Convicted felon admits trying to bring loaded gun on plane at Newark Airport

NEWARK, NJ — Desmond Herring, 48, of Newburgh, N.Y., has admitted to possessing a stolen and loaded firearm that he tried to get through security at Newark Liberty International Airport, U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger announced April 7.

Herring pleaded guilty on April 7 by videoconference before U.S. District Judge Claire C. Cecchi to an information charging him with one count of possession of a firearm and ammunition by a convicted felon and one count of carrying a weapon on an aircraft.

According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court, on Nov. 29, 2021, Herring submitted a carry-on bag for inspection at Newark Liberty International Airport. During the screening of Herring’s luggage, a Transportation Security Administration agent identified ammunition and a suspected firearm and contacted the Port Authority Police Department. Upon seeing that his bag had attracted additional attention, Herring left the security checkpoint area without his bag and walked to a departure gate for his flight to Atlanta, Ga.

Further investigation of Herring’s bag revealed that it contained a 9 mm pistol, 10 rounds of 9 mm ammunition loaded into a magazine and 150 additional rounds of 9 mm ammunition. Herring was prohibited from possessing a firearm due to a 2010 federal conviction for conspiracy to distribute controlled substances.

Both charges carry a maximum potential penalty of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. Sentencing is scheduled for Aug. 17.