Bill Russell

ARRESTED

For Packin' Heat at Airport

10/19/2013 12:43 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
breaking news

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Legendary NBA player Bill Russell was arrested for taking a loaded gun through airport security.

The 11-time NBA champ was breezing through security at Sea-Tac International Airport in Seattle Wednesday ... when a screener noticed something funny in his carry-on.  Turns out ... Bill was packin' a fully loaded, .38 caliber Smith & Wesson handgun.

He could be fined up to $7,500.

Russell -- who became the first Black coach in the NBA -- got the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2011, courtesy of Barack Obama.

 We reached out to Russell for comment ... so far, no word back.

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