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An assault weapon more likely to be found in the pages of “Soldier of Fortune” than the streets of Brooklyn was recovered from a Bensonhurst apartment building during a recent gun bust, officials said.
The ATI SKS was seized from the 76th Street home between 20th and 21st avenues after members of the 62nd Precinct Anti-Crime Team arrested a group of men following a car stop in Bath Beach.
“I have never seen bullets that big,” Sergeant Geoffrey Varela told this paper as he and his men were honored as “Cops of the Month” at Tuesday’s 62nd Precinct Community Council meeting. “They could have easily gone through a bullet-proof vest.”
The SKS was one of four weapons that Varela and Police Officers Oliver Muir, Yakov Kaushanskiy, Salvatore Latorre and Daniel McNeil seized following a rudimentary car stop.
The plain clothes cops were patrolling the area that day when they saw a car driving erratically near the corner of Bay 37th Street and Bath Avenue.
The officers put on their lights and were in the process of pulling the car over when someone inside the vehicle pitched a gun out of a window.
The weapon, which they later recovered, turned out to be a Tech-9 assault pistol, officials said.
The officers took the three suspects into custody and later learned that more guns could be found at their apartment.
Cops executed a search warrant on the address, finding two other pistols, as well as the ATI SKS.
“It’s the kind of gun that you would see in Afghanistan,” Varela said, adding that the SKS was similar to an AK-47.
Cops did not know just why the suspect had such a fierce weapon in his home.
The three were arrested on multiple counts of criminal possession of a weapon, officials said.
Captain John Benoit, the 62nd Precinct’s new executive officer, said that the Anti-Crime team’s bravery and dedication have helped the precinct sustain the nearly nine percent drop in crime they’ve celebrated over the past year.
“These guns could have been used to either kill these officers or you,” said Lou Tromboli, the president of the 62nd Precinct Community Council.
Tromboli said stories like the one recounted by Sergeant Valera and his team should be remembered every time a resident feels that they’re being treated rudely at a car stop.
“These officers had no clue that there would have been a gun in his car,” said Tromboli. “This incident could have turned into a war zone in five seconds.”
©2008 Community Newspaper Group
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