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2 brothers in Queens found with homemade explosives, ghost guns, Queens DA says

2 brothers in Queens found with homemade explosives, ghost guns, Queens DA says
2 brothers in Queens found with homemade explosives, ghost guns, Queens DA says 02:18

NEW YORK -- Two brothers in Queens are in custody after homemade explosives, bomb-making instructions, ghost guns and anarchist propaganda were found in their Astoria apartment earlier this month.

Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz said the two also had documents and notebooks with a hit list of police officers, judges, politicians, celebrities, bankers and others.

Andrew Hatziagelis, 39, and Angelo Hatziagelis, 51, were indicted on 130 counts of criminal possession of a weapon and other charges.

After a six-month investigation, an arsenal was found in the apartment they share with their mother and another brother, located across from a Con Edison power facility at 804 36th Ave, on Jan. 17.

"I told the agents we all know they're a little bit of a conspiracy theorists, but this takes it to a whole new level," said neighbor Shaleen Heffernan, who lives in the same building. "They just have a huge chip on their shoulder. I went out of my way to not interact with them. It has gotten to that point."

Six operable ghost guns, body armor, ammunition, smoke bombs and eight IEDs were among the items found.

"It is significant to note that homemade explosives, in general, and improvised explosive devices, such as the ones we recovered, are extremely unpredictable and highly volatile. The mere act of removing them from the house and have them submitted for testing is risky for the NYPD and for any office or agency that enters the building they're contained in," Katz said. "Four of the IEDs were found in one container. Had one of those IEDs detonated, it would likely have resulted in a shockwave that would've detonated the remaining explosives. This prompted the bomb squad, like I said, to evacuate the building several times."

Katz wouldn't go into too much detail, but said neither brother was on their radar, adding one had a prior misdemeanor conviction from 1994.

When asked how the investigation started, the DA said, "The investigation does entail the internet. It does entail the purchasing of the parts of these weapons."

It's unclear what exactly their plans may have been.

The brothers will appear in court on Feb. 15. If convicted, they face up to 25 years in prison.

Katz said it doesn't appear the Con Ed power facility was any kind of target, but, again, the investigation is ongoing. Homeland Security and state police were also involved.

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