Rapper Lil Wayne has pleaded guilty on Friday to a federal charge that he possessed a weapon despite being a convicted felon following a 2019 search of a private plane in the Miami area.
The rapper, whose real name is Dwayne Michael Carter, entered the plea during a hearing held remotely before U.S. District Judge Kathleen Williams. “Your honor, I plead guilty to the charge,” Carter told the judge.
Williams set a Jan. 28 sentencing date. The charge carries a maximum prison sentence of 10 years, but it’s likely Carter would get far less time than that. He’s free on $250,000 bail but had to surrender his passport.
Authorities said the 38-year-old rapper acknowledged possessing a .45 caliber, gold-plated handgun and six rounds of ammunition after his luggage was searched upon arriving in Miami on Dec. 23, 2019, from California. A search warrant said Carter told investigators the gun was a Father’s Day gift.
The charge stems from a weapons conviction of Carter in New York more than a decade ago, for which he was sentenced to eight months in prison. Convicted felons are barred under federal law from possessing firearms.
Carter’s lawyer, Howard Srebnick, said he considered a motion to suppress the search of the plane as a violation of the rapper’s constitutional rights. Carter, he said, wanted to accept responsibility.