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BWI airport security finds missile launcher in Texas man’s checked bag

U.S. Marine Lance Cpl. Zachary Hicks, a rifleman with Marine Rotational Force Europe 17.1, fires an AT-4 missile launcher while 1st Lt. Stefan Tuel observes at a live-fire range during Exercise Platinum Eagle 17.2, at Babadag Training Area, Romania, May 3, 2017. Platinum Eagle allowed Marines to improve and maintain proficiency with various weapons systems while working with NATO Allies and partner nations. A rotational U.S. presence in the Black Sea region significantly increases the level of cooperation between militaries in training activities and exercises through which they develop their capabilities and interoperability. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Sarah N. Petrock/Released)

Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport officials detained a Texas man after an unloaded missile launcher was found in his checked bag.

The man, of Jacksonville, Texas, was tracked down by airport police after Transportation Security Administration officers found the missile launcher in his bag. It was not loaded, but he was detained for questioning, officials said.

The man told security he was active duty military and was bringing home the launcher — complete with two stickers including one that reads “Griffin Missile” — from Kuwait.

Military weapons are not permitted in checked or carry-on bags, but also not illegal, said Lisa Farbstein, TSA spokeswoman.

The man was not arrested and allowed to catch his flight, she said.

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The last time a person was caught with a similar weapon was when a Florida man carried a rocket propelled grenade launcher at Lehigh Valley International Airport in Pennsylvania, Farbstein said.

Farbstein said she couldn’t recall a person recently being caught with such a weapon at BWI, thought it’s not uncommon for TSA personnel to confiscate firearms being transported illegally and to arrest the traveler.

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© 2019 The Baltimore Sun

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.