NYPD investigators, acting on a tip, seized an estimated 50,000 rounds of ammunition and 71 assault weapons, shotguns, rifles and handguns from a Queens man’s apartment on Sunday and arrested him on multiple firearms charges, officials said.
Ronald Drabman, 60, faces several charges of criminal possession of a weapon, as well as a charge of unlawful possession of a high-capacity magazine, according to an NYPD spokesman.
A field intelligence officer was tipped on Saturday about a possible weapons cache in the apartment at 58-08 208th St. in Oakland Gardens, said Chief Thomas Galati, the head of NYPD intelligence, at a news conference Monday. Investigators secured a search warrant, Galati said, and emergency service officers raided the apartment on Sunday.
Among the weapons seized were 23 handguns, 45 assault weapons, rifles and shotguns, as well as a zip gun and two pellet guns, according to police.
In a statement, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said Drabman is not a gun dealer.
“He is not licensed to sell or to manufacture firearms or ammunition,” he said.
“This stockpile of weapons poses a great risk to the residents of Queens,” Brown continued. “It is extremely disturbing to find such an arsenal of firearms in a residential community.”
Officials didn’t want to give out too many details about the case but said they believe Drabman had no help amassing the weapons. Galati said the investigation was continuing.
Drabman, who a police source said lived at the address with his 94-year-old mother, had one previous arrest for a pending charge of criminal possession of a weapon, Galati said. If convicted on the new charges, Drabman faces what Brown said would be a “lengthy term of incarceration” of up to 25 years in prison.
A law enforcement source said the amount of ammunition seized from the apartment may have been more than the estimated 50,000 rounds. Containers filled with ammunition appeared to take up the back of a police vehicle, the source said.
“If you are a collector, why do you need so many rounds?” the source asked. In light of mass shootings such as that in Las Vegas, NYPD concerns have been heightened when they find such large numbers of weapons, including assault rifles, in the possession of one person, the source added.
The arrest of Drabman, who had not been arraigned as of late Monday, came a day after Suffolk County police took Robert Csak, 32, of Lindenhurst, into custody on charges he had what a prosecutor said was a “military-style arsenal” in his home.