A newspaper in Mexico and cruise expert Professor Ross Klein report that a young woman from Royal Caribbean’s Freedom of the Seas cruise ship was apparently drugged and sexually assaulted by employees of Senor Frog’s in Cozumel, Mexico last Friday, August 10, 2012.

The article states that the woman (reportedly around 19-20 years of age) was cruising on a Royal Caribbean cruise ship which called on Cozumel. Her family went on a tour and ended up at Senor Frog’s which is a popular bar frequented by cruise passengers and other tourists. The newspaper explains that the young woman and other family members drank and she danced with one of the employees who worked Senor Frogs Cozumelwith several other men as disc jockeys (DJ’s).  

The young woman ended up being invited into the DJ’s "cabin," an enclosed area of the restaurant from where music is played. The DJ’s gave her a drink and she thereafter lost track of things but just remembers vague images of the four men attacking her and trying to fight them off. 

The circumstances were particularly brutal with reports that other employees went into the booth to watch, and some men were beating the victim.  

She was taken back to the cruise ship and experienced pain and burning in her genital area and had bruises on her body.  Her family decided to leave the cruise and stay on the island to report the incident to the Mexican police. 

Another newspaper reports that the four Senor Frog employees were taken to a local magistrate who promptly released them. We are not referring to this newspaper because it mentions the victim’s name. The newspaper also indicates that police records indicate that from January to June 2012 there were seven complaints of rape.  It is less than clear whether the article refers to the bar or Cozumel.  Women raped in Mexico rarely obtain justice.

This is not the first report of rape of a cruise passenger in Cozumel or the first rape of a Royal Caribbean passenger who went to a Senor Frog’s during a cruise.

In June, we mentioned a lawsuit filed against Royal Caribbean arising out of a gang rape of a young woman in Cozumel from the Royal Caribbean Oasis of the Seas.  The cruise line provided the passenger with a map of the shopping locations recommended by Royal Caribbean. A gang of men brutally raped the young woman while she visited one of the recommended stores.

Royal Caribbean does not warn cruise passengers of the danger of being sexually assaulted or violently attacked in Cozumel.  Cozumel is one of the few ports capable of accommodating the Genesis project ships like the Allure and the Oasis and it is my opinion that the cruise line doesn’t want to scare anyone off from traveling to this Mexican port.

Last year a young woman from Poland, working aboard the Royal Caribbean Allure of the Seas, was murdered while ashore in Cozumel.  

Royal Caribbean knows that bars ashore in ports of call present dangers of date rape drugs and sexual assault. 

Last year a Royal Caribbean passenger was raped and severely beaten after drinking at a Senor Frog’s in Nassau.

Royal Caribbean Freedom of the Seas Cruise Ship - Sexual AssaultCruise lines have an obligation to warn of dangers ashore in the ports of call that they sail to and where there guests are reasonably likely to frequent such as local bars near the cruise ships.  

Royal Caribbean in particular, acknowledges that it has a duty to inform cruise passengers of dangers like this. The cruise industry publication ‘World Cruise Industry Review" interviewed the head of "Global Security" at Royal Caribbean, Gary Bald, about the cruise line’s obligation to warn cruise passengers of dangers in ports of call.  In an article entitled "Safe Harbor," Mr. Bald stated that as far as looking for dangers to passengers in ports of call, "I’m locked in and tuned in around the clock, 24/7.”   

The article states that "Bald is happy to share security information with both the crew and the passengers. “All guests are my responsibility,” he says, “and I don’t want some more prepared than others.” 

It will be interesting to see whether Mr. Bald and his cruise line warned this latest victim and her family about the prior rapes and attacks in Cozumel and other Royal Caribbean ports of call.  


Photo credit: Top: Senor Frog’s – Julián Miranda/SIPSE; bottom – Wikipedia / Andres Manuel Rodriguez

  • Liz Jones

    My family and I were on the Oasis of the Seas and stopped by that very bar the day before. I also attended the shopping talk while on the cruise, where details of shopping and maps are given out. I can tell you that on Oasis there was never any mention of any of the prior incidents or need for caution. I am infuriated that we were not given this information as I did have my daughter and nieces with us. We were all very aware that we are in another country and did take certain precautions, but having that information would have been good to know. Forewarned is forearmed.

  • william n.

    from the same newspaper on tuesday and full facts


  • Morgan

    I was on the Freedom of the Seas the day of the attack and witnessed the family leave the boat. When attending a question and answer session with the officers of the ship, the last day of sailing, a passenger asked what caused the ship to be delayed leaving the port of Cozumel and the captain’s answer was ” a flat tire”. I am APPALLED that the captain could make lite of what happened now that I know what really happened to that poor girl. The captain the other officers dropped the subject very quickly and moved on. This is a disgrace that the cruise ship did not inform it’s passengers of the danger that had occurred! As for the victim…she exited the ship in a wheelchair with her family.

  • Alma

    OK. this is bullshit the girl lie, and lie alot… she was drunk, no one give her nothing to drink, u guys shuld ask for the bar video and post it.. so people can see the truth about it.. like she was dancin with the guys thats truth, but no one rape her, come on.. make the video public so people can watch, like the Dj wasnt dancing with her, she cudnt prove, it was a guy that arrive with her, and he was touching her all around the, thats the one i guess she has sex with, and no one of the crew of Senor Frogs.

  • Bee

    Seriously, the cruise line has a duty to inform their guests of crime at a port-of-call? What about if you hop on a plane and go to Cozumel for a vacatopm, does the airline have the same duty? How about the hotel or resort, do they have that duty? It has become too easy to sue the cruise lines and this is due, in part, to the stupid cruise lines “settling” because they are afraid of bad publicity…smh.

  • Victoria

    Was it really the full facts?

  • Karen Greer

    I just returned from a carnival cruise and our ship stopped in Cozumel. I was a chaperon and about 50 new high school graduates were on the cruise. The kids went to Mr. Sanchos and to Señor Frogs. One of the girls in the group was offered a shot and she wasn’t drinking heavily. She thought the guy offering her the shot worked at the bar and within 5 minutes she blacked out. She became violently ill and couldn’t walk but could hear what was going on around her. Thankfully her friends took care of her. One of the boys carried her back to the cruise ship and they put her on a cart and then a wheel chair. After a couple of hours she was fine. I shudder to think what would if happened if this girl’s friends weren’t so diligent in taking care of her. Cozumel isn’t safe. Only go out in a group and watch what you drink.