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According to police, Robert Roma, the 67-year-old Little Neck landscaper arrested for having numerous firearms, large amounts of ammunition, a bayonet, and even an air rifle in his home and at a Long Island storage facility, had been hoarding the weapons with the intent to sell them.
In court documents obtained by The Queens Courier, it was revealed that Roma, &#8220who is not authorized to possess a pistol or revolver within the City of New York and who is not an authorized firearms dealer,” had numerous guns, including an illegal AK47 assault rifle, in his personal possession.
The cache was discovered on the evening of Tuesday, August 8.
The day before, officers of the 111th Precinct in Bayside had gone to Roma’s home, located at 45-45 248th Street, in response to an anonymous 9-1-1 call reporting a family dispute. They discovered a semi-automatic assault rifle and a fully loaded magazine containing 40 rounds of ammunition sitting in plain view.
When questioned by police, Roma allegedly admitted that the rifle was his and that he had similar weapons stored at a Westry Storage Center, located at 2400 Marcus Avenue in New Hyde Park.
The following day, police executed a search warrant on the facility and allegedly recovered an additional 21 assault rifles and 18 magazines, each capable of holding more than ten rounds.
&#8220This was the result of good police work,” said Gary Poggiali, 111th Precinct Community Affairs Officer.
However, despite his arrest, neighbors say that Roma is &#8220a good guy.”
&#8220I've known Bob [Roma] for more than 30 years,” said Carl Caruso, 49, who lives across the street from Roma's quaint, beautifully maintained stone home. &#8220He's a very nice guy who wouldn't harm a fly. He's a really mellow guy.”
Saying that the defendant probably had the guns as a means of protection or as part of a collection, neighbors described Roma as a former bodybuilder who is now partially debilitated by a degenerative disease.
They dispute the claim that Roma intended to sell the weapons.
When The Queens Courier visited his home, a woman pulling her car into the Roma garage denied knowing the suspect.
Moreover, when we contacted his business, Roma Horticulture - now run by his adult daughter - employees declined comment.
This case comes on the heels of another gun bust executed by Suffolk County police in conjunction with the NYPD.
Just last month, Suffolk County and New York City police officers confiscated more than 50 guns from Gregory Brozski's two-story apartment, located at 63-32 223rd Place in Bayside. Among the guns seized in Brozski's arsenal were four AK-47 assault rifles, four UZI submachine guns, eight AR-15 semi-automatic rifles and a grenade launcher. He is currently being prosecuted by Queens District Attorney Richard A. Brown's Narcotic Investigations Bureau and was arraigned on Thursday, July 27 and remanded without bail. He will return to court on Thursday, September 21.
Roma was arraigned before Queens Criminal Court Judge Ira Margulis on multiple counts of second- and third-degree criminal possession of a weapon. He was ordered held on $500,000 bail and will return to court on August 23. He faces up to 15 years in prison if convicted.

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