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Virginity for a Keychain? Child Beaten on Cruise Ship at Port Everglades

Written by Spencer Aronfeld on . Posted in Cruise Ship Accidents

Port Everglades is one of the world’s busiest and most successful cruise ship ports. Located just south of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, technically it borders the municipalities of Hollywood, Fort Lauderdale, and Dania Beach, just a short taxi ride from Fort Lauderdale Airport.
When Port Everglades opened in 1928, it was considered an important seaport for South Florida’s then burgeoning agricultural industry. Over the last nearly 100 years, it has evolved into a major commercial container ship and passenger cruise ship port.

Port Everglades processed over 4 million passengers in 2014, which is over 120,000 people a day. Since 2003, Port Everglades has held the record among world ports for most cruise ships docked in a single day, with 15 different cruise ships having docked there one day that year. The Port of Barcelona, Spain, nearly beat it in 2011 when it hosted 9 ships. In third place is the Port of Miami, which is located about 45 minutes south down I-95, when it recorded its record number of passenger ships in 2011 with 8 dockings.
Port Everglades serves as a port for 15 different cruise lines, most notably Royal Caribbean, Celebrity, Carnival, Holland America, and Princess. A few niche super luxury cruise lines also avail themselves of Port Everglades, such as Silversea and Seabourn. With such a heavy volume of passengers, it should come as no surprise that troubling incidents involving those passengers do occur from time to time.

Virginity for a Keychain

It appears that on August 17th just such an incident occurred. According to the Sun Sentinel, a 13-year-old passenger was attacked onboard the RCCL cruise ship Independence of the Seas by a fellow passenger, an Ohio man, who claimed that the child had offered to purchase the virginity of his niece in exchange for a keychain.
The suspect, Arturo Martinez, Jr., 30, of Toledo, Ohio, was arrested by Broward County Sherriff’s as soon as the ship docked at Port Everglades. Martinez also took off his own shirt, the boy said, as if preparing to fight. He then grabbed the boy by the throat and forced the boy face-down onto a couch, investigators said.


Arturo Martinez

The boy has since identified Mr. Martinez from a photographic lineup, and detectives have already viewed the ship’s CCTV surveillance video, which corroborates the victim’s story. Mr. Martinez now faces criminal charges of child abuse without great bodily harm, assault, battery, and false imprisonment of a child. His bond is set at $17,100.
When criminal batteries and sexual attacks befall passengers on cruise ships, it is important not only to preserve the evidence for the criminal prosecution of the attacker, but also to analyze the potential civil liability for the cruise line.

Legal Duty to Protect

Cruise lines like Royal Caribbean have a legal duty to protect their passengers from harm, which includes physical attacks by crew members, other passengers, and third parties.
Not all passenger assaults are preventable or foreseeable. Sadly, many parents let down their guard when on cruise vacations, and allow their children to roam the ships unsupervised, mistakenly believing that cruise ships are safer than everyday life wherever in the world they may be from. In reality, cruise ships are essentially floating international cities, with passengers, crew members, and others from around the world roaming the bars, pools, libraries, and hallways at all hours of the day and night.
I have investigated dozens of passenger assault cases, including many involving minors. Inevitably the injuries occur outside the watchful eye of adult supervision. I have not seen the evidence in this particular incident, but it would be important to know how long the altercation lasted and what RCCL knew, or should have known about it, in order to have foreseen and prevented this tragedy. For instance, it is very important to know how many security personnel the ship had on staff and on duty at the time of this incident.

Consult with an Experienced Cruise Ship Accident Lawyer Today

If you have been injured aboard an RCCL cruise ship or on other cruise line, it is important to consult immediately with an experienced cruise ship assault and battery attorney. Evidence such as the CCTV footage, witness statements, and medical records is crucial in understanding how or if the cruise line can be held accountable for failing to protect and provide adequate security for its passengers.
We offer free initial consultations to anyone who has a potential claim against RCCL or any other cruise line, via email, telephone toll free at 1-866-597-4529, or SKYPE. Contact us today to speak to an experienced lawyer who knows how to hold the cruise lines accountable when they put their profits ahead of their passengers’ safety.


Royal Caribbean Cruise Line’s Record Breaking Year

Written by admin on . Posted in Cruise Ship Accidents

Royal Caribbean Cruise Line is having a very good year, with new ships and record-breaking profits. Based in the Port of Miami, the company reported nearly $200 million in net income, up over 34% from just last year. With RCCL’s projected $8 billion in revenue for 2015, it is easy to understand why this cruise line is spending big money on promotions, new mega ships, and outrageous onboard activities like ice skating rinks, surfing, and skydiving simulators.
Perhaps RCCL’s profits reflect the enormous amount of marketing and advertising that RCCL undertakes to lure passengers aboard, not only in the United States but in China as well. In fact, RCCL’s Quantum of the Seas is now home ported in Shanghai. RCCL also owns a number of other cruise lines, such as Celebrity Cruises, Azamara Club Cruises, and several niche European cruise lines, such as Spain’s Pullmantur and France’s CDF, or Croisieres de France.

Royal Caribbean Launches New High End Cruise Ships

One of the market segments that RCCL may be losing is high-income passengers who do not want the mega ship experience but prefer the more intimate and luxurious accommodations traditionally found on higher-end cruise ships like Regent’s Seven Seas. To cater to more upscale passengers, who demand more sumptuous and contemporary surroundings, RCCL recently announced plans to unveil its Royal Suite Class program next May on its four largest ships: Anthem of the Seas, Quantum of the Seas, Allure of the Seas, and Oasis of the Seas. This first-class service will also be available on RCCL’s soon-to-be-launched Harmony of the Seas and Ovation of the Seas.

