Articles Posted in Tourism Crime

Published on:

ICV Logo.gifThe International Cruise Victims Association (ICV) was created five years ago to address issues, laws and regulations related to crimes on cruise ships. The ICV now has active membership in more than 20 countries and has spearheaded important changes in the cruise industry.

In 2006, several ICV members testified for the first time at a second Congressional hearing, presenting a 10-point program to improve safety on cruise lines. This list has grown to 13 points and has served as the basis for future legislation.

In 2007, two additional Congressional hearings took place with Rep. Doris Matsui leading this effort in the House. In June of 2008, under the leadership of Senator John Kerry, a hearing was then held in the U. S. Senate. This resulted in the introduction of the Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act which was passed in July 2010.

Published on:

Cruise ship at port.jpgThe “Wave Season” of cruise ship bookings – the period from January to March when the majority of cruises are booked and travel agents offer extra incentives – is fast approaching. This year, wave season comes on the heels of cruise ship safety concerns prominently highlighted in the news and in Washington, DC.

The Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act, signed into law in July, requires cruise lines to report crimes at sea, train staff to collect evidence of crimes, and install safety features such as peep holes on cabin doors.

Published on:

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement released crime figures for the first six months of 2010 compared with last year, showing an overall drop in major crimes in Florida. A total of 19,000 less violent crimes were committed. Overall crime is down 4.8%, whereas total violent crime (murder, forcible sex offenses, robbery and aggravated assault) is down by 10.7%. Total non-violent crime (burglary, larceny and motor vehicle theft) declined 3.8 percent.

However, the murder rate was up 3.6% and there was a 5.8 percent increase in domestic violence murder.

The Sun Sentinel reported that while the murder rate also rose in Palm Beach County compared to last year, the area saw a decline in other crimes. An official at the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office Violent Crimes Division attributed some of the crime drop to progress they’ve made curbing gang crimes and robberies, in part through cooperation with patrol officers and other police agencies. The County’s increase in violent robberies was attributed to the slow economy, which typically means more desperation, boldness and brazenness.

Published on:

Labor Day travel is expected to take more than 34.4 million Americans 50 miles or more from home this year. Florida Trend Magazine reports that 3.9 percent more Floridians will travel this year, compared with Labor Day in 2009. Travel to Orlando is already on the increase this summer and Orbitz.com ranks it in the top ten destinations for Labor Day, based on bookings.

© Hoosiergirl | Dreamstime.com

Entering Disney.jpg While enjoying your holiday weekend away from home, be mindful that when vacationing, we are by nature less attentive to dangers. We are often in a new place, distracted by amusements and sights, and are focused on enjoying the surroundings. Accidents and crimes can, and unfortunately do, occur. When something goes wrong and the fun comes to a screeching halt due to an accident or a crime, it’s important to know how to manage the situation in order to properly identify liabilities and recover your losses.

Published on:

ICV Logo.gifThe International Cruise Victims Association (ICV) represents victims of crime on cruise ships, their families and friends, and individuals concerned about the problems of victimization and disappearances on cruise ships. The organization advocates for legislative reform to protect passengers from crimes and increase the rights of victims of crimes that do occur on cruise ships, and provides support to victims of crimes occurring on cruise ships.

The goal of the organization is to contribute to growing a cruise industry where passengers and crew members are safe and secure from victimization while on board a cruise ship. ICV has given cruise crime victims a forum to tell their stories and inform the public that there are serious issues that need to be addressed by lawmakers. Media around the world and lawmakers are taking notice of the need for cruise industry reform.

The National Association for Victims of Crimes and the Rape, Assault, and Incest National Network (RAINN) have joined ICV in the effort to promote reform to the Cruise Line Industry.

Published on:

Donald Duck.jpgDisney has been sued by a Pennsylvania tourist alleging negligence, battery, negligent infliction of emotional distress, and intentional and reckless infliction of emotional distress – at $50,000 a pop. The woman claims that her breast was groped by the person in a Donald Duck costume whom she had asked for an autograph. The $200,000 civil lawsuit originally filed in Pennsylvania’s Court of Common Pleas in December 2009 has been transferred to Philadelphia’s federal court after a request from Disney to move it there.

