Kelly Russman, 36
Ciara Alexander, 19
Stacy Goralzik, 28
According to arrest records in Willemstad, Curacao, three women from Pittsburgh were arrested and charged with drug smuggling in Curacao after their cruise ship cabin aboard Norwegian Cruise Line's Norwegian Spirit was found to contain over 20 pounds of cocaine.
Kelly Russman, 36, Ciara Alexander, 19, and Stacy Goralzik, 28, were arrested after authorities found a large quantity of pure cocaine in their cruise ship cabin.
Norwegian Spirit, docked at 0055 hours on Sunday, April 26, 2009 said Curacao police spokesman Reginald Huggins.
Police allege Russman and Alexander were tracked to a local home where they wrapped 16 packages of cocaine around their abdomen, hidden under their clothing, then returned to the ship.
When police boarded the ship, they seized Russman, Alexander and the cocaine and arrested Goralzik.
Pennsylvania arrest records for Kelly Russman show she lived in Wilkinsburg, Pennsylvania when she was convicted in November 2008 of retail theft. She was sentenced to two years probation.
The arrest was the work of a combined force including DEA agents from the U.S. police from Curacao and police from Holland.
After the cruise ship passengers were arrested, agents arrested two Jamaican men identified as having sold the drugs to the American women.
Agents also raided the house in Gamdoret where the women were tracked to and from and they seized another 7.5 kilos of cocaine, 35 guns, other weapons and several cell phones.
Norwegian Spirit embarked on a 12-day cruise Sunday April 19, 2009 out of New Orleans to Boston, Massachusetts on a repositioning "Caribbean Escape" cruise.
The ship stopped at Costa Maya in Mexico, Santo Tomas De Castilla in Guatamala, Belize City in Belize, the Dutch island town of Willemstad in Curaçao, which is located off the coast of the South American nation of Venezuela and Hamilton on the island of Bermuda.
Update: June 6, 2009
Two days after the three women were arrested, all of sudden 17 more people are arrested in Willemstad, Curacao on April 28, telling of a bigger picture began to unfold.
Willemstad is the territorial capital of the Netherlands Antilles.
Though the media kept the arrests on April 26th and April 28 seperate, it was clear they were connected.
The 17 persons arrested were part of a huge cocaine and money-laundering organization with international branches, thought to be responsible for the import and export of at least 2,000 kilos of cocaine per year.
The money from the operations went ultimately to the middle east, to finance Hezbollah terrorist operations.