ATLANTA -- An AirTran Airlines employee has been sentenced to 10 years in prison for smuggling cocaine and a machine gun through airport security.
Rasondo Maurice Norris admitted in court that he carried a MAC-11 machine gun, silencer, magazine and five kilograms of cocaine through Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport last year.
The 30-year-old Stone Mountain man was convicted in October of the charges against him.
According to information presented in federal court, Norris was a baggage handler for AirTran. Homeland Security learned that Norris was accepting money to use his security clearance to help criminals smuggle contraband onto planes.
On three different occasions in May and June of 2013, undercover agents paid Norris to carry backpacks containing illicit items, including weapons and drugs, through airport security checkpoints. The defendant received between $600 and $800 for each trip.
"This defendant abused his position to enrich himself without any regard for the harm that could have resulted from his actions," Homeland Security Investigations Atlanta special agent Brock Nicholson said in a statement. "HSI special agents will continue to work closely with our partners at Hartsfield-Jackson to ensure the safety of the traveling public."
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