FBI Ups Reward for "AK-47 Bandit" to $100,000 - NBC Southern California

FBI Ups Reward for "AK-47 Bandit" to $100,000

The serial bank robber has been linked to heists in Chino, Vacaville, Sacramento, Washington state and Idaho, according to federal authorities.



    FBI Ups Reward for "AK-47 Bandit" to $100,000
    Surveillance cameras captured this image of the so-called "AK-47 Bandit" as he exited a Chino bank in February 2012.

    Tips leading to the arrest of the so-called "AK-47 Bandit," wanted in a slew of bank heists across the western United States, could result in a $100,000 reward, the FBI announced Wednesday.

    "This guy, he’s a time bomb about to go off again," Bill Lewis, head of the FBI office in Los Angeles, said in a news conference.

    Prior to Wednesday, a $50,000 reward had been posted for the arrest of the prolific bank robber suspected of shooting a Chino police officer during a heist in February 2012, before hitting up banks in Northern California, Idaho and Washington. He was dubbed the "AK-47 Bandit" because of his penchant to carry the assault rifle into his targeted banks.

    PHOTOS: "AK-47 Bandit" Caught on Camera

    Investigators said he has told victims that he used to be an officer, and surveillance video shows him usually wearing tactical gear, a full-face ski mask and blue ballistic vest or green mesh vest marked "Sheriff."

    FBI Wanted Poster

    After robbing the California Bank & Trust in Chino early last year, the man is believed to have robbed a Vacaville Bank of the West on March 12, 2012. He may have also tried to rob a bank in Sacramento a few days earlier.

    Caught on Video: Chino Bank Gunman

    [LA] Caught on Video: Chino Bank Gunman
    Surveillance video show a man armed with a high-powered rifle walk into a Chino bank before he opened fire on an officer outside the building.
    (Published Thursday, March 1, 2012)

    Similar robberies were carried out in Washington on July 6, 2012, and Idaho on Nov. 7, 2012.

    The “AK-47 Bandit” is described as a white male, 25 to 40 years old, about 5 feet 10 inches tall and weighing between 180 and 200 pounds.

    Anyone with information is encouraged to call these phone numbers:

    • Chino Police Department: 909-628-1234
    • Los Angeles Field Office: 310-477-6565
    • Sacramento Field Office: 916-481-9110
    • Sacramento Police Department: 916-732-0100
    • San Francisco Field Office: 415-553-7400
    • Vacaville Police Department: 707-449-5200

    Follow NBCLA for the latest LA news, events and entertainment:iPhone/iPad App | Facebook| Twitter | Google+ | Instagram | RSS | Email Alerts