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updated: 6/9/2014 4:43 PM

CTA mechanic accused of selling homemade explosives

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Associated Press

A Chicago Transit Authority mechanic is facing federal charges for selling homemade explosives to an undercover federal agent, authorities say.

A spokesman for the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives says 34-year-old John Hegarty was arrested Wednesday on a charge of distributing an explosive device in furtherance of a federal crime of violence. He was released on a $10,000 recognizance bond.

The Chicago Sun-Times reported that the CTA employee sold about 700 "flash powder" devices to an ATF agent between August 2012 and May 2014 -- even after the agent said he planned to blow up a car and a restaurant -- authorities allege.

ATF spokesman Tom Ahern says Hegarty admitted to manufacturing the explosives in the garage of a home he shares with his parents.

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