Juelz Santana's recent legal saga has yet another update. The rapper has pleaded not guilty to gun and drug charges following an incident at Newark Liberty International Airport last week, Page Six reports.
Santana (whose real name is LaRon James) showed up at New Jersey's Essex County Superior Court on Wednesday, where he gave his plea to two state weapons charges and a drug possession charge. His next court hearing is scheduled for April 9. The rapper made headlines when he fled the airport after TSA had discovered a loaded firearm in one of his carry-on bags. He later turned himself in after being caught with the weapon.
The 36-year-old was reportedly booked for unlawful possession of a weapon, possession of a controlled dangerous substance, and an "unspecified federal warrant." Following the incident, authorities later revealed Santana also had oxycodone pills (which he didn’t have a prescription for) along with the loaded .38-caliber handgun in his carry-on bag. The prescription drugs caused him to be slapped with a felony charge of possession of a controlled dangerous substance.
"Upon seeing that his bag had garnered additional attention from the TSA security screening, James retreated from the security checkpoint area without his belongings and departed Newark Airport in a taxi," the criminal complaint from the airport incident states. Santana has been forbidden from having a gun following a 2013 drug conviction.
He will stay behind bars pending a preliminary hearing on a federal weapons charge, including possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and carrying a weapon on an aircraft, NJ.com reports. The hearing is scheduled for March 26. In 2011, the rapper was arrested for a very similar event. Following a raid on his New Jersey recording studio, he was met with weapons and drug charges.