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Jars of peanut butter set off an airport alarm in New York, according to the TSA. Now a man is arrested

Peanut butter jars hidden in a traveler’s checked luggage at a New York airport set off an alarm that resulted in his arrest.

On Thursday, Dec. 22, TSA agents at John F. Kennedy International Airport opened the checked bag after it triggered an alarm while passing through an X-ray, according to an agency statement.

They removed two jars of JIF Creamy Peanut Butter from the luggage, each containing pieces of a disassembled semi-automatic handgun “artfully concealed inside”, the agency said.

Parts, including a magazine loaded with .22 caliber bullets, were encased in plastic and embedded in peanut butter, according to the agency.

When they found the weapon, officials contacted police who confiscated the parts of the weapon and tracked down the man who owned the luggage in an airport terminal, the agency said. The man, a resident of Rhode Island, was arrested.

“Our officers are doing their job well and focused on their mission, especially during the busy holiday travel season,” said John Essig, TSA Director of Federal Security for JFK Airport.

The man, whose name has not been released, could be slapped with a civil fine of up to $15,000, according to the TSA.

For firearms to be transported legally on an airplane, they must be placed in checked baggage, properly packed and unloaded, and declared at the check-in counter, the agency said. The person checking the weapon must also have an appropriate license.

Earlier this year, officials at a Pennsylvania airport discovered vaping cartridges and plastic-wrapped marijuana concealed in a peanut butter jar after an alarm sounded, according to an earlier McClatchy News report. .

So far in 2022, 6,301 firearms have been intercepted at airport security checkpoints, surpassing the previous record from 2021, according to the TSA. Eighty-eight percent of firearms found were loaded.

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