| LOS ANGELES, March 28
LOS ANGELES, March 28 A California man who
prosecutors say led a gang of burglars in a decade-long string
of Hollywood-style bank robberies, rappelling through roofs in
matching outfits and carrying walkie-talkies, has been sentenced
to 20 years in prison.
Alceu Johnny Andreis, who was already serving 51 months
behind bars for an attempted bank robbery in 2014, was also
ordered by a federal judge to pay $12 million in restitution and
forfeit two Mercedes-Benz cars and four Ducati motorcycles
purchased with stolen loot.
Andreis, 48, was convicted of two counts of bank robbery
following a jury trial in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles in
Los Angeles late last year.
Prosecutors said Andreis led a crew of burglars in a series
of well-planned bank robberies across Southern California in
which the members carefully cased each building, cut holes in
the roofs to gain access via ropes and conducted numerous dry
According to evidence presented at trial, the burglars also
disabled sophisticated security systems, communicated via
walkie-talkies and jackhammered through thick concrete bank
vaults before making off with the cash and the contents of
Prosecutors said in court documents that Andreis drug-tested
his subordinates, had them wear identical clothing and shoes and
thoroughly wipe down their equipment to ensure they would leave
behind no fingerprints or DNA evidence.
Andreis and other members of the gang were apprehended in
2014 while trying to burglarize a Citibank branch in the Los
Angeles suburb of Diamond Bar.
Three other members of the group have pleaded guilty in
connection with the bank robberies, prosecutors say. Two of
those defendants were sentenced to prison terms of up to 10
years, while a third was awaiting sentencing.
(Reporting by Dan Whitcomb; Editing by Peter Cooney)