SYDNEY (Reuters) - Australian customs officers seized a record 95kg of cocaine from a cruise ship docked in Sydney Harbour following a joint operation at the weekend that led to the arrest of three Canadians, they said on Monday (Aug 29).
It was the biggest drug seizure at an airport or a cruise ship in Australia, said Mr Tim Fitzgerald, a regional commander at the Australian Border Force.
Customs officers boarded the vessel and searched cabins with the help of sniffer dogs, they said in a statement. "It was during the search of the cabin... that we identified a number of suitcases in the cabin itself that were locked. Itemiser or trace technology was used to scan the outside of those suitcases and as a result a number of tests came positive for the presence of cocaine," Mr Fitzgerald said.
The Canadians were charged with importing a commercial quantity of cocaine, for which the maximum penalty is life imprisonment.