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The Honolulu Advertiser

Posted on: Saturday, August 11, 2001

Suspect in serial holdups arrested

Ex-Maui air controller accused of bank heists

By Jessica Webster
Advertiser Staff Writer

Leiffer: Tip leads to hotel near airport

Police arrested elusive serial bank robbery suspect Edward Dino Leiffer yesterday at the Pacific Marina Inn hotel near the Honolulu International Airport.

Leiffer, 38, was taken into custody at 1:20 p.m. on a parole retake warrant and in connection with a series of recent bank heists on O'ahu.

Honolulu police said they received a tip that Leiffer was seen at the hotel at Waiwai Loop.

They later found him in one of the guest rooms, and arrested him without incident.

FBI spokeswoman Pam McCullough said Leiffer has been charged with robbing the Kapahulu branch of City Bank on July 10; Kane'ohe-Kahuhipa branch of American Savings Bank on July 28; and Pearl City branch of American Savings on July 30. Police also believe that it was Leiffer who robbed the airport branch of Hawai'i National Bank on Monday.

The FBI circulated Leiffer's photo across O'ahu for more than two weeks.

Leiffer has 20 previous convictions, including three felony and seven misdemeanor convictions.

The convictions range from assault to terroristic threatening to promoting a dangerous drug.

Police and FBI grew more concerned last week when Leiffer allegedly brandished a gun in one of the robberies.

Police had also arrested a 43-year-old woman whom they described as Leiffer's girlfriend for allegedly hindering the investigation. She is also under investigation for three separate drug offenses.

A former Maui man has confessed to California serial robberies, authorities say.