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Gun Discovered at Port Columbus

COLUMBUS -- A gun was discovered in the carry-on luggage of a Port Columbus International Airport traveler Wednesday morning. 

Transportation Security Administration said the Beretta .22 was unloaded.

The suspect, who was traveling from Columbus to Fort Lauderdale, was cited for criminal trespassing. 

TSA also has the ability to impose a civil penalty, fines for which can range from $250 to $11,000 for firearms brought to a security checkpoint.

This was the first firearm to be discovered in carry-on luggage at Port Columbus International Airport this calendar year, according to a TSA spokesperson.

Last year, agents discovered an average of 35 firearms per week across the country.

TSA officials said firearms can be transported in checked bags if they are unloaded and declared to the airline. They are prohibited in carry-on bags, however.

The TSA uses imaging technology to screen passengers for items that could be hidden under clothing while X-ray units screen all carry-on baggage.

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