Suspect arrested in connection to two armed robberies of cash advance stores

Writer: Derrick Shaw
Published: Updated:

A suspect has been arrested in connection to two cash advance store armed robberies.

John Wayne Ballester, 51, of Lehigh Acres, is accused of robbing the Advance America at 11861 Palm Beach Boulevard in Fort Myers on April 26.

Detectives say they received an anonymous tip identifying the suspect as John Ballester. Detectives learned Ballester was released from prison in May 2018 after being convicted of an armed bank robbery and manslaughter, according to LCSO.

On Friday, detectives searched Ballester’s home and three vehicles at the property.

Evidence found during the search linked Ballester to another armed robbery that occurred at a different Advanced America in the area.

Deputies say clothing worn during both Advance America robberies was located inside the home. They also found weapons they believe were used during the robberies and currency strapped packs of money similar to those found in financial institutions.

Inside Ballester’s wallet, detectives found a Florida Driver’s License and four credit cards issued to the name Jack Ballester.

Detectives say Jack Ballester was John Ballester’s deceased brother.

John Wayne Ballester faces charges of: two counts of Robbery with a Firearm, Fraud-Impersonate Use/Possess ID, Possession of Counterfeited Credit Cards, Possession of Counterfeited Credit Cards two or more, and Fraud-Impersonate Possess/Use Fictitious Personal ID.

MORE: Information wanted on armed robbery suspect in Lee County

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