08:47 GMT30 November 2020
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    Lil Wayne, who appeared to endorse President Donald Trump's re-election campaign last month, was charged by federal agents in connection with a December 2019 raid on a private jet he was travelling on at Miami's Opa-locka airport. Agents recovered a gold-plated handgun, ammunition, drugs and bundles of cash.

    US Rapper Lil Wayne has been charged by federal prosecutors in Florida with illegally possessing a gold-plated pistol and ammunition.

    The US Attorney's office for Florida's Southern District charged the hip-hop artist, born Dwayne Michael Carter Jr., with one count of possession of a firearm and ammunition by a convicted felon, his attorney, Howard Srebnick, confirmed to website TMZ.

    The charges date back to 23 December, 2019, when federal agents searched a private jet that Carter was travelling on at Miami's Opa-locka Airport. They found a gold-plated .45-calibre pistol, ammunition, narcotics, including heroin, ecstasy, cocaine and marijuana, and almost $26,000 in cash.

    The musician, who is banned from owning a gun following his 2009 firearms-related conviction in New York state, claimed that the gun was a Father's Day gift.

    "There is no allegation that he ever fired it, brandished it, used it or threatened to use it," Srebnick said. "There is no allegation that he is a dangerous person."

    The attorney added: "The charge is that because he was convicted of a felony in the past, he is prohibited from possessing a firearm."

    Carter late last month tweeted a photo of himself meeting Trump, praising the latter's 'Platinum Plan' for black communities and appearing to endorse the incumbent president's re-election bid, prompting the Black rapper's white girlfriend, model Denise Bidot, to publicly break up with him.

    US presidents often issue pardons for convicted felons and former close associates who have been imprisoned in the final days of their administration.

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    Florida, Miami, Donald Trump, Lil Wayne
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