Two men suspected in multiple armored car robberies were arrested Friday on federal robbery and firearms offenses alleging they robbed an armored vehicle on Monday in Harbor City and shot a guard several times in the leg.

Gregory James, 47, of San Pedro, and Lamond Akins, 30, of Compton, were arrested pursuant to a federal criminal complaint that charges them with Hobbs Act robbery and discharging a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence. Both men were expected to make their initial court appearance Friday in U.S. District Court in downtown Los Angeles.

On Monday morning at about 11:20, a Loomis guard was ambushed by two armed suspects after working on ATMs at a Bank of America branch in Harbor City. According to the affidavit in support of the complaint, surveillance video from the scene and from James’ residence link the two defendants to the robbery.

Furthermore, “Akins is also the registered owner of a black Chevy Malibu, which is consistent with the vehicle used during the robbery,” the affidavit states. “Cell phone records for James’ cell phone place him in the location of the … robbery at the time of the robbery.”

During the incident, the robbers ambushed the guard and both opened fire, striking him in the leg several times, federal prosecutors allege.

According to the affidavit, the robbers stole $140,000, as well as the guard’s firearm.

The Hobbs Act robbery offense alleged in the complaint carries a penalty of up to 20 years in federal prison, and the firearms offense carries a mandatory minimum of 10 years in prison, prosecutors noted.

Los Angeles County Department Major Crimes Bureau investigators — in cooperation with the FBI, Gardena Police Department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives — said three recent armored car robberies share the same modus operandi, according to the LASD.

Authorities obtained warrants for the arrest of the two suspects and both were detained about 5 a.m. Friday. Atkins was found and detained at his residence in the 1600 block of W. 121st Street of Los Angeles, while James was detained at a motel in the 17200 block of Downey Avenue in Bellflower.

“Numerous pieces of evidence were recovered at both locations,” the LASD reported. “Suspects Akins and James were arrested and transported to the Federal Detention Center in Los Angeles, where they were booked on Robbery and Illegal Discharge of a Firearm charges.”

Authorities are investigating to determine if the suspects are responsible for similar armored car robberies in Southern California, and asked anyone with information to contact the LASD Major Crimes Bureau at 562-946-7150. Anonymous tips can be called in to Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477 or submitted at lacrimestoppers.org.

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