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Statement by Secretary Johnson Regarding Firearms Discovered by the Transportation Security Administration

Release Date: 
November 5, 2014

For Immediate Release
DHS Press Office
Contact: 202-282-8010

I have said many times that in homeland security no news is good news, and no news is often the result of the hard work and vigilance of our men and women in this Department.

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is the component of this Department that interacts with the public the most. Approximately 1.8 million people a day are screened by TSA before boarding an aircraft in this country. Many members of the traveling public welcome TSA Pre✓™ and other recent innovations they see that TSA has made under the leadership of Administrator John Pistole.

Less well known is the actual difference TSA makes daily to aviation security.

Just within the first 10 months of this calendar year, TSA has discovered a total of 1,855 firearms in the carry-on baggage of those about to board an aircraft; 1,471 of which were loaded. In the same period a total, a total of 3,048 firearms, firearm components, replica firearms, stun guns, and other similar dangerous objects have been discovered by TSA from passengers in their carry-on luggage. Last week alone, TSA discovered 41 firearms (34 of which were loaded), 16 stun guns, four replica grenades, a 13-inch cane sword, and a box-cutter found concealed in the lining of a carry-on bag. When firearms are discovered by TSA, they are turned over to local law enforcement authorities, resulting in an arrest in about 20 percent of the cases (see the images that accompany this statement).

This is an example of the good work the men and women of the Department of Homeland Security perform on behalf of the American people.

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Last Published Date: November 5, 2014
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