Canadian, 24, jailed 8 years in plot to sneak cocaine into Oz

Convicted cocaine smuggler Melina Roberge dreamed of Instagram likes in exotic locations

A female judge in Australia has sentenced cruise ship cocaine importer Melina Roberge to eight years in prison.

The pair and a third French Canadian drug plotter, Andre Tamine, were arrested in August 2016 when MS Sea Princess berthed in Sydney and Australian Border Force officials raided their cabins.

Roberge pleaded guilty in February to importing a commercial quantity of a border controlled substance, and in swapping fashionable clothes for prison rags, has earned the job of "sweeper" while in jail.

In a statement to the court, Roberge admitted she was a "stupid young woman who was governed by a superficial desire to take pictures of myself in exotic locations and post them on Instagram to receive likes and attention". She said she took part in the scheme to gain more Instagram followers and to promote the glamorous lifestyle she portrays on her social media account. The money was a bonus compared to the opportunity to present herself as a rich jet-setter, traveling the world with seemingly endless amounts of money to spend on fancy clothes, food, and vacations.

A Canadian woman has been jailed for at least four years and nine months after she was caught with up to $21 million dollars worth of cocaine, in a crime partially committed for likes on Instagram. The chance to travel the globe, with endless photo ops in each luxurious destination, was too good to pass up.

New South Wales District Court Judge Kate Traill blasted Roberge for seeking to show off online.

She included, "This highlights the unfavorable impact of social networks on girls".

"It is sad they seek to attain such a vacuous existence, where how many "likes" they receive is their currency".

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"She wanted to be the envy of others".

Melina Roberge, 24, broke down in tears Wednesday when the Sydney court handed down the sentence, which includes a non-parole period of 4 years and 9 months in prison.

Judge Traill, who also accepted that Roberge's motivation to do the drug run was financial, revealed that the offender had been sexually involved with the "sugar daddy" who recruited her.

Police with sniffer dogs found 77 pounds of cocaine in the cabin belonging to Roberge and Isabelle Lagace, who was sentenced to 7-1/2 years in prison in November.

The much older man convinced Roberge to work as an escort, and she slept with men he introduced to her, essentially working as her pimp.

Two women, believed to be Roberge's friends, also arrived at court today to support the 24-year-old.

Roberge said she apologized to people who were struggling with addiction.

"Traveling is one thing", she wrote in one post.

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