The lawsuit also states the Orange County Sheriff’s Office has received 24 complaints alleging similar acts by costumed characters since 2004, according to The Orlando Sentinel’s report of the case. A Sheriff’s Office spokesman said that sex-crimes investigators are working on providing an official count. In 2004, a person dressed as Tigger was accused of groping a 13-year-old girl and her mother at Magic Kingdom’s Mickey’s Toontown Fair.

Published on:

Tourists at Miami Beach’s The Parisian Hotel on Collins Avenue were robbed at gunpoint inside their hotel room, reports The Miami Herald. The couple had returned to the hotel around midnight Sunday and found two men burglarizing their hotel room. The robbers took their personal belongings, cash, car keys, and their brown Dodge Avenger. Tipsters should call Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at 305-471-TIPS.

The couple was lucky – this could have turned out much worse. Inadequate premises security is too often the culprit in personal injury cases that occur in tourist destinations. Inadequate security and premises liability lawsuits usually involve criminal assaults and violent crime due to negligent security, insufficient lighting, inadequate security equipment, inadequate security personnel, or other causes. The law governing these cases is derived from the general principle that those who own or possess property have a duty to protect users from accidental, negligent, and intentional acts of third parties.

ResortTorts are cases of civil liability for negligent or criminal acts that arise out of a resort, vacation or recreational setting. involve aspects of hotel and motel safety, cruise ship litigation, pleasure boating and jet ski incidents, amusement and theme park liability, aquatic, diving and swimming incidents, foreign travel and medical emergencies, gaming and casinos, aviation (commercial and general), rental car liability, moped, bicycle and motorcycle safety, buses and tour guides, travel industry liability for crime victims, and medical care provided to vacationers. ResortTorts can encompass a vast array of types of cases but they all have one thing in common: tourists, business travelers and locals alike are all exposed to risk while traveling, vacationing or engaging in resort or pleasure activities.

Published on:

Cruise ship passageway.jpgCruise lines must now report to the FBI all crimes aboard cruise ships AND must take actions to protect the crime victims. The new legislation requiring these measures was passed in Congress last month. Once it is signed by President Obama, it will enforce security measures requiring ships to install peep holes on cabin doors and make further changes affecting rail heights, warning devices, and other security measures. Cruise lines will also be required to provide shipboard medical care for victims of sexual assault and medical staff that knows how to collect forensic evidence, reports USA Today.

Inadequate premises security is too often the culprit in personal injury cases that occur in tourist destinations, where vacationers naturally let their guard down to relax and ‘get away from it all.’ Inadequate security and premises liability lawsuits usually involve criminal assaults and violent crime due to negligent security, insufficient lighting, inadequate security equipment, inadequate security personnel, or other causes. The law governing these cases is derived from the general principle that those who own or possess property have a duty to protect users from accidental, negligent, and intentional acts of third parties.

Published on:

surveillance camera warning.jpgThe Miami Herald reports that the Miami Beach Budget Advisory Committee has voted: Officials should consider placing surveillance cameras in the city’s hot spot entertainment areas as a crime deterrent and a way to reduce police costs.

The new surveillance cameras would be installed in public areas to capture activity in tourist areas on tape – an invasion of privacy and a step towards ‘Big Brother,’ according to Mayor Matti Herrera Bower. “I don’t know that in a tourist area people would love to have cameras watching what they do,” she said.

Published on:

All 1,000 guests at one of Miami Beach’s most popular hotels were evacuated Saturday night after a deadly shooting at the Resort and Spa. Guests at a wedding party underway on the top floor of the hotel were among the evacuees, as was Prime Minister of Belize Dean Darrow, who was in the midst of a dinner speech and was accompanied by his own security team, reported NBC News.

Police have not released details of the incident, however both NBC and CBS4 reported details from various sources: Allegedly some men hired prostitutes after checking into the hotel but were also visited by a pimp who shot and killed one of them. The pimp and prostitutes allegedly escaped. Anyone with information about the shooting is asked to call Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at (305) 471-TIPS.

Inadequate security and premises liability lawsuits usually involve criminal assaults and violent crime due to negligent security, insufficient lighting, inadequate security equipment, inadequate security personnel, or other causes. In negligent security cases, the plaintiff who has been injured due to a criminal act brings an action against the owner or manager of the premises or business. Those who are in control or in a position to prevent the incident where the plaintiff was injured are the parties who are most often defendants. The law governing these cases is derived from the general principle that those who own or possess property have a duty to protect users from accidental, negligent, and intentional acts of third parties.
Continue reading →