- Associated Press - Thursday, December 17, 2015

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) - Federal prosecutors say a bank robber who was part of a Washington-area gang called the Black Hat Bandits has been sentenced to 32 years in prison.

Authorities said Thursday that 65-year-old Thomas Anthony George of Washington also must pay restitution of more than $182,000.

George pleaded guilty in September to two counts of using a firearm during the commission of armed bank robberies.

According to court documents, George began conspiring with others earlier this year to rob area banks.

Authorities say the group robbed nine banks, including six in Virginia, two in Maryland, and one in the District of Columbia.

Investigators say that, in each of these robberies, George brandished a firearm at bank customers or employees.

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