A Canadian woman who smuggled over 30 kilograms of cocaine into Australia while on vacation was sentenced to eight years in prison Wednesday.
Mélina Roberge, 24, was one of three Canadians involved in smuggling 95 kilograms of cocaine in 2016, which police say was worth up to $21 million on the streets in Australia.
She will be eligible for parole by May 2021.
Roberge and her travel companion, 30-year-old Isabelle Lagacé, first made headlines after posting photos of a cruise ship vacation on social media.
Their “vacation” would include the women posing as travellers on a seniors’ cruise called the Sea Princess that made stops in Canada, the US, South America, and New Zealand.
According to the Sydney Morning Herald, New South Wales District Court judge Kate Traill sentenced Roberge saying, “the young woman was not only motivated by money but by the proposition of posting Instagram photos of herself in exotic locations.”
“She wanted to be the envy of others. I doubt she is now.”
Roberge told the court that she was offered the trip from her Montreal “sugar daddy.”
When the cruise ship docked in Sydney, Australia, on August 28, 2016, Roberge, Lagacé and André Tamine, a 65-year-old Montreal man, were all arrested.
Sniffer dogs found 30 kilograms of cocaine in the women’s cabin and 65 kilograms in Tamine’s cabin. All three Canadians pleaded guilty.
Lagacé was sentenced last November to seven years and six months in prison. She will be eligible for parole by February 2021.
Tamine is still waiting to be sentenced.
This was reported as the largest Australian drug bust to ever take place on a cruise ship.