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Can Cruise Lines be Held Accountable for Crimes Aboard Their Ships?


People go on cruises to rest and relax, and that is just what many get to do aboard the ships. However, every once in a while, a passenger will report a crime that was committed against them. From theft to assault, cruise lines have been under fire lately for heinous acts that leave passengers injured and feeling violated. The Miami personal injury attorneys at The Pendas Law Firm fight on behalf of these victims of cruise line assault to ensure that they are not only compensated for their injuries, but also, to make sure that the offending parties are held accountable.

South Florida Woman Sues Cruise Line for Alleged Rape

Just recently a South Florida woman filed a $25 million lawsuit against SeaDream Yacht Club and a bartender for what was, by her account, a lengthy and violent rape. The 46-year -old woman claims to have been a frequent passenger aboard SeaDream’s cruise ship, but after the 2015 assault, has not been back. She just now got up the nerve to tell her story and file a lawsuit.

According to the woman, she was held against her will behind a bar on the ship by bartender Rui Manuel Duarte Guerreiro. She says that he was sure to close all windows and doors before raping her vaginally, orally, and anally. The assault lasted for an extended period of time, during which the woman claims to have repeatedly asked Duarte Guerreiro to stop.

As a result of the rape, the victim suffered extensive physical injuries and ongoing mental injuries that have drastically changed her life.

The Industry Needs Stricter Regulations

Unfortunately, claims like this arise all the time against cruise lines, indicating that the ships are not the safe haven people imagine and that regulations do need to be revisited.

Under current law, cruise lines are not required to report even the most serious injuries that occur in international waters. Additionally, most cruise ships are registered under  a foreign entity, which means that America has no jurisdiction. This combination puts passengers at serious risk, as cruise line employees know that they can get away with just about anything.

Congress is currently talking about revising cruise line regulations to include provisions that require cruise ships to keep logs of all deaths, injuries, missing persons, rapes and sexual assault, thefts, and harassment. Those laws would be subject to the scrutiny of the FBI and Coast Guard.

A Miami Personal Injury Attorney Will Defend Your Rights

Though prosecuting a cruise line employee is a difficult undertaking, it is not impossible. If you or a loved one was injured or sexually assaulted on a cruise line by a cruise line employee, you deserve to have your story heard and to be compensated for your damages. Reach out to The Pendas Law Firm at 1-888-LPENDAS to speak with a Miami personal injury attorney regarding your case.

The Pendas Law Firm also represents clients in the Jacksonville, Orlando, West Palm Beach, Fort Myers, Fort Lauderdale, Daytona, Bradenton, and Tampa areas.


Read What Others Have To Say About Us

  • “I'm very happy with this firm... Joel is an excellent attorney and Carolyn is an amazing paralegal, After been ditched from another law firm, Pendas took care of me and they won my case. I recommend them 100%...” - Jacksonville, Florida (11/2013) -

    Maria Pastor
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