LOS ANGELES (AP) – A teacher pleaded not guilty Thursday to lying on his customs form when he was arrested at Los Angeles International Airport wearing a bulletproof vest and with checked bags containing knives, a smoke grenade and other weapons.
The one-count indictment against Yongda Huang Harris, 28, replaced an original charge of transporting hazardous materials.
If convicted of the new charge of making false statements, Harris could face up to five years in prison.
Authorities said Harris lied on his customs declaration by not stating that he visited Japan and by stating he had only $100 in items purchased abroad.
His attorney Michael Rosenstein declined comment.
Harris was arrested Oct. 5 on a trip from Japan to Boston. He was wearing the bulletproof vest under a trench coat along with fire-resistant pants and kneepads.
His attire attracted the attention of law enforcement, and when his luggage was checked the weapons cache was found, authorities said.
The search also revealed a hatchet, knives, collapsible baton, handcuffs and other items that were permitted to be transported in checked bags.
Prosecutors, however, said the items looked like a kidnap kit. They said at a court hearing last month that Harris had files on his computer detailing how to kidnap and kill people.
The circumstances involving the smoke grenade remained under investigation. Authorities have said it falls into a category of items prohibited on passenger aircraft.
(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
- The Pac-12 football season nears kickoff
- Tips to get ready for a pain-free golf season
- Protect your family with these 7 home security features
- How to train like an Olympic swimmer
- 2016 Olympics: A guide to must-see TV events
- The bride's guide to feeling your best on your wedding day
- Deciding when you need knee surgery
- Celebrating Fourth of July is much cooler in these AZ towns
- Top ten road trip bathrooms in America
- Six things causing a pain in your neck
- 5 things to make your summer move easier
- Three elements of a strong timeshare exit guarantee
- Stretches and exercises for carpal tunnel syndrome
- The best Major League ballparks have their own personality
- Comparing the best regular seasons: The '96 Bulls and '16 Warriors
- 3 Arizona road trips and the vehicles to get you there
- Colon cancer is preventable. Check these signs and symptoms to stay healthy.
- 6 of the biggest skin cancer myths
- Affordable small home makeover ideas
- Locals helping locals: 6 success stories you need to know about
- Sunscreen facts that could save your life
- 6 energy saving hacks for your home
- 5 tips for choosing a company to end your timeshare
- Overlooked water tips to save you money
- 5 of the most adored gentlemen in professional sports today
- The real danger of sitting at your desk
- Most surprising NBA playoff performances of the last 40 years
- 11 classic baseball movies you must see again
- Finally getting rid of fat: 3 methods that actually work
- 4 reasons cancer survivors should focus on food