New York

Juelz Santana Indicted for Trying to Bring Loaded Gun Onto Plane at Newark Airport: Feds

The indictment stems from a bizarre March 9 incident at Newark Liberty International Airport

What to Know

  • Rapper Juelz Santana ran from Newark Liberty International Airport on March 9 after TSA agents found a gun in his bag, sources tell News 4
  • He has been indicted on federal weapons charges, prosecutors said Wednesday
  • Santana previously pleaded not guilty to two state weapons charges and a drug possession charge in connection with the March fray

Rapper Juelz Santana has been indicted for allegedly trying to bring a loaded gun onto a plane at Newark Liberty International Airport in March, a case that made national headlines as the 36-year-old from New Jersey fled the scene after security agents found the weapon and remained on the run for days before surrendering.

The federal indictment charges Santana, whose real name is LaRon James, with possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and trying to carry a weapon on an aircraft, prosecutors said Wednesday. 

Santana previously pleaded not guilty to two state weapons charges and a drug possession charge in connection with the March 9 fray. 

Authorities say security personnel found a loaded .38-caliber handgun and oxycodone pills he didn't have a prescription for in a carry-on bag containing his identification. They say he fled the area, leaving two bags behind, and turned himself in three days later.

According to TSA regulations, bringing a weapon to an airport security checkpoint is punishable by a fine and in some cases could lead to an arrest. Fines for loaded guns can top $9,800.

Santana, who was born in New York City but now lives in Totowa, was jailed for some time following his apprehension but appears to have been released in early April. His reps have not responded to NBC 4 New York's requests for comment on the case. If convicted, he'll have to forfeit his gun and ammo.

Santana's prior convictions include a guilty plea to a fourth-degree pot distribution charge stemming from a February 2011 and a guilty plea to a charge of third-degree making a terroristic threat to commit a crime of violence in another case. He also pleaded guilty to two offenses connected to two other 2011 cases, reported.

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