GLENDALE — A 44-year-old Glendale man was arrested this week during a routine traffic stop after police found a bank bag and demand note in his car linking him to two Los Angeles area robberies, officials said.
Serge Alvandy was taken into custody at about 3:40 p.m. Monday after Special Enforcement Detail officers also discovered thousands of dollars in cash and a handgun in the car, Glendale Police Sgt. Tom Lorenz said.
Glendale police detectives later connected Alvandy to two bank robberies in Woodland Hills and West Hollywood, he said.
“He lives in our community, and he goes out and preys on others,” Lorenz said.
About two hours before his arrest, Alvandy held up a Citibank in Woodland Hills, FBI spokeswoman Laura Eimiller said. He passed the teller a demand note written in red ink, threatened to use a handgun and used a bank bag to collect his loot, she said.
Alvandy also was connected to the robbery of a U.S. Bank in West Hollywood on July 8, Eimiller said. He used a note written in red ink that threatened the use of a handgun in that robbery, and he collected cash in a bank bag, Eimiller said.
Officers spotted Alvandy's Toyota Corolla, which didn't have a front license plate, in the 7-Eleven parking lot on Chevy Chase Drive and Broadway, according to police reports.
After finding that Alvandy's driving license had been suspended, officers searched him and found a large amount of cash in his front pant pocket along with a state welfare card.
Alvandy told officers that he had received $4,000 in cash from a contracting job, according to reports.
Police declined to confirm the amount of cash recovered during the arrest.
Officers searched Alvandy's car and found a .40-caliber semiautomatic handgun on the front passenger seat. They also found 10 rounds of ammunition in the glove box.
Alvandy reportedly told police that he carried the gun because he had been robbed several times.
Police officers also found a Wells Fargo Bank bag containing a checkbook and a handwritten note in red ink demanding money and threatening use of a handgun, Lorenz said.
Alvandy told officers he didn't use Wells Fargo banks and didn't know where the bag came from, according to police reports, although his name reportedly was on the bank-issued checkbook.
Because bank robbery is a federal crime, Alvandy was turned over to the FBI, Lorenz said.