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Orlando Traffic Stop Nets Grenade Launcher

It started as a routine traffic stop but ended with Orlando officers seizing a small arsenal of powerful firearms including a 37 mm grenade launcher.

Orlando police stopped Fritz Joseph, of Miami, and Delroy Blake, of Casselberry, in a white Audi as the two rolled through a red light and made a right turn without coming to a complete stop, an arrest report said.

The stop happened near Pine Hills Road and North Lane about 4 p.m. Wednesday.

When police asked 33-year-old Joseph for his driver's license, he said he didn't have it but 29-year-old Blake handed his over. As the men were questioned, police noticed two rectangular gun boxes in the back seat of the sports car, the report said.

Underneath the boxes police could see the butts of two rifles poking out of a black bag. But when asked if there were weapons in the vehicle, the men said they were not transporting firearms, the report said.

Once police searched the car they found four rifles, seven handguns, two Tec-9s and one grenade launcher. Also in the car were 16 magazines full of ammunition for various weapons.

Of the 14 firearms found, one Smith & Wesson handgun, one Beretta handgun and one Kel Tec handgun had all been reported stolen to either the Orlando Police Department or the Lakeland Police Department.

It's not clear how Joseph and Blake got the weapons or what they planned to do with them. Both men remained in the Orange County Jail Thursday morning.

Joseph faces more than one dozen weapons possession charges. Both he and Blake also face grand theft charges related to the stolen handguns.

Copyright 2014 - Orlando Sentinel

McClatchy-Tribune News Service