Boston Man Had Grenade, Knives, Gas Mask at LAX

By Deanne Katz, Esq. on October 11, 2012 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

If you thought we were all on board with the TSA policies about weapons and other dangerous materials in airports, you'd be wrong.

Yongda Huang Harris was traveling home from Japan when he was stopped at LAX. Customs officials noted he was wearing a bullet-proof vest and fireproof leggings under a trench coat. Homeland Security officials then investigated his luggage.

In Harris's checked luggage they found a long list of weapons and other troubling materials such as body bags and Tyvek suits. Of all the weapons found, only one was listed on his customs declaration.

Harris stated he was bringing a knife into the country but he also had a smoke grenade, a hatchet, multiple knives, and three leather-coated lead-filled billy clubs.

The smoke grenade is something that no one is allowed to fly with. The other weapons are permitted in checked luggage but travelers must declare them at the border when they return from international travel.

Harris was taken into custody on Friday and so far has not cooperated with authorities, reports CBS News.

The Department of Homeland Security and the Transportation Security Administration have a number of regulations in place to keep travelers safe. Travelers who violate those rules have also violated federal law.

The rules cover a variety of subjects including what passengers can bring in their checked bags and in their carry-on luggage. Even if the materials aren't on the prohibited list, they could still be problematic depending on the circumstances.

Before you fly, make sure your belongings won't get you in trouble. Check TSA's rules about what's allowed and what's not.

Harris has been charged with one count of transporting hazardous materials but as more information comes out those charges could change.

A prosecutor brings charges based on available evidence and as an investigation continues those charges could change. Once the suspect is arraigned and enters a plea then the charges are final.

Homeland Security officials are currently investigating why Harris was traveling with the weapons. Japan may also help shed light on the issue.

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