Roatan, Honduras - Update on Crime

We've received a fair share of hate e-mail this year after we reported on several crimes against cruise tourists in Roatan during the first three months of this year. Many expatriate property owners and business operators became highly agitated when we were the first in the U.S. to report on the murder of a NCL crew member shot near the port in April.

Two men were arrested regarding the crew member murder. The first man arrested was quickly arrested but apparently had nothing to do with the murder. The second man, who apparently killed the NCL employee, was shot in the leg by his friends and turned over to the police for a modest little Roatan Murder Suspectranson. He remains in jail.

A U.S. citizen, Cory Lee Beckner, who lives in Roatan was arrested for allegedly being involved in an armed robbery of a family visiting the island on a cruise ship. His sister recently posted, on our Facebook Page, an affidavit from a local police department suggesting that her brother is innocent. If this is true, then whoever robbed the several cruise tourists has not been apprehended.

In the last two months, there have been several break-ins of homes and businesses run by expatriate U.S. citizens and local residents of roatan. Many people have expressed frustration with the crimes and the absence of any follow-up by the understaffed and ill-equipped local police.

Just last Sunday, a local resident was found murdered, apparently killed with a concrete block which was found bloodied upon discovery of the dead body. The incident reportedly occurred near the impoverished Balfate colony area.  

The arrests of two gunmen who allegedly killed two residents in separate incidents over the course of the last year or so was recently a topic of discussions in Roatan among expatriates. Some people are calling for the alleged gunmen to be publicly hanged to deter other murderers. 

The president of Honduras and tourism officials have announced meetings with the cruise lines to deal with the reports of crime in Roatan. There have been no details released of what has been discussed.

The expatriate community in Roatan is an interesting lot. Half of the people there spend considerate effort trying to convince you how safe and peaceful the island is. But they have a different conversation amongst themselves. There are others who are interesting in exposing the crime problem in the hope that the problem will be addressed and improved.

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Comments (8) Read through and enter the discussion with the form at the end
cesar gonzalez - May 27, 2014 1:35 PM

Come visit Roatan anytime bring your family or girlfriend. Always be welcome.
Ps. Bring sunscreen.

Cesar A. Gonzalez - May 27, 2014 8:11 PM

Hi Jim.
In as much as many do not appreciate your reporting, please be welcome to come to Roatan anytime. Bring your family, or your girlfriend,


Steve - May 27, 2014 9:11 PM

What is your hatred of this island? More than half of what you are writing about are the same types of theft that occurs in the US and everywhere else in the world. In other words. nothing to do with tourism or cruises. Take a look in the mirror and you will see that senseless violent crime like what happened to Jacob are not unique to the Caribbean. The US has a new mass murder just about every week, some that target young children. Shopping malls, churches, offices, schools are all targets. Your vendetta against a small Caribbean island that has grown faster it was ready for is confusing, especially when you post alleged crimes that are not maritime related, and usually without citation of your sources.

EX Roatan resident - May 28, 2014 12:31 AM

Same old same old. Thank you for shining a light on what really goes on in that hellhole. Nothing has chaged since we left years ago and nothing will ever change. No amount of lies will ever convince me to consider going back, it is a cesspool of violence that goes unpunished.
SO glad not to be there any longer. A truly evil place.

Kelvin - May 28, 2014 10:50 AM

Noting will change the crime rate is out of control number 1 murder captial of the world Honduras what local authority can do, this issues is out of hand. Hi Jim great job in keeping us posted on the latest crime affecting the cruise industry. I'm a seaman for 16 yrs now been many times in Roatan and it's really getting out of hand...

Jim Walker - May 28, 2014 4:05 PM

"Steve:" Hatred/vendetta? Nonsense. Your island has a crime problem. Cruise employee/passengers shot, robbed at gunpoint or machete-point and the expatriates all cover it up. We are paradise you say. But the local police have no resources and no will to catch the bad guys. They fear retribution. Citation of sources? You know everything mentioned here occurred. Many people on Roatan are sick of the crime but they don't want the wrath of the resorts, restaurants, bars, dive shops or tour guides.

EX Roatan resident - May 29, 2014 12:45 AM

Jim, I applaud you for calling things like they are.There is no hatred or vendetta in your words, you write about the reality we wish we had known about before we moved there believing the whole "paradise" lie. Resorts and the tourism industry are like the local mafia,covering up crime so people continue falling for this dangerous place hook,line and sinker. I wish you had been around when my family and I made the decision to move to Roatan.Instead,we went and had to leave a few years later after seeing that if you live there,it's not "if" but rather "when" you'll get assaulted,robbed or killed. Best to stay away altogether.

rolando - May 29, 2014 6:52 PM

Thanks for the information my family have been looking for a warm place to retire, time to look someplace else

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