HAL Sexual AssaultThe Sun Sentinel reports today that a Holland America Line (HAL) crew member sexually assaulted and then tried to throw a woman from her balcony.

Reporter Paula McMahon writes that the crime occurred aboard the HAL Nieuw Amsterdam. 

The crew member is identified as Ketut Pujayasa, age 28. from Indonesia. He worked a stateroom attendant. He used a master key card to gain illegal entry into the victim’s cabin.

The article describes that the crew member "appeared with no warning inside the passenger’s darkened stateroom in the middle of the night, raped, beat, punched and strangled her and then tried to throw her from the balcony into the ocean in international waters somewhere off the coast of Roatan, Honduras."

The attack was horrific. The newspaper states that the crew member struck the woman several times including using a laptop computer and a curling iron, and that he "used a phone cord and curling iron cord to try to silence her screams and yells for help."

The attack "went back and forth from her bed to the stateroom balcony and back into the room."

The criminal charges against the HAL crew included an account of another passenger who saw the victim when she ran out of her cabin, dressed only in a tank top that was covered in blood:

"The passenger also noted that [the victim] had a curling iron wrapped and tangled around her neck and/or hair. He also described [her] as having black eyes and visible bruising around her neck and shoulders. [The woman], fearing death was imminent, asked the passenger to relay to her family how much she loved them."

The 31 year-old woman was flown by air ambulance to a hospital in South Florida because of her severe injuries.

The crew member was booked into the Broward County jail. He claims that the rape and assault were revenge because he felt slighted.

We previously mentioned the incident in an article on February 15th: Crew Member Assaults Passenger Aboard HAL’s Nieuw Amsterdam During "Bare Necessities" Cruise

Our View: We have attended six Congressional hearings before the U.S. House of Representatives and the Senate about crimes against passengers, There have been several hearings where other women have described the danger of permitting male cabin attendants to have access to master key cards for the passengers’ cabins. There is no good reason to permit male cabin attendants to be responsible for cabins where there are single women or children. Their key cards must be deactivated after working hours.

Photo: Ketut Pujayasa – Sun Sentinel / Broward County Sheriff’s Office 

  • Anon


    Innocent until proven guilty.

    I’ll say this story is not entirely true. There something fishy with this story. Someone else life is in stake in here. And he could be in jail for life for doing nothing wrong.

    Please dont judge to quickly.

  • manicdrummer

    How does a psycho like this get a job on board a cruise ship in the first place? Don’t they do background checks? And since when does Indonesia allow people to rape and kill someone?

  • Tommy Alvanto

    Most Indonesian people who work on board (HAL) are friendly. That’s is one of the reason HAL still exist. Passenger love the Indonesian crew. There must be strong reason Indonesian crew member done such a thing. Hope it will ends up good things.

  • Renee

    I don’t care what the reason was, this is a despicable act and can not be tolerated. Due to the locations where these crew members come from, it is impossible to due to good back ground check on them. And to the poster who said there is something fishy and that he is not guilty until proven guilty. Get your head out of your ars. She ran out of her cabin in that condition and the crew member was in the room. Give me a break.

  • yoga

    Its hard to believe, when people leave their family to work away from them and do such thing. Witnes is the only way to know get the truth.for some reason people can do everything,to get what they want. Holland america guest….? They willing to die for compliment……I have been dealing with them for 10 years i know what they are.

  • Joe smags

    Some passenger sometime will do anything to avoid paying , including false aligation for rape, American are full of drama, they complain about everything they could from the first time they step on the cruise . Finding a way to cut cost. Some single lady’s already are so lonely , and sluty they are desperate for sex on the cruise , they invite a crew member, if they are not satisfied they do something like this

  • Joe

    Dear all … Have you ever think how low the company pay their wedges compare than the other ship? Ok he has to be charged by law because of what he did… But please investigate everything. About holland america crew, how they work with salary that arrange by management on the ship that full of corruption… Thank you

  • j.

    I agree with Joe. They need to investigate EVERYTHING. They need to look into the conditions and the pressure these crew members deal with. I’ve been on many cruise lines and I know on HAL the crew members are overworked and treated poorly.

    There is a division among the crew and there is an obvious hierarchy. At the top you have your Captain and officers, hotel director/managers, supervisors, next are the entertainers (singers & dancers) , then you have your concessionary (spa/shops) and your musicians, and then at the bottom you have the filipinos and the Indonesians (bar serving, wait staff and housekeeping etc..). Between the filipinos and the indonesians there is an underlying sense of one culture is better then the other.

    Most of their contracts are 8 months with the option to extend…can you imagine 13 months at sea???? Being on a ship for so long can really mess with your psyche. However this is no reason to attack and rape anyone. I’m just glad to hear that the victim is still alive.

