Woman Banned For Life From Carnival Cruise For Allegedly Trying To Bring CBD Gummies Onboard

Not from the story. (FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP via Getty Images)

Mariane Angela Contributor
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A frequent cruiser from Texas has been banned for life from all Carnival cruise ships, according to a local report.

PortMiami security stopped Melinda Van Veldhuizen in August for allegedly having CBD gummies in her backpack, Local10 reported Tuesday. Van Veldhuizen had priority boarding due to her extensive cruising history, per the outlet. (RELATED: REPORT: Dan Bilzerian’s CBD Company Ignite Lost $50 Million In 2019)

“I have trouble sleeping, so it was just to make sure I could sleep on the trip — so if there were any issues, I could sleep,” Van Veldhuizen said, according to Local10. “I’ve always traveled with them, no problem.”

CBD is not illegal in Florida and the gummies contained less than 0.01% THC (the psychoactive component in marijuana), Local10 reported. Despite CBD’s legal status in many states and under federal law (with THC content below 0.3%), major cruise lines, including Carnival, prohibit its possession.

Authorities allegedly interrogated Van Veldhuizen and she was not allowed to board, Local10 reported. Her family chose not to cruise without her. She later received a letter from Carnival stating her lifetime ban, according to the outlet.

“We are very sorry this guest and her family are unhappy with the outcome of their vacation plans, but we are following federal law under which CBD is defined as a controlled substance,” a Carnival spokesperson said in a statement cited by Local10. “We are not here to ascertain where our guests purchase CBD or what they intend to use it for once on board. Our responsibility is to follow federal guidelines and stop prohibited items from being brought on board our ships.”

Van Veldhuizen’s attorney, Daren Stabinski, argued CBD is not the same as marijuana and what Van Veldhuizen had was not illegal. The incident resulted in Van Veldhuizen losing $10,000, according to Local 10.