Three New Service Levels: Butlers Included

According to RCCL, the Royal Suite Class comprises three service levels based on the category of the passenger’s cabin, which they are calling Star Class, Sky Class, and Sea Class. Star Class cabins will include luxury suites with two-deck-high lofts, 24-hour butler-style “Royal Genie” service, free internet, and specialty dining and food packages. These cabins will also include ultra-luxury amenities made by Hermes, Ferragamo, and Frette.
The Royal Genie service is particularly interesting as the crew members providing it will be specially certified by something called the British Butler Institute, to provide service 24 hours a day. These butlers will be there to make dinner reservations, book shore excursions, and shine shoes.

New Ships, Same Passenger Contract

Regardless of where RCCL takes its cruise line, the passenger contracts will most likely contain the same language, hidden deep in the legal mumbo jumbo that most people never read or understand until after they have been involved in some kind of accident, incident, or injury while on a Royal Caribbean Cruise ship. That language requires that any claim against RCCL be initiated in Federal Court in Miami, Florida, within one year of the date of the incident, regardless of where in the world the accident may have occurred or where the passenger is from.

Cruise Ship Attorneys Holding Cruise Lines Accountable

Our law firm investigates hundreds of cases every year against the major cruise lines, such as RCCL, on behalf of people who have slipped, tripped and fallen, or suffered other types of injuries while on a cruise. We have nearly 50 years of combined legal experience in holding cruise lines accountable for passenger claims for lost wages, medical expense, and pain and suffering. Cruise ship accident cases are unique and are subject to multiple differing Federal, State, and International laws. Understanding how the laws apply to a certain set of facts as well as whether or not there is even a viable claim is important and requires access to crucial evidence, such as CCTV footage, medical records and diagnostic studies, nautical data, and marine engineering standards.
Cruise lines like RCCL employ a team of skilled and experienced admiralty injury lawyers in their Port of Miami offices who know how to defend and minimize any potential personal injury claim. Injured passengers also need aggressive and skilled advocates to protect their legal rights.

Free Consultation For Any Injured Cruise Ship Passenger

If you have sustained an injury or experienced an incident aboard an RCCL cruise ship, we recommend that you contact our offices and speak to one of our attorneys today. We provide free initial legal consultations via FACETIME, SKYPE, or phone toll free, at 1-866-597-4529 or email us at: Involving our law firm as soon as possible will make a significant difference in whether or not potential clients can obtain the full value of their claims. We certainly recommend that you consult with our firm before speaking to a representative of RCCL, signing any documents, or even attempting to negotiate a claim.

cruise-ship | Aronfeld Blog

Your Cruise Ship Contract; Beaching of the Costa Concordia

Written by Spencer Aronfeld on . Posted in Cruise Ship Accidents

Costa Cruises has long itself as “Italy’s Finest” and marketed itself as providing its passengers the uniquely Italian experience of fine food, wine and service. But now, it as has entered the race to build the biggest cruise ships,by ordering four new 6,600 passenger floating gargantuans will be powered by liquefied natural gas, to be build by Meyer Werft and Fincantieri.

In total Carnival has on order nine new colossal new cruise ships that will begin launching between 2019 and 2022 with the first new ship going to Carnival’s AIDA cruise line. By 2018 Carnival expect to add an additional 10 ships. Costa is based in Genoa, Italy but has been owned and operated by Carnival since 2000.

This announcement means that Carnival is not just looking to build its name brand-but its sub brands as well-which should lure passengers who want bigger ships but do not want the typical “Carnival Experience” to consider taking a AIDA or Costa cruise instead. Costa currently has 14 ships in its fleet and focuses primarily on the European market with cruise throughout the Caribbean, Europe, South America and the Middle East.

Most American cruise ship passengers probably had never heard of the Costa Cruises–until its ship the Costa Concordia ran aground and capsized off the coast of Tuscany in 2012 when its Captain, Francesco Schettino wanted to “salute” the tiny island of Giglio by sailing close by at night killing 32 people.

As the ship began to sink the captain was one of the first crew to escape his sinking ship abandoning many passengers were still on board. Two years after the accident, the wreckage of the Costa Concordia was finally towed back to Costa’s home port of Genoa for scrapping. The total cost of the disaster is estimated to be over $2 billion which includes the loss of the ship and salvage operations. Captain Schettino was found guilty of manslaughter for causing the shipwreck and abandoning his passenger and sentenced to 16 years in prison. His case is currently on appeal.

Accidents on a Costa Cruise Ship: Your Cruise Ship Contract

Like most cruise lines, Costa has a very complex and somewhat surprising requirements for suing them for passenger injuries. A passenger ticket on a Costa Cruise is actually a legal contract that most people are probably unaware they are entering when they book their cruise. In fact, the contract is 14 pages long, and in it passengers give up a lot of their legal rights against Costa in the event they are injured- this occurs well before the cruise or any accident, this happens at the time the ticket is purchased.

While Costa maintains its primary offices in Port of Genoa and cruises passengers from around the world, people who may get hurt on a Costa cruise by slipping, tripping or falling or any other type of accident are required to file any claims against Costa in the Southern District Court in Broward County, Florida, located in Fort Lauderdale, just up the road from Carnival’s headquarters in Doral. Any personal injury claim must be filed within one year of the date of the incident.

Our office has over 50 years of combined experience successfully battling the major cruise lines in and out of court to obtain fair and reasonable compensation for our clients. Call us today for a free initial consultation about your potential cruise ship accident claim. Not all accidents or injuries sustained aboard a cruise are cases-but understanding the difference and being able to prove how and why it happened as well as the long term medical and financial consequences requires passionate representation. Call us 1-866-597-4529 or email us at: and speak with an experienced cruise lawyer today by telephone, SKYPE or FACETIME.