Ronkonkoma, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – A Long Island family man and owner of an established sporting goods store faces up to 25 years in prison.
Police say one of them was used by a man to kill his young son.
“That was the weapon used to kill my son,” said Maria Busone. She was devastated to learn that the hunting rifle her estranged boyfriend used to murder their toddler son Jovani Ligurgo in 2018 and then kill himself was allegedly bought and sold illegally.
Watch: Officials Announce Indictment Against Gun Store Owner
Pergan is accused of possession and sale of illegal assault firearms and high capacity gun magazines.
Sini described several of the weapons. He said one could “put a hole in a tank,” and others could fire 50 rounds in a matter of seconds or could be concealed under a coat.
Investigators say they seized 116 assault rifles, 820 high capacity magazines from Chester’s Hunting and Fishing store, including the weapon in the high profile kidnap-murder-suicide case.
“This isn’t some back alley gun salesman. This is a man operating a family business over 18 years,” said defense attorney Anthony Lapinta.
Lapinta said although his client was not licensed in New York, he did have a federal license and is not guilty of the charges.
“If I’d known that gun was illegal, I would have taken it out of my house immediately,” said Maria.
Following his arrest, Chester Pergan surrendered his federal firearms license to buy and sell weapons. His store is closed and is now out of business, CBS2’s Jennifer McLogan reported.
“This was a decision he made to line his pockets. A decision with tragic consequences for our community,” Sini said.
The arrest of the gun seller and the recovery of the weapon used in her 2-year-old’s murder has opened old wounds for Maria.
“It’s heartbreaking,” she said.
Wounds, she says, that will never heal.
The judge set bond for Chester Pergan at $800,000.
Maria Busone says she watched the case every step of the way.