Miami, FL – Just three weeks after rapper Lil Wayne endorsed President Donald Trump’s re-election bid, the rapper was charged with federal gun crimes in connection with an incident that occurred back in December of 2019.
The incident occurred when Lil Wayne, whose real name is Dwayne Michael Carter Jr., and his entourage landed in Miami on Dec. 23, 2019 in a private plane, the Associated Press reported.
Police said that Carter’s luggage was searched after he arrived and officers found a gold-plated handgun in one of the 38 year old’s suitcases.
Charging documents filed in Miami federal court said the rapper was caught in possession of a gun and ammunition despite the fact he knew he had a felony on his record that prohibited it, the Associated Press reported.
A search warrant showed that Carter told police when the pistol was found that the gun had been a Father’s Day gift.
Investigators also reported finding illegal drugs in his luggage, too, but the musician wasn’t charged for any of that, the Associated Press reported.
The gun charge comes from a weapons conviction that the rapper got in New York City back in 2007, CNN reported.
On that occasion, police searched Carter’s tour bus outside of the Beacon Theater and found a loaded .40-caliber pistol.
Attorneys for the musician said at the time that the gun belonged to somebody else, but Carter took a plea deal and was sentenced to a year in prison, according to CNN.
He served eight months in federal prison before he was released and afterwards he was prohibited from owning or possessing firearms under federal law because of the felony conviction, the Associated Press reported.
Carter has sold more than 120 million records and won five Grammy awards.
He has his own record label – Young Money Entertainment – and owns a home in Miami Beach, according to the Associated Press.
The rapper’s lawyer questioned whether the charges filed against him on Tuesday were appropriate.
Attorney Howard Srebnick said there were legal questions about whether the simple possession of a gun by a felon not judged to be dangerous actually fit the definition of a crime, the Associated Press reported.
“Carter is charged with possessing a gold-plated handgun in his luggage on a private plane,” Srebnick said. “There is no allegation that he ever fired it, brandished it, used it, or threatened to use it. There is no allegation that he is a dangerous person.”
“The charge is that because he was convicted of a felony in the past, he is prohibited from possessing a firearm,” he added, according to CNN.
A second attorney for the rapper said that Carter was being overcharged.
“The federal sentencing guidelines call for substantially lower and I would not look at the maximum exposure to decide anyone’s sentence and all the facts need to be thoroughly reviewed,” Ronald Richards told CNN in an email.
Carter is due to face the federal weapons charges in court in Miami on Dec. 11, the Associated Press reported.
The rapper was already facing public criticism from many of his fans for his endorsement of President Trump on Oct. 29.
Carter met with the President at the White House and discussed plans for the “Platinum Plan” created by the Trump administration to help boost struggling African American communities.
Just had a great meeting with @realdonaldtrump @potus besides what he’s done so far with criminal reform, the platinum plan is going to give the community real ownership. He listened to what we had to say today and assured he will and can get it done. 🤙🏾 pic.twitter.com/Q9c5k1yMWf
— Lil Wayne WEEZY F (@LilTunechi) October 29, 2020
“Yall can have him,” Marshall Hunt tweeted in reply when the rapper shared his picture with President Trump. “He is not a good representation of any African American man that I espouse to be or would want any of my children to look up too. All skin folk ain’t kin folk! Please take him…..He will soon find out how many Trumpers buy his music.”