Two NCL passengers arrested for illegal drug trafficking

Jan 26, 2024

Two NCL passengers are facing serious charges after allegedly attempting to smuggle a significant quantity of marijuana aboard the cruise ship Norwegian Joy. Michael Quesenberry and Savannah Rose Minami reportedly brought over 100 bags of marijuana weighing 71.9 kilos, onboard the vessel, which was scheduled to depart from Miami to Southampton, England on January 11th.

According to details from a criminal complaint filed in the Southern District of Florida, authorities initially encountered Quesenberry and Minami together in a passenger cabin. However, Minami claimed she had never met Quesenberry until they crossed paths at a bar onboard the ship. Despite her assertions, law enforcement officers allowed her to remain on board.

Subsequently, a drug-sniffing dog alerted authorities to the presence of 56 vacuum-sealed bags of what was described as "a green, leafy substance" in Quesenberry's luggage. Quesenberry allegedly claimed that the marijuana was for personal use and cited a medical marijuana card from California.

Homeland Security officers were then granted permission to board the ship to search for Minami. They located her at a bar and subsequently searched her luggage, uncovering an additional 56 bags of cannabis. Investigators deemed the packaging and quantity of marijuana consistent with drug trafficking and distribution.

In a statement, officials highlighted the escalating trend of drug traffickers exporting marijuana from the United States to England due to higher prices in the UK. Quesenberry and Minami now face charges including conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute a controlled substance and possession with intent to distribute a controlled substance.

Cruise lines, including Norwegian Cruise Line, strictly prohibit passengers from bringing marijuana on board, even in medicinal form. The company reiterated its commitment to guest safety and security, stating its policy to confiscate prohibited items and notify authorities as necessary.

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