A New Orleans man pleaded guilty to federal gun and drug charges Thursday (Jan. 11), just more than a year after he tried to board a plane with a loaded gun in his carry-on bag, according to interim U.S. Attorney Duane A. Evans’ office.
Kenzie Faulk, 58, was caught with the fully loaded .38-caliber revolver on Oct. 16, 2016, as he was trying to board a Southwest Airlines flight from New Orleans to Las Vegas, with a connecting flight to Oakland, Calif., federal court documents show.
TSA agents at Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport spotted the gun in Faulk’s carry-on bag as the luggage went through the x-ray scanner.
Though the gun was confiscated, Faulk was allowed to board his flight, court documents show.
Faulk was arrested three days later, on Oct. 19, when he returned to the New Orleans airport.
Faulk’s arrest, on a charge of felon in possession of a firearm, led FBI agents to discover a marijuana-dealing conspiracy involving Faulk. FBI agents began listening to recordings of Faulk’s jailhouse phone calls and heard Faulk asking his girlfriend to retrieve a package he had shipped from California to New Orleans prior to his arrest.
While interviewing Faulk’s girlfriend, agents found out that she had picked up the shipment, which arrived in a wooden crate nail-bolted shut, from a local business and took the package to Faulk’s home.
FBI agents gained permission to search Faulk’s home and found a wooden crate that had been shipped from Oakland to New Orleans and was addressed to Faulk. Inside, agents found three cellophane-wrapped packages of high-grade marijuana.
Faulk pleaded guilty to possessing a firearm while being a convicted felon and conspiracy to possess marijuana with the intent to distribute. Faulk was previously convicted in California in September 1997 of possession with intent to distribute cocaine and being a felon in possession of a firearm.
Judge Nannette Jolivette-Brown will sentence Faulk on April 5. He faces up to 10 years in prison for the gun charge and up to five years in prison for participating in a drug conspiracy.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Brittany L. Reed is in charge of the prosecution.