Guilty plea for 'River Rat Bandit' in bank jobs

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PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) -- A 34-year-old man has pleaded guilty in federal court to four Portland bank robberies attributed to the "River Rat Bandit."

The River Rat is blamed for a 2009 series of armed robberies on both sides of the Columbia River that netted more than $96,000. In addition to the four Portland bank jobs, The Oregonian reports that (http://bit.ly/pOHfJ9) the robber hit 14 banks or check cashing outlets in Washington, from Clark County to the Puget Sound area.

Prosecutors say Alexey Perez-Hernandez relied on Travis Oles to drive the getaway vehicle. Oles was earlier sentenced to 18 years.

Perez-Hernandez entered his guilty pleas Wednesday. Under a plea agreement, he is expected to serve 28 years in federal prison and be ordered to pay nearly $25,000. Sentencing was set for Dec. 7.

The newspaper says prosecutors in the Washington counties of Clark, King and Pierce are expected to accept guilty pleas from Perez-Hernandez and allow him to serve those sentences concurrently with his federal term.

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Information from: The Oregonian, http://www.oregonlive.com