NEWARK, N.J. – A Passaic County, N.J., man was arrested at Newark Liberty International Airport Tuesday morning, April 26, after Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officers detected a handgun in the traveler’s carry-on bag. It marked the second firearm caught by TSA officers at Newark so far this month.
TSA officers detected the .32 caliber gun in its holster tucked into the man’s backpack as he was passing through one of the airport checkpoints at about 7 a.m. The TSA officer who was staffing the checkpoint X-ray machine detected the handgun in the backpack as it passed along the conveyor belt. It was loaded with five bullets, including one in the chamber. The bullets were hollow-point bullets, which are designed to maximize harm and are known to be more deadly than other bullets.
TSA officers immediately contacted the Port Authority Police Department, which responded to the checkpoint, confiscated the gun and arrested the Paterson, N.J., resident on state weapons charges.
As a reminder, weapons—including firearms, firearm parts and ammunition—are not permitted in carry-on bags. Travelers who bring firearms to the checkpoint are subject to criminal charges from law enforcement and civil penalties from TSA of up to $11,000.
Passengers are responsible for the contents of bags they bring to the security checkpoint, and TSA’s advice to passengers is to look through bags thoroughly before coming to the airport to make sure there are no illegal or prohibited items.
Travelers should familiarize themselves with state and local firearm laws for each point of travel prior to departure.