LAX — A man accused of attempting to rob a bank in Santa Monica was indicted by a federal grand jury last week on eight counts of bank robbery and attempted bank robbery, according to a release by the FBI.

William Joseph Allen, 32, of Los Angeles, was arrested on April 17 in downtown Los Angeles after Santa Monica Police Department detectives identified him as a suspect in the string of robberies associated with what officials dubbed “the Explosives Threat Bandit.”

Between November 2011 and March 2012, Allen allegedly went to eight banks and convinced tellers that he had placed a bomb inside the bank, and had an associate outside of the bank waiting to blow it up if they did not give him cash.

Sometimes he would tell them that he had the bomb on him.

Bomb squads had to be called in to defuse the fake devices, according to the release.

The last bank he hit up was the Wells Fargo on Fourth Street in Santa Monica. He did not get any money out of that attempt.

Members of the Los Angeles, Santa Monica, El Monte, West Covina and Baldwin Park police departments as well as the FBI and Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department assisted in the investigation.

Allen is being held in federal custody awaiting trial, and will be prosecuted by the United States Attorney’s Office.

ashley@smdp.co

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