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Press Release

Oakland Resident Charged For Series Of Bank Robberies

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of California

OAKLAND – Naikano Tuipulotu made his initial appearance on February 15, 2024, to face charges presented in a criminal complaint alleging he committed, and attempted to commit, a series of bank robberies in the East Bay, announced United States Attorney Ismail J. Ramsey and Federal Bureau of Investigation, Special Agent in Charge Robert K. Tripp.

According to the complaint affidavit, from October 23, 2023, through January 13, 2024, Tuipulotu, 30, of Oakland, robbed three banks and attempted to rob two others, each in Alameda County. During the robberies and attempted robberies, Tuipulotu passed handwritten notes stating that he had a gun and demanded money from bank tellers. The criminal complaint charges Tuipulotu with bank robbery, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 2113(a).

Tuipulotu was arrested on February 14, 2024, and made his initial appearance in federal court in Oakland the following day. Tuipulotu remains in custody pending further proceedings in the case. Tuipulotu’s next scheduled appearance is at 10:30 a.m. on February 21, 2024, for status regarding detention before U.S. Magistrate Judge Kandis A. Westmore.

A criminal complaint merely alleges that crimes have been committed, and all defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. If convicted, the defendant faces a maximum sentence of twenty years in prison and a fine of $250,000, plus restitution if appropriate, for a single violation of 18 U.S.C. § 2113(a). However, any sentence following conviction would be imposed by the court after consideration of the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and the federal statute governing the imposition of a sentence, 18 U.S.C. § 3553.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Jonah Ross is prosecuting the case. The prosecution is the result of an investigation by the FBI and the San Leandro, Fremont, and Hayward Police Departments.

Updated February 16, 2024