FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT
AUSA VICKIE E. LEDUC or
MARCIA MURPHY at 410-209-4885
July 23, 2009
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
ROBBER ADMITS GUILT IN NOVEMBER 2008 ARMED BANK ROBBERY AND THE SHOOTING OF A BANK EMPLOYEE
One of the Robbers Killed in Shootout after Lengthy Chase by Multiple Agencies
Baltimore, Maryland - Anirudh Lakhan Sukhu, age 42, of Silver, pleaded guilty today to armed robbery and use of a firearm during a crime of violence in connection with an armed bank robbery in which Sukhu shot a teller in the hand and the ensuing chase by law enforcement encompassed four counties, announced United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein.
According to his plea agreement, Sukhu met with two conspirators, Sharman Said and Omar Burnett, on November 20, 2008 to plan a robbery of the Bank of America located on Ten Oaks Road in Clarksville, Maryland. That same morning, the robbers rode to the bank in Sukhu’s pick-up truck and entered, brandishing guns and announcing the robbery. Burnett brandished his handgun, vaulted the counter and demanded money from the tellers. Sukhu, armed with a sawed-off 12 gauge shotgun, entered an office where a bank employee was hiding and ordered the employee to “come out.” As the employee began to come out, Sukhu shot the employee, who was injured in the hand. Sukhu then also vaulted the counter and took money from the tellers, which he placed in a red and black bag. Said remained at the front door, armed with a handgun, and served as a look-out.
The robbers took $23,471 and fled from the bank in the truck. A witness called 911 and gave a description of the vehicle. Law enforcement officers pursued the robbers at high speeds through four counties. The robbers eventually abandoned the truck in Montgomery County near Said’s home and they fled on foot.
Burnett fired at police and was killed. The stolen money, a second handgun and a sawed-off shotgun used during the robbery were seized near Burnett’s body. The other handgun was recovered near the abandoned truck. Said escaped by hiding in his home, and was subsequently arrested on January 8, 2009. Sukhu called 911 to falsely report that he had been the victim of a carjacking involving his pick-up truck, the same truck used in the robbery. During a subsequent interview with police, Sukhu admitted participating in the robbery and admitted that he was the robber who fired the shotgun, injuring the bank employee.
Sukhu faces a maximum sentence of 25 years in prison for armed robbery; and a mandatory minimum of 10 years and a maximum of life in prison, consecutive to any other sentence, for using a firearm during a crime of violence. U.S. District Judge William D. Quarles, Jr. has scheduled sentencing for October 15, 2009, at 1:00 p.m. Sukhu remains in federal custody.
Sharman Said, age 27, of Burtonsville, Maryland, previously pleaded guilty to his role in the robbery and is scheduled to be sentenced on October 23, 2009 at 9:30 a.m.
United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein thanked the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Howard County Police Department, the Montgomery County Police Department, Prince George’s County Police Department, Anne Arundel County Police Department and the Maryland State Police for their investigative work. Mr. Rosenstein commended Assistant United States Attorneys Rachel Yasser and Sandra Wilkinson, who are prosecuting the case.