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FBI Probes Philly Airport Gun Case

August 27, 2002

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PHILADELPHIA (AP) _ A woman charged with carrying a loaded gun into a terminal at Philadelphia International Airport may have carried the same weapon undetected past security screeners in Atlanta, the FBI said Monday.

Nancy Keller was arrested Sunday after she put a carryon bag containing a .357-caliber handgun through an X-ray machine, authorities said.

Keller, 37, of Huntersville, N.C., told an FBI agent that the gun belonged to her husband and she wasn’t aware it was inside the bag. She was charged with boarding an aircraft with a concealed weapon.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Jacob Hart ordered Keller released on $100,000 unsecured bond Monday. She was ordered to give up her passport, restrict her travels and stay out of airports.

Keller declined to address the charges outside the courtroom. When a reporter asked if the gun belonged to a relative, Keller said, ``something like that.″

FBI spokeswoman Linda Vizi said Keller had arrived on a US Airways flight from Atlanta and was making a connection that required her to leave and re-enter the airport’s secure zone.

``Obviously we will look into the circumstances of what happened,″ said Lanii Thomas, spokeswoman for Atlanta’s Hartsfield International Airport.

No flights were delayed, officials said.

Court papers said airport screeners found the gun loaded with 13 rounds. The bag also contained a 12-round clip labeled ``restricted law enforcement, government use only.″ Federal law bars civilians from possessing magazines that can hold more than 10 rounds.

Vizi said she didn’t know whether Keller’s husband worked in law enforcement.

US Airways spokesman John Bronson referred questions to authorities. A spokesman for the Transportation Security Administration in Washington declined to provide details.

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