Man appears in court on charges for multiple East Bay bank robberies

A 30-year-old Oakland man appeared in court on Wednesday for criminal charges that allege that he committed, and attempted to commit, a series of bank robberies in the East Bay between Oct. 23, 2023, and Jan. 13.     

Prosecutors are accusing Naikano Tuipulotu of robbing three banks and attempting to rob two others, all five of which were in Alameda County. They allege he gave bank tellers handwritten notes claiming he had a gun and demanding money.     

Tuipulotu was arrested on Wednesday and appeared in court the following day. His next court appearance, in front of U.S. Magistrate Judge Kandis A. Westmore, is scheduled for 10:30 a.m. on Feb. 21. Assistant U.S. Attorney Jonah Ross is prosecuting the case.     

The case is a result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the San Leandro, Fremont, and Hayward Police Departments.   

If convicted, Tuipulotu faces a maximum sentence of twenty years in prison and a fine of $250,000, plus potential restitution, for each charge.