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Mark Meckler of the Tea Party Patriots Arrested in New York

The New York Daily News is reporting that co-founder of the local nevada County Tea Party group was arrested at LaGuardia Airport Thursday for illegally trying to bring a pistol and ammunition aboard a plane, authorities said.

Mark Meckler of the Tea Party Patriots had a Glock 27 pistol and 19 bullets in a locked gun box — but he didn’t have a New York State permit for the firepower, which he told authorities he needs because he gets threats.

Meckler, 49, handed the gun box to a Delta Airlines ticket agent around 5 a.m. Thursday, Queens prosecutors said. It was discovered during a pre-flight check.

Meckler, of Grass Valley, Calif., faces up to 15 years in prison on a charge of criminal possession of a weapon in the second degree, a Class C felony. He was released following arraignment.

“Before leaving home, passengers should acquaint themselves with the weapon laws of the jurisdiction that they are visiting and comply with any and all legal requirements if they choose to travel with a weapon,” said Queens District Attorney Richard Brown.

“Otherwise, they may find themselves being arrested and charged with a felony — as is what occurred in this case.”

Meckler had been in New York since Dec. 11.

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