Roger and Susan Clarke, aged 72 and 71 respectively, were arrested on December 4, 2018, in Santa Apolónia, Lisbon.

The couple in their 70’s were arrested by Portuguese police just moments after their cruise ship docked in Lisbon, after suitcases stuffed with around €2 million worth of cocaine were found in their cabin.

PJ police, in collaboration with the Maritime Police, made the arrests on Tuesday 4 December 2018, after the ship, the Marco Polo, operated by Cruise & Maritime Voyages, docked in the Portuguese capital.

A statement from the PJ police said the couple, aged 70 and 72, were arrested due to “strong suspicion of the crime of international drug trafficking”.

The PJ explained the action was the result of a “permanent exchange of information and cooperation” between itself and the competent UK authorities, namely the National Crime Agency.

“The arrests took place moments after the vessel docked at the Lisbon Cruise Terminal and following a search of the cabin that was occupied by the suspects, where four suitcases were located, in which a large amount of product, more specifically cocaine, was ingeniously concealed”.

The force said they found 9-10kg of the class A drug, believed to have a street value of around €2 million, hidden in the four suitcases, which were seized.

The vessel had departed London Tilbury (UK) on 5 November to cruise the West Indies and the Azores, with 610 passengers and 294 crew on board.