Remsen Arsenal Linked to Hate Crimes?

The owner of a cache of weapons and pipebombs on Remsen Street has been identified as Ivaylo Ivanov, an ex-con with a long criminal past, the NY Post reports. He's also raised the NYPD's interest as a suspect in the synagogue hate spree last year.  Ivanov shared the apartment at 58 Remsen with Dr. Michael C. Clatts, a noted AIDS researcher. No word on if Clatts, who is currently in Vietnam, knew of Ivaylo's stash of weapons:

NY Post: Arsenal in Brooklyn:When cops searched his fourth-floor apartment, they found six pipe bombs, sniper rifles, a handgun, shotguns, a crossbow with arrows, silencers, bomb-making equipment and other weapons – prompting an immediate evacuation of the building and others on the historic, tree-lined block.

Ivanov was charged with criminal possession of a weapon and falsely reporting an incident.

He was questioned by the joint FBI-NYPD terrorism task force.

"That would be standard for this type of situation," said NYPD Assistant Chief Michael Collins.

…Local residents said he would spin colorful tales about his past, including that he is of Russian and Bulgarian descent, a former army sniper who served in Bosnia.

He has been on the NYPD's radar at least since September, when he became a suspect in a slew of hate crimes in the area that included swastikas painted on synagogues and cars.

After his arrest, he told cops he was working for Israel's Mossad spy agency, the sources said.

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  • Hannah

    I have to say – if he’s telling the truth about being a Mossad agent, it would be a stretch for him to ALSO be responsible for anti-semetic hate crimes, no? Not that he’s telling the truth (finding a cache of weapons in your apartment after already lying to the police about how you got shot doesn’t lend itself to “truthiness”), but it strikes me as odd that he’d make that assertion.

  • JL

    I’m curious what the roommate knows (I can’t believe he didn’t know about the weapons stash, but it is possible). He sounds like an intelligent guy, so hopefully he will provide the missing info the NYPD needs.

  • Billy

    I would say that both Ivo and the roommate sound like a pair of whack jobs.
    On the positive side it is good if they actually solve the vandalism crimes. Hopefully the combo of charges will put Ivo in prison for a good stretch. The owner of the unit must have known all about it, it cannot be a large apartment. He should count his blessings it is usually the “daddy” who gets shot in these situations.

  • spm

    I read that he confessed to the hate crimes on Remsen. I’m glad that was solved as well. The article also mentioned that he’d been a subject since September which means the police must have been watching him. I am just glad they caught him before he could put any of those weapons to use.

  • JL

    SPM, where did you read he confessed to the hate crimes? It would be great to put that behind us.

  • Billy

    I agree that it would be great to put that vandalism episode behind us.
    I really think we dodged a major bullet. He could have inflicted a lot of hurt in the neighborhood with those bombs, or he could have accidentally blown himself up along with the whole house. We owe the NYPD a giant THANK YOU!

  • bornhere

    Homer — would it be possible to avoid splitting like stories? The 58 Remsen issue is an example in which readers have to bounce from pillar to “posts” to follow an essentially single thread: “Update …,” “Man Found …,” etc. Thanks.

  • ABC

    The New York Times is reporting he confessed to the hate crimes

  • Annette

    Wow…I knew him. He and his dog, Ruka, went to Squibb (Hillside Dog Park). The roommate, the CU professor guy, also sometimes walked Ruka. Extremely creepy, yeesh. I hope Ruka’s okay.

  • Jo Ann

    Building residents said Police took Ruka to the pound – hopefully, the roommate is not involved and can take the dog back.

  • Andrew Carson

    I’m very thankful for the NYPD catching this guy. I have a feeling there’s a lot more to come. It just doesn’t all add up. Him wearing a protective vest. The stories he’s allegedly told people in the neighborhood about what he’s done in his past. His roommate? Mafia? Con man? Sniper? Soldier? Shooting himself? Going to the cops? Either he is very smart and confusing people. Or he’s as bright as a lamp post.

  • Billy Reno

    I guess this jerkov fugitive from a bad Bond flick will have to surrender his de-coder ring to the Mossad for conflict of interest. I hope they feed him gefilte in prison.

  • statestreeter

    Talk about not leaving the scene of the crime…the vandalism was right on his own block. And the NYPD had a mobile command center parked across the street from the guy’s house while investigating the hate crimes. Perhaps it was a less-than-under cover stakeout. Would be interested to find out how they labeled him a suspect in the first place.

  • BMT

    What kind of dog did he have? Is he the one with the Collie like dog?

