Royal Caribbean Waiter Guilty Of Smuggling Drugs On Ship
January 21, 2011 Leave a comment
Bermuda‘s Royal Gazette is reporting that a crew member on Royal Caribbean‘s Explorer of the Seas accused of leading a drug smuggling operation on the ship has been found guilty in a Bermuda court.
The Gazette says Bermuda’s Supreme Court found Ricardo Stewart, a 32-year-old waiter on the vessel who is a native of Jamaica, guilty of conspiring to import more than $424,000 worth of cocaine onto the island.
The drugs were found hidden under a chair in the ship’s disco, according to the news outlet.
Stewart allegedly was the mastermind of a complex operation to smuggle drugs on the ship that involved other crew members and passengers, the Gazette says. Another crew member, Adrian Morris, already has pleaded guilty to a role in the smuggling operation and fingered Stewart as the ringleader.
The news outlet says that, according to Kelnile Bushay, another Explorer of the Seas crew member arrested during an investigation into the operation, passengers would take the cocaine on and off the ship, with crew members hiding the drugs around the vessel while it was at sea.
Bushay testified that Stewart was the connection between the passengers and crew, the Gazette says.
The conviction comes just days after U.S. Custom and Border Protection agents found nearly $100,000 worth of heroin and cocaine aboard another Royal Caribbean ship, Enchantment of the Seas, after it docked in Baltimore. That discovery, in turn, came less than a month after customs agents allegedly discovered heroin and cocaine in the possession of an Enchantment crew member after getting a tip from a ship’s security officer.