Roy McGrath, a former chief of staff for Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R), is now a fugitive from justice. On Tuesday, the U.S. Marshals Service released a wanted poster for McGrath, who has been accused of stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars during his tenure at a state agency, as per ABC News.
ABC News reported, “McGrath was charged in 2021 and 2022 with wire fraud, embezzlement, and falsifying documents stemming from his time running the state-owned Maryland Environmental Service, a position to which he was appointed by Hogan before becoming a top gubernatorial aide.”
Prosecutors have accused Roy McGrath of falsifying documents during his time at the Maryland Environmental Service (MES) in order to collect hundreds of thousands of dollars in unearned money.
Federal prosecutors claimed last year that McGrath had deceived the MES Board of Directors into approving a severance payment of $233,647.23, equivalent to one year’s salary upon his exit from MES. He had falsely informed them that the governor knew of and authorized the payment.
Gov. Hogan has refuted any knowledge or involvement in approving the payment.
ABC News reports that McGrath is also accused of submitting false time sheets and attempting to delete documentation related to his compensation from a board of directors meeting.
On Monday, Roy McGrath failed to appear in court as required, and now the U.S. Marshals are seeking to apprehend him, according to a tweet from their official Twitter account.
The U.S. Marshals Service put out a wanted poster for Roy McGrath, ex-chief of staff for former Governor Larry Hogan, who skipped out on his federal trial appearance. https://t.co/xjTMkFPfPj pic.twitter.com/U2t4WFvWDt
— WJZ | CBS Baltimore (@wjz) March 14, 2023
According to the Associated Press, Roy McGrath’s attorney, Joseph Murtha, is puzzled about his client’s disappearance. Murtha expected McGrath to appear in court, as required but said that he hasn’t heard from him. Murtha added that he is worried about his client’s safety and that McGrath’s unexpected behavior is out of character.
“I haven’t a clue. I didn’t see this coming. This behavior is so out of the ordinary for him. Obviously, his personal safety is a concern,” said Murtha.
Murtha stated that McGrath’s Florida property was searched on Wednesday. Interestingly, McGrath’s wife was present during the search. According to Murtha, she also appeared confused and distressed.
In a statement from Hogan’s office made before McGrath’s disappearance, spokesperson Michael Ricci said, “Marylanders deserve to know that their public officials are held to the highest ethical standards. Over the last year, our office has actively assisted law enforcement in these ongoing investigations. As this case moves to the courts, we are confident that the justice system will uphold the public trust.”
Gov. Hogan’s office has made no official statement on McGrath’s disappearance since the missed court date.