  • Jo Ann

    long legged German shepherdish dog.

  • susang

    What does he look like? Have there been any pictures of him posted?

  • weegee

    He had a knit cap pulled over his eyes at the perp walk this morning. Short chin beard and ‘stache, tall, thin, dark hair.

  • yep

    I like the way many heights residents including the BHA were pretty insistent the hate crimes were committied by someone from another neighborhood. “It could NEVER be someone who would live up here”. Now, does the NYPD get the reward?

  • ABC

    here’s his pic (dog is Ruka)

    I must say as soon as I heard he had a dog and went to Hillside, I had a feeling it was this guy. Very sweet dog. Hope someone has a home for him (or her?)

    Who said it could never be someone from here? I think you should link what BHS person said that.

  • Xris (Flatbush Gardener)

    How long before Law & Order “rips” this off from the headlines?

  • bklyn20

    Both guys are friendly, but Ivo was much more outgoing. He always had some unusual story to tell. This is NYC — lots of people are characters and most of the time that just makes life more interesting. While I thought he was a former military guy from speaking to him, and I imagined he might have a gun at home (hopefully legal) I never thought Pickatinny Arsenal was around the corner! As for the swastikas, I always thought it was a local or someone who knew the Heights well. Many people in the Heights don’t know where Columbia Place is, much less people from elsewhere. The police told me that Ruka is in the pound (CACC) and would not be killed. I hope they are correct. A friend on Remsen thought Ruka was in the Brooklyn shelter on Linden Blvd in East NY. Hope we can get him out soon — does anyone know if Michael is back?

  • Annette

    Ruka is a VERY sweet male German shepherd mix, about 7 or 8 years olD by now. I showed my boyfried the photo from Hillside’s web site yesterday; even though I only knew Ruka’s name and there were no photos in the papers, I just *KNEW* it was this guy. I hope someone will get Ruka out, he must be terrified! I will help with boarding expenses if that’s an option. And I know Penny Kaufman (with Salty) who lives in the building, but have no contact info for her – maybe she knows how to reach someone? She is (or used to be) on the board.

  • Jenny

    I just heard there was a dog involved. I too would be happy to help out in any way with Ruka. I don’t trust pounds, too many people involved and mistakes can be made. Does anyone know the current status yet? Will the roomate retrieve the dog or will the comminity have to step in and try and find him a home? I would love to help in anyway. I have 3 cats so keeping him myself is not an option, but would be happy to chip in with expenses.

  • nabeguy

    It never ceases to amaze me that any story that involves a pet seems to get sidetracked by that one fact. I love my pets (2 cats, two hamsters) as much as the next person, but people, let’s try to stay focused on the fact that this man was KEEPING PIPE BOMBS IN HIS APARTMENT! And to those who say they “thought” or “just knew” it was this guy, next time call 311 even if you just have a suspicion. It’s anonymous.

  • Annette

    I don’t live in the Heights any longer and have no way of contacting Penny, but Sammy at Pets Emporium on Montague knows her and can very likely relay a message. Either that or maybe a note at the building about other family or friends that culd take Ruka? I live in the Bronx now, so I have no Heights access at all, but I will help as much as I can. I do know Ruka, though, and he is very sweet. He gets along with other dogs, so far as I know, and I thought he (owner) said they had a cat, too, but now I’m not sure.

  • ABC

    One time I “just knew” my neighbor was the Unabomber. Turns out he’s a judge — and a nice guy! I’m not calling out the feds based on my faulty hunch. (Wasn’t this a 30 Rock episode?)

    I said I knew once it was reported that he had a dog and went to hillside — that took the universe of crazy people down to a select few. Besides, I’m not sure what good it would have done; sounds like the police had been at his place several times and missed the cache.

  • Annette

    Nabe Guy:
    You can speak to someone and/or know of him and not know he was up to anything suspicious. I mean his own neighbors didn’t know anything. And the whole pet factor not withstanding, Ruka is in a KILL shelter; why should he lose his life for his owner’s stupidity??

  • 7th Cir.

    ABC — was it Judge Frank Easterbrook?

  • anon

    why do so many folks living in over-crowded over-priced neighborhoods only care about, and relate to, animals? This guy almost blew up half of remsen street and likes to paint swatstikas on local synagogues. yet the most urgent question some folks have is: how’s the doggie? wake up people! you and the doggie are very close to being blown to kingdom come by nuthatches like ivo.

  • mz

    amazing the focus seems to be on the dog . not the desecration of houses of worship bombs in the building sniper weapons.
    Ruka will be fine who is watching out for us ?