  • robby

    Please do not jump to conclusion so quickly before everything has been investigated clearly. Someone’s life is in stake. Let the law Work accordingly. And May God show the truth againts this case.

  • Baltazar A. Rafaes

    @ robby… with your comment….Let the law Work accordingly.


    My name is Baltazar A. Rafales, as a Plaintiff, Federal Expert Witness, Declaratory, Exhibitor and Class Action Representative of “Rafales v. HAL et al” and being a Federal Expert Witness, Declaratory and Exhibitor for “Priyanto v. HAL et al”… HAL proposed a settlement to end up the Rafales v. HAL et al and Priyanto v. HAL et al. However, it was found out that they are in BAD FAITH for their very own proposal. The Final Settlement that supposedly been settled before December 31, 2011 was still unresolved up to this very moment. Base on the reports of my colleagues, HAL and UPL are desperately forcing the embarking crew to sign a waiver saying that the HAL Class Members who are affected in 2004-2006 Illegal Travel Expenses deduction were agreed to pay their travel expenses.

    The result of Rafales v. HAL et al and Priyanto v. HAL et al—was very obvious BAD FAITH, in order to discourage the seafarers around the world to file a case against their employers/principal or ships owner, manning agency and seafarers union.

    Mr. Farzam my counsel admitted in our one hour phone conversation on March 13, 2012 (around 10:00am to 11:00am Philippine local time), he said…

    “I did my utmost best; we worked hard to get the Verdict results Bhal. However, I got no choice to choose BAD than Worse! Why? Listen to me Bhal, I do believe you are intelligent person, and I believed you know that the US Court is under the rule of riches people and influential company”.

    This means that the law in United States of America has not been established to maintain JUSTICE but it is very clear enough to believed Mr. Farzam confession.

  • Ib ing

    He may be doing something wrong. But the LAW must be FAIR in this case.He may have a good background, but things might have happened to him and he could not control himself for some reasons. Anyway, after so many years it may be the worst incident. But it does not mean that Indonesian peolple are bad. This one maybe an one bad example. Look at the history of HOW H.A.L has grown and developed in the cruise industry thanks to INDONESIAN PEOPLE! So be WISE in judging this case.

  • Nia

    I was working with cruise line also as a cabin attendant..and I have meet a lot of guest do crazy thing like this….once my friend was sent home just because one of his female guest feel that he try to attack her because she is alone on her cabin…personally I know that guy it’s so friendly…company sent him home just to protect their name from public….after few months he work again with the company….our company knows what really happen they just keep their good name on public…but on this case sending him on the jail without deep investigation is really unfair…he has family also…he is human same like me and you…..

  • crew cabin inspection

    No wonder single lady. Im pretty sure she always fooling around looking for someone. And when the crew refused her the drama starts,free of charge or etc. We have better culture and manner especially with foreigners. We always keep on smiling even it’s hard. For us working on the ship much better than in serval places we appreciated sooo much. Even sometimes our management see us not like human beings. Like robot or animal. If the guests complain to crew regarding the services FYI sometimes we lack of support equipments because the management it self try to cut budget. For us (ordinary lowest rank crew) we always try to make all guests happy. But what can we do? If we got badass management-sorry for my poor English, HBX

  • Bagus darmayasa

    This happen was done,so for those people read this news.they’re feel negatif thinking about indonesia crew membership.this happen can be happen to all of us also,my opinion just give suport to KETUT,i bellieve something happen with him,indonesian crew membership keep more attention,your big family suport you for do excelent job,

  • Jack

    Let me start by saying that I strongly condemn what Ketut has done. However.. as a former cruise director I have seen how often guests treat the Filippino and Indonesian with disrespect and NOT treat them as a human being.
    The Indonesian crew are the reason guests return to HAL.
    They leave their families for at least 10 months, work 7 days a week around 12 hrs a day. Not a single day off!
    HAL likes to prevent ever having another rape on board.
    Consider this HAL:
    No more Bare Neccesities Cruises! First of all, the crew didn’t ask to work in a nude environment (unlike employees in a nude hotel), they feel offended by naked people. Publuc nudity is not a part of their culture.
    But more IMPORTANT:
    Imagine men, not having had any kind of intimacy with their wives for many months, sometimes almost a year, being confronted with naked women flaunting their bodies.
    Unduly tempting..
    Again NO reason for rape. But stop BN cruises.
    I wish both Ketut and the guest all the best and strength!

  • tinikini

    Good point, Jack about the BN cruise being no more.

    I see that a lot of cruise staff have posted on this tragic incident for a variety of reasons.

    I have been on two HAL cruises. The Eurodam and the Zuiderdam. The staff on both ships were FANTASTIC and the service was SUPERIOR. They are overworked and underpaid. They need days off. I watched crew be treated poorly by passengers, and it is quite sad. I consoled a waitress from the Pinnacle Grill, when I found her in a bathroom stall crying her eyes out because some arse had been rude to her. They have given up so much to be a crew member and to give passengers a perfect vacation. I can totally understand that a crew member could snap under the conditions they are forced to work under. While as Jack said this in NO way makes the rape okay, and I agree, but on the flip side how much are these crew members supposed to endure?

