Vernon bank robber has to do the time

Kelowna Law Courts

A Vernon bank robber with poor make-up skills got no reprieve from B.C.'s top court.

Trafton Michael Zakis, 41, was handed a six-year sentence in January, 2012 for robbing the Vernon Royal Bank in July, 2011.
 
According to a judgement by the B.C. Court of Appeal earlier this month, Zakis glued black fibres to his face to disguise his appearance. It didn't work very well; witnesses described him as having a full dark beard that appeared to be fake.
 
He made off with about $700 after telling the bank clerk it was a robbery and to hand him $10,000 "or it could be a hostage situation."
He was arrested a short time later. He had been convicted of several robberies in Alberta for which he was on parole and had failed three drug tests. He told the court he was in the Okanagan to care for his mother in Kelowna.
 
At his trial, the Crown asked for four years, but the judge went off the board and sentenced Zakis to six years, which led in part to the appeal of sentence.
The three judges of the court were having none of it.
 
"This case involved a serious offence, a bank robbery, committed by an offender with a significant record, including seven robberies for which he received sentences of seven-and-a-half years," wrote Justice Levine, noting that it was a lighter sentence than he got in Alberta.
 

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