A cruise ship vacation is the kind of trip that most people highly anticipate, and assume they will be able to think fondly of for months after it has ended. This assumption makes sense, as most passengers enjoy the excitement and relaxation of a cruise vacation without any problem before, during, or after their trip.
However, this vision of the cruise world as carefree and immune to the adversity of daily life is misleading. After all, wherever there are people, there is the potential for accident and injury to occur-even on a cruise ship.
Two of the most common cruise ship crimes reported are rape and sexual assault. Although it can be difficult to come forward and report such an event after it has taken place, we can confidently say that it is always the best choice to do so.
By reporting your attack, you can begin to seek the justice you deserve, while also preventing others from falling victim in the same way. During this process, a trusted cruise ship rape lawyer can help you navigate the complex legal issues, so that you can focus on your emotional and physical recovery.
A recent story out of Miami, reminds us of the reality of the cruise line rape situation.
This week, a 46-year-old woman, who is a British resident of North Carolina and has chosen to remain anonymous, is suing the Miami-based SeaDream Yacht Club, for being “violently” raped by Rui Manuel Duarte Guerreiro, a Portuguese bartender on a cruise of the Adriatic Sea in June 2015.
The woman was a frequent traveler with the Yacht Club and says she and Guerreiro had met several times before the attack. On the night of the event, she explains she had taken her normal sleeping pill, as well as a seasickness pill due to rough seas before arriving at the piano bar where Guerreiro was working.
According to her reports, her mind became “fuzzy” and when she and Guerreiro were left alone, he dragged her behind the bar and raped her vaginally, anally and orally.
Although she contacted the ship’s doctor after the incident, there was no rape kit on board. As a result, she was examined at an Italian hospital when the ship made its next stop. Despite asking to see the captain, she explains that he never responded, and when she was forced to leave her cabin at the end of the trip so that the crew could begin preparing for the next passengers, the only “safe” place for her to wait was at the scene of the crime.
Attorney Winkleman to Handle this Case
We are proud that our own Michael Winkleman is handling this case. In a conversation with the Daily Mail, Mr. Winkleman explains that his client had no choice but to sue, as “the incident happened in international waters and the alleged rapist is a foreign national.”
He went on to describe sexual assaults on cruise ships as having reached ‘epidemic levels,’ possibly in part due to the recent change in reporting requirements. We are confident in Attorney Winkleman’s ability to help his client achieve the justice that she deserves, so that she can return to living her life, and put this traumatizing event behind her.
The unfortunate reality is that these kinds of attacks take place far more often than anyone would like. Our team has handled a variety of rape and sexual assault cases, and we are prepared to help, if you or someone you love has suffered a similar fate aboard your cruise.
When trust your case with our attorneys, you can rest assured that we will give you and your unique situation the utmost respect and integrity. So if you have questions and are ready to take the next step, do not hesitate to contact us.