'Holy Ship' passengers arrested before boarding, charged with drug possession

They were ready to set sail for a party til the break of dawn, but the Brevard County Sheriff's Office says they were breaking the law.

Twenty people were arrested on Saturday as they were boarding the Norwegian cruise ship Epic, for an annual music festival.  The event is called Holy Ship and is designed for fans of electronic dance music.

The organizers bring in multiple stages for djs and performers, for four days of fist pumping and bass.  According to the Sheriff's Office, 16 people were caught trying to bring drugs on board.

Last year, when Holy Ship was about to depart, deputies arrested two dozen passengers. They were charged for possession of marijuana, cocaine, and drug paraphernalia. The company that organizes the party cruise is called Beats at Sea. FOX 35 contacted them today with some questions, but no answer was returned before publication of this article.

FOX 35 also contacted Norwegian, asking why they haven't told Beats at Sea to beat it.

“We have a zero tolerance policy when it comes to prohibited items aboard our ships, within our terminals, or at our destinations. Along with the organizers of the event, we are cooperating fully with local law enforcement to ensure the welfare of all guests attending the festival. The event has been an incredibly popular and meaningful music experience for thousands over the years, and it is unfortunate that the actions of a select few reflect poorly on such a beloved festival,”  read a statement from a spokesperson for Norwegian Cruise Line.