The two British pensioners arrested on suspicion of smuggling £2 million ($2.5 Million USD) of cocaine into Europe on board a cruise ship have been named as husband and wife Roger and Susan Clarke.
The pair, who live on the coastal region of Spain on the Costa Del Sol, were arrested when their cruise ship, the Marco Polo, docked at the port of Lisbon on December 4 and police allegedly found nine kilograms (19 lb) of the Class A drug in their luggage.
Mr. Clarke is understood to have told fellow passengers he had bought the four suitcases during a visit to the island of St Lucia in the Caribbean.
Mrs Clarke, is a mother of three and divorced from her first husband, John Sheathers, an actor. She used to work as a secretary in the aviation industry.
The couple were both arrested following a tip-off from the UK’s National Crime Agency, although it is not clear whether the drugs were bound for the UK or mainland Europe.
Vitor Ananais, who led the operation for Portugal’s Policia Judiciaria, said: “We knew who were looking for and boarded the cruise ship with a search warrant.”
“We do not know for sure at the moment where the cocaine was going to be brought ashore,” he added.
“We believe the couple were given the drugs in a Caribbean island but are still looking into which island at this stage.
‘It is understood this was in connection with the suspected smuggling and possession of narcotics. Cruise & Maritime Voyages is co-operating fully with the Portuguese police officials.
Most of the officers that boarded the ship are understood to have been plain-clothes officers.