SANTA ANA, Calif. – Rapper Snoop Dogg was charged Thursday with carrying a dangerous weapon — an illegal collapsible baton — at John Wayne International Airport.
The Orange County district attorney filed a lone count of felony possession of a deadly weapon against the rapper, whose real name is Calvin Broadus.
If convicted, the 35-year-old rapper could be sentenced to three years in prison. A warrant, with bail set at $150,000, was issued for his arrest, prosecutors said.
"These charges are bogus. The DA knows that, Snoop knows that. If this goes to trial, we will win," the rapper's Century City lawyer Donald Etra said Thursday afternoon.
On Sept. 27, 2006, the entertainer arrived at John Wayne Airport with two bodyguards to catch a flight to San Francisco, investigators said.
Security officers scanning his carryon luggage spotted a long object in his computer bag and asked to search inside, where a 20-inch collapsible baton was found, prosecutors said. The baton collapses to 8 inches long.
Deputy District Attorney Andre Manssourian said the weapon is dangerous and illegal. The rapper told deputies at the time of his arrest that the baton was a prop for a movie, sheriff's spokesman Jim Amormino said.
On Oct. 26 in Burbank, the rapper was arrested at Bob Hope Airport for investigation of illegal drug and gun possession. He posted $35,000 bail and was ordered to appear in court Dec. 12.
Airport police officers stopped Broadus at a loading zone for a vehicle code violation. When officers searched the vehicle they found a gun and marijuana, authorities said.
"There was no basis for this arrest," Etra said earlier. "We believe that once this is cleared up, all charges will be dismissed."
The rapper has had problems at airports before.
In May, he accepted responsibility for using "threatening words or behavior" in an April brawl at Heathrow Airport in London.
Broadus and five other men were arrested on charges of violent disorder and starting a brawl after some members of the rapper's party were denied entry to British Airways' first-class lounge.
Seven officers received minor injuries — mainly cuts and bruises — and one suffered a fracture to the hand.
British Airways said it has banned Broadus from future travel on the airline.
The rapper was convicted in 1990 of cocaine possession and was charged with gun possession after a 1993 traffic stop. Facing a possible three years in prison, he pleaded guilty in exchange for three years' probation and his promise to make anti-violence public service announcements.
He also was acquitted of murder in 1996 following the death of an alleged street gang member killed by gunfire from the vehicle Broadus was traveling in.