Explorer of the Seas - Drug BustThe Royal Gazette newspaper in Bermuda reports today on what has become a routine activity when a U.S. based cruise ships arrives in port – Bermuda Customs officials taking sniffer dogs aboard U.S. based cruise ships and arresting cruise passengers for a small quantity of drugs.

This week Bermuda Customs officers boarded the Royal Caribbean Explorer of the Seas and Carnival Pride cruise ships and conducted random searches of passenger cabins before arresting two passengers from New York.  The big bust? One passenger had just 1.5 grams of pot and 0.7 grams of cocaine.  Can you even get high on 1.5 grams of reefer? 

The other passenger had 13 grams of pot.

One contrite busted passenger told Senior Magistrate Judge Archibald Warner "I didn’t have any intention selling it or smoking it on your Island.” The Magistrate was unimpressed and fined the twp passengers a total of $2,400. 

Busting American passengers for small amounts of drugs is big, big business in Bermuda.  We have written about it time after time.  You can read our articles about the crooked way of Bermuda and minor drug busts below: 

Here We Go Again – Bermuda Shakes Down Another Cruise Ship Pot Head

Bermuda Shakes Down Another Cruise Ship Pot Head

Bermuda Customs, Cruise Ship Cabins & Illegal Searches = Easy U.S. Money $$$

Bermuda Continues Cruise Ship Drug Busts

Are You a Stoner? Don’t Cruise to Bermuda!

Busted in Bermuda – Customs Officials Extort Money From Cruise Passengers By Unconstitutional Drug Searches

Magistrate Warner chastised prosecutors last year for conducting searches of passengers cabins without probable cause or a search warrant. He raised the issue whether cruise ship pot busts are Bermuda Pot - Cruise Shipslegal, "described it as “vexing” and “embarrassing” that tourists are charged for having small quantities of cannabis."

The Magistrate made these comments as he sentenced a 28 year old crewmember from Royal Caribbean’s Explorer of the Seas a 12-month conditional discharge for possessing 5g of pot.

But it looks like Magistrate Warner is now part of the official machinery in Bermuda for processing small time pot heads to increase customs revenues for the island. 

Meanwhile the Captain of the Bermuda-flagged cruise ship, the Star Princess, operated by Bermuda incorporated Princess Cruises, remains free to sail the world notwithstanding sailing by three fishermen 100 miles off the coast of Panama.  The captain’s I-didn’t-know defense stinks.  2 young men are dead and their bodies are missing at sea.

Too bad that Bermuda focuses its limited resources on cruise ship passengers who use small time recreational drugs, rather than on Bermuda incorporated cruise lines which engage in intentional dereliction of duty leading to death of young men on the high seas.


    I love how you are purposefully putting out wrong information. First off those two people who were arrested WERE NOT a couple. One was a 29 year old young woman and another a 62 year old man. Cocaine is not cool and marijuana is not legal. That is the case in the United States as well. If you American’s can’t do it in YOUR OWN COUNTRY what makes you think it’s acceptable here? Should we bend our laws solely for you royal American tourists? If I walked around any city in America and was busted with cocaine and weed I wouldn’t complain and blame all of America as it’s the law. As should be. It doesn’t matter WHERE the cruise ship arrives from so stop acting as if Bermuda is targeting Americans. BY THE WAY why not speak on the United States of America and their “STOP LIST”. Ever heard of it? If a Bermudian is convicted of a “small quantity of drugs” they can NEVER go to visit, they can NEVER go to school there and they can NEVER receive medical attention in the USA if needed. Now is that fair? Is that okay with you? No comment on that?

    Also that ship was registered to Bermuda-that does not mean it was Bermudians who left those men there to die. Even so what does that have to do with the entire island of Bermuda? I mean if we want to go there I don’t even know where to start on the horrendous things Americans have done. This entitled attitude Americans have is why the rest of the world hates you all. You think the world should bow to you and that you can do what you want, where you want and how you want. I’ve never seen SO MANY people from one place so like-minded. It’s scary.

  • My concern with this whole thing (well, I have more than one, but anyway) what if the previous passenger in that cabin was actually the one that had the dope? Do the sniffer dogs have a built-in calendar? Seriously, I am very concerned about that.

    Has this issue arisen previously, where the person claimed it was the previous passenger who actually had the dope?

  • G Harkness:

    Good point. We have been contacted by two passengers who found pot in their room at the beginning of the cruise and turned it in to the cruise ship security. No one would have believed that it was not theirs if the sniffer dos found the pot first.

    Jim Walker

  • To Mr. Get-Your-Facts-Straight:

    Two points:

    1. Your right, it was not a couple. Two passengers from different cruise ships, one Carnival and the other Royal Caribbean.,

    2. Your comments reveal the anti-American bias which undoubtedly permeates your legal system.

  • Toni

    You Americans???? Funny how people flock to this land of freedom for a chance at a REAL life and REAL opportunity. You’re one sad sad individual. Stay in your country where you belong.

  • Gabs

    Toni, “land of freedom”? US is not an oasis in a world of opression. Check where it ranks in quality of life, corruption, gender equality, etc. on the UN page. There are plenty other countries better off.
    By the way, I don’t live in the US, so I assume I’m not living a real life?
    Regarding the ACTUAL subject of this article, I partly agree with the first poster… If you go to another country, you have to abide by their laws. If you were caught with drugs in La Guardia, would you throw a tantrum?

  • My article wasn’t intended to spark a USA versus Bermuda debate.

    It’s about large-corporation-controlled governments versus the people.

    Warrant-less searches, invasion of people’s rights, no probable cause. That’s the way of the communists, Fidel Castro and dictators around the world.

    I don’t smoke reefer, snort drugs or break the law anywhere. But going onto cruise ships with sniffer dogs is bogus. I support the pot heads over the Nazis.

    My article was about hypocrisy. Acting tough and abusing small time toking tourists but lacking moral fiber when flag-of-convenience corporations based in Bermuda kill people.

  • sandi

    BERMUDA IS CORRUPT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Police have control of drugs getting into Bermuda, therefore, they do not want anyone else ruining their already established business. Do a complete investigation on the detectives working drugs and you will find the real importers!. Like the one from Barbados has the whole thing under control. So the drug police are the true drug dealers…That country has people in custody in jail for drug importation to allow them free access without intruders. Its the Narc squad that has dirty hands…..

  • Stir Fry

    Update to Get Your Facts Straight:

    1) Recreational use is legal in Colorado & Washington.

    2) 20 states allow medical use and/or have decriminalized it.

    To those whose feathers were ruffled by the article, the irony is that resources are not put into burglaries, robberies, rapes, murders, and patrols to curtain them and are instead used for revenue generating activities. That’s called a scam where I come from – wolf cruise lines visiting wolf countries and fleecing the tourists instead of protecting them.

  • Stir Fry

    The areas mysteriously absent from the search are crew’s quarters, kitchen, storage, etc.

    Clear harassment of passengers rather than a true and thorough search.

  • Reino

    I know of no one in the u.s that have such a punishment for 1.5 grams of pot it is a petty misdemeanor which usually results in a very small fine similar to a traffic ticket not what appears to be a fine that surely is excessive. I had planned on going to your island but now I will not be going and I don’t even smoke it. So keep it up maybe no one will make the mistake of going to your stinking little island. Not to mention the alcohol laws.