Gigi Hadid arrested, released for marijuana in Cayman Islands

Gigi Hadid and a friend pleaded guilty to charges of importing marijuana and utensils used for its consumption in the Cayman Islands last week.

The 28-year-old model and her friend Leah McCarthy were fined $1,000 Cayman Islands Dollars after appearing in court on July 12, and no conviction was recorded, according to a statement issued by the Cayman Islands’ Customs & Border Control to USA TODAY on Tuesday.

Additionally, a representative for the Cayman Islands’ Judicial Administration confirmed to USA TODAY that Hadid and McCarthy have paid their fines.

Hadid and McCarthy were arrested on July 10 after they arrived on a private airplane and underwent a luggage search when “a small amount of marijuana was recovered,” according to Customs & Border Control. Two days later, they were sentenced in two offenses: importation of a controlled drug and importation of a drug utensil, according to court documents obtained by USA TODAY.

USA TODAY has reached out to the Owen Roberts International Airport for comment.

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Is it legal to travel to the Cayman Islands with cannabis?

A representative for Hadid told USA TODAY in an emailed statement Tuesday that the model was “traveling with marijuana purchased legally in NYC with a Medical license.”

“It has also been legal for medical use in Grand Cayman since 2017,” Hadid’s rep added. “Her record remains clear and she enjoyed the rest of her time on the island.”

According to a 2019 fact sheet by the National Drug Council of the Cayman Islands, “It is illegal to import or export cannabis in any form across the Cayman border. This applies to all countries, whether it is legal there or not.” This includes products that are prescribed for medical purposes.

But while recreational cannabis use in any form is illegal in the Cayman Islands, cannabis extracts and traces of cannabis can be used for therapeutic and medical purposes when they are prescribed by a licensed doctor there.

Hadid is just the latest notable person to be caught traveling with marijuana.

Last year, WNBA star and two-time Olympic gold medalist Brittney Griner was arrested in a high-profile international incident for allegedly traveling with marijuana paraphernalia. She was taken into custody in Moscow in February 2022 for allegedly trying to bring vape cartridges filled with cannabis oil into Russia; Griner pleaded guilty five months later.

Though a Russian judge sentenced her to nine years in a penal colony, she was released as part of a prisoner exchange 10 months later and returned to the U.S. in December.

Gigi Hadid: ‘All’s well that ends well’ in the Cayman Islands

Hadid took to Instagram Tuesday to share some moments from her vacation with the caption: “All’s well that ends well.”

The supermodel, mother to 2-year-old daughter Khai, whom she shares with ex-boyfriend Zayn Malik, posted other photos during her trip, sharing images in a bikini just a couple of days after her reported court appearance.

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