T.I. “Faces Serious Federal Charges” For Arming Himself To The Teeth

tivstip.jpgAs noted with no small irony by just about every news agency, rapper T.I. won a B.E.T. Award (for Best Hip-Hop Artist) in absentia this weekend. The King of the South was unable to attend the show because he was nabbed by the feds on Saturday afternoon in Atlanta for “delivery of three machine guns and two silencers,” perhaps assuming authorities wouldn’t notice a Grammy winner, Billboard chart topper, and ex-con taking an interest in arms dealing.

Agents snagged one of T.I.’s bodyguards purchasing the weapons; he then claimed that the only reason he went out shopping that day was because his boss asked him to pick some up automatic firearms on the way home. Yet T.I. knows quite well that he’s unable to purchase, or have his flunkies purchase, guns for himself thanks to his criminal record. Especially unregistered automatic weapons and illegal silencers. And unike your typical celeb arrest for posession or even a concealed weapon, T.I. “faces serious federal charges and a potentially long prison sentence,” according to authorities. (Take a cursory look at the 2007 federal sentencing guidelines armed with a middle school understanding of the legal system, and it’s easy to see that, yeah, dude’s kinda fucked if this sticks.)

The shady history of the hip-hop cops and their (even shadier) attempts to pin bullshit charges on high-profile hip-hop artists means that any case like this should be looked at with a slightly jaundiced eye, at least until more facts come to light. But what is it with wealthy men thinking they need to turn their billion-dollar cribs into survivalist compounds, complete with quasi-legal armories? That’s why you have bodyguards, isn’t it?

U.S. Agents Arrest T.I. On Gun Charges [Reuters]

Tags: T.I.