A 28-year-old cruise ship worker has been arrested after being accused of raping a passenger aboard a Holland America Line vessel and then trying to throw her overboard, according to authorities.
The FBI arrested the man Sunday when the MS Nieuw Amsterdam returned to Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale. The incident apparently occurred early Friday morning in international waters off the coast of Roatan, Honduras.
The victim, a 31-year-old U.S. woman, told detectives that she was attacked and raped in her stateroom. She went on to tell authorities that her attacker attempted to throw her from the balcony, but she escaped and received help from another passenger.
The accused eventually turned himself in. According to reports, the 28-year-old Indonesian man told investigators he attacked the victim because she had disrespected him earlier.
The man has been charged with attempt to commit murder and aggravated sexual abuse.
Holland America Line issued a statement on Tuesday stating that they are working with the authorities to understand how the incident occurred and what additional actions the company can take to make sure nothing like this ever happens again.
“At Holland America Line, the safety of our guests is our highest priority, and we are shocked and deeply saddened by this incident,” Holland America Line president and CEO Stein Kruse said in a news release. “To our knowledge, no incident like this has occurred in our company’s 140-year history.”
The MS Nieuw Amsterdam took a seven-day western Caribbean charter cruise that left from Fort Lauderdale on Feb. 9.
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