By: Richard L. Smith
A Wallington resident charged following his attempt to bring firearms, ammunition, a bulletproof vest, fraudulent law enforcement credentials, and other items on a domestic flight to Fort Lauderdale, Florida, U.S. Attorney Philip Sellinger announced today.
Federal officials said Seretse Clouden, 42, is charged by complaint with unlawful possession of firearms and ammunition by a convicted felon and fraudulent possession of an identification document and authentication feature of the United States.
Official said Clouden made his initial court appearance today before the U.S. Magistrate Judge James B. Clarke III in Newark federal court and was detained.
According to the documents filed in this case and statements made in court:
On Dec. 30, 2022, Clouden entered Newark Liberty International Airport for a scheduled flight to Fort Lauderdale. During the routine screening of checks destined for Fort Lauderdale, Transportation Security Administration agents discovered two .40 Glock magazines, each containing 15 rounds of .40 caliber ammunition, and a ballistic vest carrier that displayed the words “Deputy Marshal.”
Further investigation revealed that the checked luggage belonged to Clouden, which resulted in additional screening of Clouden’s other baggage, which contained an ASP expandable baton, a spring-loaded knife, a taser, a .40 caliber Glock 22 handgun, a .308 caliber DPMS Panther Arms rifle, and one 5.56 caliber AR-15 rifle, which meets the definition of a machine gun.
That luggage also contained “United States Marshal” credentials, bearing Clouden’s name and photograph, and a “United States Marshal” badge.
An inquiry with the United States Marshals Service confirmed that Clouden is not, and was not, employed with the United States Marshal Service.
The count of unlawful possession of firearms and ammunition by a convicted felon carries a maximum potential penalty of 15 years in prison.
The count of fraudulent possession of an identification document and authentication feature of the United States carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.