An Oceania crew member was arrested at Port of Miami for smuggling cocaine (intentionally importing a controlled substance) when the Riviera called at port in Miami on January 2, 2019.
The Miami Herald reports and a review of the Homeland Security officer’s affidavit reveals) that Wilford Thobourne exited the Oceania cruise ship via the crew gangway was arrested for smuggling three and a three-quarter pounds of cocaine which he concealed in the soles of his sandals and in his crotch under five pair of shorts and underwear in his pants.
A copy of the affidavit in support of the criminal complaint against Mr. Thouborne is here.
Mr. Thobourne’s Facebook page indicates that he is from Johannesburg, South Africa.*
Coincidentally, four South African women working for MSC Cruises were allegedly recruited by a Jamaican crew member to smuggle cocaine into the port of Miami aboard the MSC Seaside at the end of November. United States Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers arrested seven MSC crew members including the four South African women for smuggling cocaine in that incident. (There is no indication at this time of a connection in this case between the South African Oceania and MSC crew members.)
The Herald indicated that Mr. Thobourne is scheduled for arraignment in federal court in ten days.
The Riviera has been in the news recently when it was revealed that Giuliano De Cicco, age 38, who was working as Assistant Destination Manager on the Riviera, died on January 2, 2019. The popular Crew Center site reported that he died when he fell from the Riviera cruise ship to the pier at the port of Miami on January 2nd.
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*/ Although his Facebook page indicates that he is from Johannesburg, (Gauteng Province) in South Africa, several crew members state that Mr. Thobourne is from Jamaica.
Photo credit: Wilford Thobourne Facebook page.