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New York police hunt man who stole 86-pound bucket of gold flakes

A man grabbed a large bucket from a truck in New York City that contained gold flakes worth more than $1 million. Police are searching for the suspect who they believe fled to Florida after the heist.

The thief nabbed the large 86-pound (39-kilogram) bucket containing $1.6 million (1.51 million euros) of gold flakes out of the back of an armored truck in New York.

The theft took place September 29, while the guard defending the truck briefly left his post. But officials have now released camera footage showing a man near the truck grabbing the bucket and rushing through the borough of Manhattan past pedestrians. The suspect struggled carrying the heavy bucket, then jumped into a white van and fled the area.

Police say they believe the man is between 50 and 60 years old and Hispanic. Authorities have also said they are unsure if he knew what he was stealing.

The police released photos and videos of the suspect Tuesday wearing a black vest and green shirt, asking anyone who knew the suspect to come forward and identify him.

"I think he just saw an opportunity, took the pail and walked off," New York Police Department Detective Martin Pastor told New York TV station WNBC-TV.

kbd/gsw (AP, AFP, dpa, Reuters)