    When you are away from home for 8 to 10 months at a time at sea you have to have days off and unwind from the demanding job of working with the general public. You also have to have a HR team that actually cares about their crew and their well being. If you don’t have this you snap, it is really that simple. It doesn’t matter where you fly your flag or where you float your boat, if you are smart enough to run a multi billion dollar company you should know that these conditions are a precursor for disaster.

  • Made From Bali

    We all Balinese people, pray for Ketut. hope he will be strong with the case that face him. America government need to do investigation deeply to get the truth. I don’t know if there a trick of passenger to avoid the cost of ship by make a drama. But Ketut is a human, he has family same like us.

  • ketut dana Bali

    I’m balinese tourist driver, I beliave strongly something must be happen behind that tragedy,..I have been trough all that feeling,14 years, some tourists are very badly they treated us like an animal even though in our own country, but nothing we can do, always have to smile even its really bad….BIG sport for KETUT, American Government have to do deep investigation…as a Balinese he will not do that silly things if passenger or somebody treat him very very very bad. But only the way he did on wrong action.

  • Dape

    HAL always spoil their guest with anything they’ve got, including the rule of “Passengers always right”. No matter what the guest do or say, somehow they have they rights. even we reported any misconduct from guest to us, ship management did nothing at all. In the sake of company’s rating and by hope they will return for some more cruise with us. Drama kings and queen passengers are commonly breed by this silly Head office point of view, and more and more passengers get smart on doing dramas similar like this, just to get free wine, complimentary spa, free cruises or even worse like Ketut’s case. So in any kind of point of view HAL would never defend their crew member, they will always think we all are easily replaceable, there will be more and more Indonesian or any other asians to be replace with if we are unfairly got sack or resigned. I recently resigned from HAL, due to my family emergency last January. Usually we are allowed to pay our own expenses of tickets and our replacement tickets. But according to the Human Resource Manager, HAL head office in Seattle refused my request and I should stick on board till my last day on the contract for no reason. The Human Resources Manager only gave me option to resigned immediately from the company, but still had to pay $2300, include US Custom Guardian fee. So even in emergency cases or family matters you still cannot request for early depart nowadays, even if you still willing to pay all the expense. And the only way to do it by quitting your job. And I am just one the cases of many on those especially Vista class ships. So if your speaking of justice, there will be no justice or fair trade in the eye of those HAL Head Office Connection. Even some of passengers started no noticed that. (some of the good ones by means).

  • fithriadi surya bhakti

    hope everything done in GOOD WAYS.
    investigated the suspect, protect the victim.
    LAW for both sides FOR SURE

  • Pam Romano

    I am sorry to say but I don’t believe in this accusation,I was working on the ship for 6 years and I, myself have witnessed a lot of false accusations of guests to crew members, some of the guests are really drama maker and a lot of crew members can testify that. Ships have strict rules, crew members are afraid to commit mistakes as they all know they can easily loose their jobs in one snap, people from different countries try their luck in working abroad just to give their family back home a comfortable life that crew members are not experiencing on board as they work 10hours a day. Why i am saying this? Bec the suspect is a stateroom steward, it means, he has been in the company for a long time as I knew that most people on that position waited for so long to be promoted as stateroom steward. So I don’t believe that a person will do such a crime like that knowing that his job will be at stake after a long time in the company. May justice prevails in this case. May both parties get what they have to get.

  • Lena Monica

    ‘He claims that the rape and assault were revenge because he felt slighted’.
    Sentenced to death !!!
    Finish him !!!

  • i was working on HAL before,i just finished 1 contract only in HAl (10 month)..i dont wanna comeback again to that company(DAM SHIP) because they treat as very different with another crew from another country…indonesian and Philipino crew is like a slave there….salary very low but we working very hard…crew from europe,african and another country beside indonesian and philipino they can enjoy lunch, dinner and supper at the lido,,what they eat it’s same with what guest eat at LIDO restaurant,,,but as we h=just can enjoy our b’fast,lucnh,dinner at Creww mes..with very different kind of selection meal..something i dont wanna eat them because always same every day (Daging Kotak)..
    Please investigate..i hope my friend who still working in HAL now they have good time there now and enjoy the job

  • Laura

    Yeah there are 2 sides to every story! So here it is. I used to work for this company & I have friends who were on the cruise and told me what happened. Um did they mention it was the Bare Necessities charter? That is the NUDE cruise. A nude cruise which is an insult to most strict religions but these passengers are gross. They do disgusting things in public and not everyone adheres to the same hygiene. Imagine you have to work and see these naked people, you don’t have a choice you have to work or pay for you way home and lose your job. There you are in line at the buffet and this man is next to you and he’s tall so his junk is on the counter and they are sitting in the chairs with their bare ass! The smell is unruly and no one is attractive. Orgies take place, there are swingers etc. And on top of it, people go on vacation and they are still rude! Not everyone but there are quite a few bigots cruising and they abuse the staff and the company does not need their money that badly! I was in entertainment dept. but I have seen some of the way people leave there staterooms. Someone has to clean that up, everything from shit, blood and piss stains. They should never do this cruise charter ever again. It is psychologically stressful and you don’t know the charter is happening when you sign on or accept your contract you find out once you are there.

