FORT MYERS, Fla. – Authorities say an airline pilot was arrested at a Florida airport after a loaded gun was found in his carry-on suitcase.

Brian Andrew Machtemes of Minnetonka, Minn., was arrested Friday at Southwest Florida International Airport, reported News-Press.

A Lee County Port Authority arrest report says the 54-year-old Sun Country Airlines pilot was arrested when a Transportation Security Administration agent found a loaded handgun in his suitcase.

Moreover, the report says Machtemes has a permit to carry the gun in Minnesota, but that it wasn’t valid in Florida.

airline pilot

Brian Andrew Machtemes of Minnetonka, Minn., was arrested Friday at Southwest Florida International Airport. (Lee County Sheriff’s Office)

According to TSA regulations, they allow unloaded firearms in locked containers only as checked baggage.

Airline spokeswoman Kirsten Wenker confirmed Machtemes is a pilot. Nevertheless, she declined further comment, citing privacy reasons.

Santa Monica

(Flicker)

Machtemes was released on $5,000 bond. Jail records didn’t show whether he had an attorney.

These circumstances remind us of the debate whether qualified airline pilots should be armed. What are your thoughts?