Pubdate: Fri, 4 Jul 2003
Source: Royal Gazette, The (Bermuda)
Copyright: 2003 The Royal Gazette Ltd.
Author: Richard Ferris
Bookmark: (Bermuda)


Dear Sir,

As a potential cruise ship passenger to Bermuda I read your paper's
articles about arresting Americans on cruise ships for small amounts
of marijuana.

Sounds like a two-bit shakedown to me. It's just a way to make money
off American tourists plain and simple. If Bermuda was as serious
about drug importation as the judge in the cases claimed in all his
pithy remarks during the trials then why is the fine $1,000 regardless
of whether you import marijuana or cocaine or "magic mushrooms" as the
articles say?

Seems like if you were so serious about it then you would jail people
bringing in hard drugs but the fine is the same whether you bring in
cocaine, hallucinogens or a gram of marijuana.

Maybe people should start taking you up on the 90 days in jail instead
and fill your jails and cost you money instead of making it, and this
would end quickly I bet. It is like a cottage industry for you.

And not only that, all the trials are conducted before the ship
leaves. Why don't they just have the trials right on the ship and save
people the inconvenience of going to the courthouse?

If you were so serious about drug importation then maybe you should
make it a little less convenient?

But, no, you would not want the people to miss the ship because then
they would have to stay in Bermuda and then what would you do with
them? That would gum up the works as you would have all these people
hanging around and that might interfere in your processing the next
ship to come in.

The Police come right into your rented room with dogs and go through
all your stuff without any suspicion that you are doing anything
wrong. I don't use drugs but I certainly don't want the police in my
room going through all my things on no suspicion of criminal activity.

Can't imagine that I would ever go to Bermuda now and I had been
thinking about taking this cruise before.

I doubt what you gain by your "law enforcement" makes up for what you
will lose by people not coming to Bermuda and not spending money
because they refuse to have their civil liberties violated. I think
many people would have the same reaction when they find out about this.

You hear about scams like this going on in some "banana

Guess that's all Bermuda is too.


Richmond, Virginia
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