09/18/2007

Ill. police seize more than 600 guns

The Chicago Tribune

LAKE COUNTY, Ill. In what is believed to be the largest gun bust in Lake County history, undercover police seized more than 600 weapons from the home of a Mundelein man who allegedly was illegally selling guns from his residence, authorities said Monday.

Michael P. Sonka, 55, of the 900 block of Granville Street was arrested at his home Friday after he allegedly sold three 9 mm semiautomatic handguns and five boxes of 9 mm bullets to undercover officers from the Lake County Metropolitan Enforcement Group.

"It's definitely the largest gun seizure in Lake County," said Illinois State Police Master Sgt. Larry Lindenman, the enforcement group's director.

Sonka allegedly lacked the Federal Firearms License required for the sale of guns and failed to implement the required three-day waiting period before making the sale to the undercover officers.

After the weapons sale, authorities said, officers from the enforcement group and the Mundelein Police Department searched Sonka's home, where an additional 636 firearms were found, including rifles, submachine guns and .50-caliber handguns.

"The guns were everywhere," Lindenman said.

Sonka, who had lost his firearms license four months ago, faces trial on a felony count of illegal gun sales, Lindenman said.

Copyright 2007 Chicago Tribune

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