Cruising for a Bruising

By Kirwan Gray 05/03/11

Think you're safe partying on the high seas? Think again. A surprise raid on the largest gay cruise in history results in a number of drug-related arrests.

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Abandon Ship! A drug raid on Royal Carribean.
Photo via thinkstockphotos

Passengers ponied up a few grand to attend the largest gay and lesbian event ever held on an oceangoing vessel, the Royal Caribbean’s Allure of the Seas, a 5,400-passenger luxury ship that happens to be one of the largest cruise ships in the world. The outing, which attracted thousands of prominent businessmen, lawyers and producers, was quickly sold-out. But one of the most popular people onboard was the seemingly unremarkable Barry Krumholtz, a 51-year old drug dealer from West Hollywood. Krumholtz was taking orders for meth, ecstasy, and Special K when federal agents took him down during a raid, as the ship made a stop in the U.S. Virgin Islands. Officials crashed into Krumholtz’s cabin after another passenger who was caught with drugs gave up the dealer in a heartbeat. As the Associated Press reported: “Agents searched Krumholz’s cabin and allegedly found more than 142 ecstasy pills, nearly 3 grams of methamphetamine, a small quantity of ketamine and about $51,000 in cash. While waiting for the suspect to return to his cabin, two more passengers came to buy drugs, according to the affidavit. Krumholz was detained on charges of possession with intent to sell.”

Royal Caribbean spokesman Cynthia Martinez said that the cruise line “maintains a strict zero tolerance policy regarding illegal drugs on its ships. We take various steps to prevent the transport of illegal narcotics, including working closely with U.S. Customs and Border Protection. We cooperated fully with authorities during this investigation and will continue to provide law enforcement with any assistance they may need.” That just might be worth remembering the next time you ventured seaward on a boat with its own cops. A Customs and Border Protection official told AOL Travel News that the incident, the latest in a series of high profile raids at sea, reflected “an increase in contraband finds” by police due to increased cruise travel. Fort Lauderdale, one of the largest cruise ports in the world, saw traffic jump 17% in the last fiscal year. Customs officials employ “dogs, technology and man-power” to track down drugs aboard cruise ship, a spokesperson said.

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