Arroyo weapons cache shown in court

Sheriff’s investigators displayed illegal weapons allegedly possessed by an Arroyo Grande man in what they have called one of the biggest local arms busts in 25 years.

Howard Alan Krinsky, 62, was in Superior Court on Tuesday to stand trial for six counts of weapons-related crimes, including possession and sale of machine guns.

Prosecutors have documented 26 illegal weapons they found in Krinsky’s home after serving a search warrant, including a cannon and semiautomatic and fully automatic rifles.

Krinsky has pleaded not guilty to the charges, and his lawyer, Guy Galambos, spent much of Tuesday questioning sheriff’s detective Keith Scott on the nearly 300 personal items collected from the defendant’s residence — including legal handguns, knives and sleeping bags.

Galambos questioned Scott on why investigators took so many of Krinsky’s possessions.

Scott explained that some of the items, including the knives, were believed to be dangerous, and detectives knew the house would be vacant for an unknown period of time after Krinsky’s arrest, and authorities feared a break-in.

Other personal items were collected to establish Krinsky’s sole occupancy of the home, and the weapons that weren’t obviously illegal were taken to make sure of their legality, Scott said.

During questioning from prosecutor Karen Gray, Scott said Krinsky admitted providing firearms to a man named Alan Garrison.

Garrison was arrested in 2007 on charges of selling firearms to undercover law enforcement agents after a bondsman who was looking for him stumbled upon the cache of weapons at Krinsky’s home.

Sheriff’s investigator John Marrs, a firearms expert, explained the illegality of numerous other weapons, including a 7-foot-long antitank warfare device allegedly in Krinsky’s possession. Marrs called the weapon a destructive device because of the large diameter of the barrel.

Other weapons put into evidence that Marrs testified about included semiautomatic and fully automatic rifles, including an AR15 and an AK47.

The trial resumes at 1:30 p.m. today in Superior Court Judge Michael Duffy’s courtroom.