SYDNEY – Two Canadian women who documented a lavish cruise trip to Australia on Instagram could face life in prison after police say they seized 95 kilograms of cocaine from their ship docked in Sydney Harbour.
Melina Roberge, 23, and Isabelle Lagacé, 28 — as well as a third Canadian, 63-year-old Andre Tamine, who could also face a life sentence — were refused bail this week, a source close to the case told CNN.
The three have been charged with importing drugs of a commercial volume into the country, Australian Federal Police said in a statement.
The haul reportedly has a street value of around AUD$30 million ($23 million), and police told CNN affiliate Channel 7 that the seizure was Australia’s biggest-ever drug bust through a “passenger stream.”
The police statement said that Australian Border Force officers boarded the vessel over the weekend when it berthed in Sydney Harbour. Authorities used sniffer dogs to search a number of passenger cabins on the ship. Around 95 kilograms of cocaine was found packed in suitcases, it said. On Facebook, the agency joked that the three “did not have much room for clean underwear or spare toothbrushes.”
The women appear to have traveled to Bermuda, Chile, Ecuador and Colombia, before boarding the vessel for Australia. CNN was not able to immediately contact the Canadian nationals or their lawyer.