The Bermuda Sun reports today that a Princess Cruises crew member has been arrested for what is described as a "sex attack" on a woman on a cruise ship. The newspaper identifies Filipino Johnwill Reyes Abdon, age 40, as the crew member who allegedly committed the crime. The incident occurred on the Caribbean Princess, a Bermuda-registered vessel, on December 28, 2010. The article does not mention whether the victim was a cruise passenger or another crew member. Sexual assaults on cruise ships are not rare, as the cruise industry leads the public to believe. We have attended five Congressional hearings since 2005 where Congress was provided with evidence of literally hundreds of incidents of sexual assaults on cruises. Cruise expert Professor Ross Klein studied cruise crime statistics provided to the U.S. Congress and concluded that passengers run nearly twice the risk of being sexually assaulted aboard a ship than they do on land. We have written about rapes on Princess Cruises before in articles: Unsafe on the "Love Boat?" – Sexual Assaults on Princess Cruise Ships and Princess Cruises Sexual Assault Trial Begins. The unusual thing about this latest incident is that the police in Bermuda (where the ship is flagged) actually traveled to South Florida and arrested crew member Abdon, and then flew him to Bermuda to face the charges. Getting the local police from the flag state to arrest crew members on cruise ships around the world is extremely rare. The trial will begin on March 7, 2011.
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