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Instagram Model Who Helped Smuggle Cocaine Into Australia Lands In jail

A 24 year-old Canadian woman, Melina Roberge, has been sentenced to eight years in prison for helping to smuggled cocaine into Australia on a cruise ship. She is one of the three Canadians who pleaded guilty to the import of 95kg (210lb) of drugs on the MS Sea Princess.

Roberge and her accomplice, Isabelle Lagace, had turned their Instagram accounts into travel diaries, posting glamorous photos and boasting about their intercontinental adventures on the cruise ship that docked in 17 ports in 11 countries before it finally stopped in Australia.

Related imageAustralian police discovered A$21m (£12m; $16m) of cocaine in cabins on the ship in August 2016 after it docked in Sydney following a trip around the world.

Roberge had agreed to pose as a tourist on the trip in exchange for money, a court heard. Her accomplice 29-year-old Isabelle, was jailed in November for seven-and-a-half years. Andre Tamine, 64, is still to face sentencing over his role in the operation.

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Melina Roberge, left, and Isabelle Lagacé were arrested in Australia

“She was seduced by lifestyle and the opportunity to post glamorous Instagram photos from around the world,” Judge Traill said. “She wanted to be the envy of others. I doubt she is now.”

The judge said the case highlighted the negative influence that social media could have on young people. Their instagram accounts disappeared following the arrest.

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