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Conn. Man Who Had Arsenal Of Explosives, Guns In Home Pleads Not Guilty

Joseph Callahan Said He Accumulated Explosives Over Time
Joseph Callahan outside court in Bridgeport on Oct. 16, 2013 (credit: CBS 2)

Joseph Callahan outside court in Bridgeport on Oct. 16, 2013 (credit: CBS 2)

BRIDGEPORT, Conn. (CBSNewYork/AP)A Connecticut man who police say claimed he was making a bomb for Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards pleaded not guilty Tuesday to explosives charges.

Joseph Callahan, 69, of Fairfield pleaded not guilty in Bridgeport Superior Court to 112 counts of illegal possession of explosives and other charges.

“My client maintains his innocence,” Callahan’s attorney, Richard Meehan, said outside of court. “We are engaging in discussions with the state’s attorney in an effort to resolve these charges. But if that doesn’t succeed, we are preparing to move forward with the process.”

Callahan claimed to be making a bomb for Richards, according to an arrest warrant.

“A friend of Mr. Callahan nine years ago met Keith Richards, and he (Callahan) knew Keith Richards liked pyrotechnics so he built this device in the event he met Keith Richards,” Meehan said.

Meehan said Callahan received a permit in July from the U.S. Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms to possess explosives.

Police say Callahan also claimed to have detonation cords for rockets and chemicals used in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing and the 1995 bombing of the federal office building in Oklahoma City.

Authorities said they found more than 100 explosive devices in Callahan’s home. Police say Callahan told them he played with explosives as a hobby.

Callahan’s lawyer says his client never intended to hurt anyone.

On Oct. 1, police responded to Callahan’s Bronson Road home and discovered hazardous chemicals, up to 200 guns, tens of thousands of rounds of ammunition, explosive devices and 250 gallons of jet fuel, officials said.

“I never had any malintent,” Callahan said last month. “I just have been at it a long time, accumulated some stuff. The quantities I can see were too large for a neighborhood…A rocket itself will burn 50 or 60 pounds of fuel each load, so maybe I had enough to make 10 motors, and I never did it.”

Callahan worked for years at Dupont and Remington.

His cache of weapons and explosives were discovered after Callahan called police to report a suspected break-in.

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