By Frank James
Rap superstar Lil Wayne is the latest prison-bound celebrity because of an illegally owned firearm.
As part of a plea agreement with prosecutors Lil Wayne, who hails from New Orleans and whose real name is Dwayne Michael Carter Jr., pled guilty Thursday in a Manhattan courtroom to attempted weapon possession. He's likely to get a year in prison.
His plea was related to a gun found on his tour bus in 2007. The Associated Press describes the incident thusly:
Police pulled over Lil Wayne's tour bus in Columbus Circle on July 22, 2007. They said they had seen and smelled marijuana smoke wafting out the door before the bus left a concert venue minutes earlier.
Police said that as an officer approached, the rapper tossed away a Louis Vuitton bag containing a gun.
The defense disputed officers' basis for searching the bus and noted that more than a dozen other people were aboard.
Lil Wayne, 27, is at the top of the charts right now, featured as he is on Jay Sean's "Down" which is currently at the top of Billboard's Hot 100.
Prosecutors and judges tend to be impressed by such things in so far as sending a celebrity to jail tends to get the attention of a lot of would-be wrongdoers.
New York isn't the only state where Lil Wayne is dealing with serious legal trouble. More from the AP:
Lil Wayne, 27, also is scheduled for trial in Arizona on felony drug possession and weapons charges. He has pleaded not guilty in that case, which arose from a January 2008 arrest at a U.S. Border Patrol checkpoint.
Lil Wayne also appeared resigned to take his punishment like a man. Another excerpt:
When the judge warned that he would not be able to withdraw the plea as some people try to do, the rapper said, "I'm not one of those people."
Just a few weeks ago, another celebrity, former NFL star Plaxico Burress surrendered himself to corrections officials to begin serving a two-year prison term for illegally possessing a weapon that discharged in a Manhattan night club, wounding himself in the right thigh.
Earlier this year, Atlanta rapper T.I. (Clifford Joseph Harris, Jr.) was sentenced to a year and a day in prison on federal weapons charges.