, faces up to five years in prison for the escape.
He was awaiting sentencing in March for bank robbery when he and his cellmate, convicted bank robber Kenneth Conley, scaled down the building, hailed a cab and then disappeared into predawn darkness.
Banks was arrested without incident at 11:30 p.m. last night at a townhouse on the city’s North Side by federal and local law enforcement, according to the Chicago Tribune.
As Banks appeared before a federal magistrate this morning, shackles dangling from his wrists and ankles, Conley remained at large.