Sexual Assault or Rape by Crew Members

If you are a cruise ship passenger or crew member and were the victim of a rape or sexual assault you need special help. Our law firm specializes in cruise ship crime and represented numerous cruise ship crime victims both passenger s and crew. A cruise ship passenger has every right to expect a great vacation. You likely made sacrifices to afford the trip. The planning and packing for a cruise can be hectic and exhausting. But when you board the ship, many passengers don’t realize that they are giving up various legal rights and protections enjoyed on land. Before embarkation, many passengers have their hopes and expectations are high. Unfortunately, too many passengers let their guard down. Sometimes, passengers get hurt by the people they least expect - a crew member of the cruise ship.

One of the most insidious harms that crew member can inflict upon a passenger is a sexual assault or rape. In addition to the physical harm, there is also a violation of trust by the cruise line. Passengers like to believe that they have entrusted themselves and their families to the care of the cruise ship staff and crew. Passengers trust them to provide a great experience and a safe voyage on a cruise ship.

Cruise Ship Crime is a Growing Problem

Over the years, cruise ship crime like rape and sexual assault have risen. Cruise lines are required to report the number of cruise ship related crimes and serious offenses outlined by federal statute. Our law firm has litigated many cases of cruise ship crime against all of the major cruise lines. Our firm has also been involved in passing tougher safety and security measures on ships. Under Federal law, cruise line operators are required to provide passengers and crew members

Unfortunately, all too often crew members commit sexually violent crimes against passengers. The victims can be minors, teenagers, young adults, parents and grandparents. The reality of sexual assault or rape by crew members is directly at odds with the reputation and image portrayed by the cruise ship industry. But as the best cruise ship rape lawyers will advise, crew member sexual assaults and rapes are the number one crime you and your family are likely to experience.

Who is a Crew Member?

Crew members on a cruise ship are not just limited to the captain and the attendants who take care of you. You may not realize just how many departments and employees it takes to run a cruise ship.

The personal care and medical departments might include:

  • Salon/Spa/Fitness Attendants
  • Manicurist
  • Beauty Therapist
  • Fitness Instructor
  • Nurses
  • Hair Stylist
  • Massage Therapists
  • Spa Attendant
  • Physicians

The food and beverage staff:

  • Dining Room Manager
  • Bar Manager
  • Baker
  • Bar Back
  • Bartender
  • Butcher
  • Pastry Chef
  • Sous Chef
  • Chef
  • Buffet Server
  • Wine Steward
  • Cocktail Server
  • Dining Room Head Waiter
  • Busboys
  • Executive Chef
  • Food and Beverages Manager
  • General Cook
  • Maître d' Hotel

The purser and housekeeping staff such as:

  • Chief Steward/Housekeeper
  • Chief Purser
  • Laundry Staff
  • Purser Staff
  • Cabin Steward
  • Chief Cabin Steward

The hotel administration staff who you might encounter:

  • Hotel Manager
  • IT Staff
  • Accountant
  • Bellman
  • Gift Shop Sales Assistant
  • Receptionist
  • Computer Systems Manager/IT
  • Program Coordinator
  • Gift Shop Manager

In the engineering and deck departments, you would find:

  • Able Seaman
  • Bosun
  • Captain
  • Carpenter
  • Chief Officer
  • First Officer
  • Quarter Master
  • Safety Officer
  • Security Officer
  • Staff Captain
  • Assistant Engineer
  • Chief Engineer
  • Chief Electrician
  • Chief Radio Officer
  • First Assistant Engineer
  • Motorman
  • Oiler
  • Plumber

The entertainment and activity departments have the following employees:

  • Disc Jockey
  • Casino staff
  • Assistant Cruise Director
  • Art Auctioneer
  • Cruise Consultant
  • Youth Counselors
  • Cruise Director
  • Assistant Shore Excursions Manager
  • Dive Instructor
  • Naturalist
  • Photographer
  • Audio Visual Coordinator
  • Dance Instructor
  • Sound and Light Technician
  • Port Lecturer
  • Production Manager
  • Gentlemen Host
  • Disc Jockey
  • Lecturer/Special Guest Speaker
  • Entertainers
  • Shore Excursions Manager
  • Social Host/Hostess

The important thing to remember is that the cruise line is most likely to be responsible for any accidental or intentional acts that result in injury and damages to any passenger.

Cruise Ship Crime Victims – Who is Responsible?

Generally, the cruise ship company is strictly liable for the actions and conduct of its employees and crew. This includes cruise ship rapes and cruise ship sexual assaults. Strictly liable is a legal term that means the victim does not need to prove intent, negligence or motive. The victim, through his or her cruise ship rape lawyer, need only prove that the incident happened and demonstrate the damages caused by that action, conduct or behavior.

Just because a cruise line is strictly liable for crew member rapes and sexual assaults doesn’t mean the cruise line will not defend against these claims. Our cruise ship rape lawyers at Gerson and Schwartz in Miami are well aware of the typical defense strategies of cruise lines. We have the experience and resources to fight these cruise lines and their lawyers.

Don’t think for a minute that the cruise ship company is doing anything to solve the problem of crew member sexual assaults and rapes. These multibillion-dollar corporations only react when it affects their bottom line. They count on a majority of these cruise ship assaults going unreported.

As for the cruise ship rapes by crew members, the cruise line typically follows a standard pattern of defense:

  1. It didn’t happen;
  2. It happened but it was consensual;
  3. It was the passenger’s fault;
  4. Something happened, but it was someone other than our crew member;
  5. If all else fails, then they argue you really weren’t harmed or damaged
  6. The passenger was drunk or intoxicated

It is difficult to tell victims of cruise ship crime victims to expect these defenses and claims. But it is our job as advocates for cruise ship rape victims to prepare each client for the tough, long road ahead. Ultimately, we can help you get the justice and compensation you deserve so long as you understand that the cruise lines will defend these crimes at sea vigorously.

If you or a loved one were sexually assaulted, raped, groped, molested or any form of sexual violence, the cruise ship rape lawyers at Gerson and Schwartz are here for you. We have more than 80 years of experience in dealing with the defenses put forth by cruise ship companies. Call us today for your confidential and free consultation at (877) 475-2905.

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