  • Laura:

    Your internet provider (IP) address indicates that you are writing from Carnival’s headquarters in Miami. Why don’t you complain to Carnival which owns HAL.

    None of what you claim possibly justifies the HAL crew member’s crime.

  • Jaime g polaron

    Im a crew member of holland america line from 1991 up to aug 2013 so my last contrct was in m s zuiderdam.at the time the executive chef there is bitta curuvilla indian guy.and 2nd executive chef was allen indian guy also .i was assigned in saucer.every thing is fine at that tme.suddenly another indian guy comming on board.so it means new indian guys was no idea at all in the kitchen.they took me out in the saucier .the chef and the 2nd chef transfer me in the lido rest.my job is everything is ok.according to my chef.my performance.is bellow.standard.in the other cse all cooks and chef d partie that has an id no.of 3or4 digit are they going to dismissed w/ out any big deal so it means we are sending home.w/ out any reason.now we are asking for our riterment the h.a.l n u.p.l amosoup.pls investicate this matter.thank u and more power to all cruise line.

  • Baltazar A. Rafales

    Notice to the Public:


    Dear (Confidential),

    My name is Baltazar A. Rafales a former employee of Holland America Line Inc. (HAL). In July 2009 I became a Plaintiff; Federal Expert Witness; Exhibitory; Declaratory and Filipino Class Action Representative in Rafales v. HAL et al and a Federal Expert Witness; Exhibitory and Declaratory in Priyanto v. HAL et al.”

    Please see below links:

    “Unfortunately, the settlement was placed on hold. Based on a phone conversation with Atty. Joseph S. Farzam on March 13, 2012, 10:00am to 11:00am, Atty. Farzam admitted to me that the case has been “compromised” because HAL bribed him and even the US Court, in order to influence the US Court to execute a “Settlement tainted in bad faith”. For this reason, the cases are still pending. To date, I did not received even a single centavo for the reimbursement and for the reward as (a) Plaintiff; Federal Expert Witness; Exhibitory; Declaratory and Filipino Class Action Representative in Rafales v. HAL et al and (b) Federal Expert Witness; Exhibitory and Declaratory in Priyanto v. HAL et al.”

    Me and my co-Filipino seafarers who are adversely affected were desperate looking for someone who could help me to travel to United States of America to pursue and reopen my pending case or file an Appeal and file another case against HAL prior to the issue of CBA-1 and CBA-2 as per below info.



    Recently I am truly happy to know that there is a company such as (Confidential) who anticipate the needs of more than 15,000 Filipino seafarers and more than 20,000 Indonesian seafarers.

    I am looking forward and hoping to hear from you, with regards to my prayers.

    Baltazar A. Rafales

    Daffodil St. Purok Cagasan, Polomolok, (Poblacion) South Cotabato, 9504, Philippines

    On Saturday, October 11, 2014 2:27 AM

    Mr. Rafales,

    The case of Priyanto v. M/S Amsterdam has been over since November 2012, my understanding is you wish to reopen it?


    Dear Mr. (Confidential),

    Thank you for the good news and quick response!

    My second question to the US Court, is, how come that the Priyanto v. HAL et al can possibly be closed if the said, Federal Expert Witness; Exhibitory and Declaratory, a person who made his efforts to contact Priyanto to report to his lawyer André E. Jardini to pushed his pending case since 2006. Pending because of lack, of proofs documents that prove HAL was guilty on his claims, a person who created and supplied all the documents that leads to reached the Settlement has not received yet even a single centavo from his effort, perspiration, labor and expenses in communication etc etc? Please see attached PDF number 03.

    I am very thankful to know that my case is not yet over. Just in case it will be complicated for your firm to release a funds needed to re-open or file an Appeal to Rafales v. HAL et al, I had contacted my co-Filipino seafarers who has been affected of HAL, UPL and AMOSUP violations of ILO Convention No. 147 and Wage Act, 46 U.S.C. § 10313, there are more or less 15,000 Filipino seafarers affected, please see attached file, Number 10, the text in blue are (982) Filipino seafarers who has a direct communication with me, and perhaps, they are just waiting to know if the case will be in a 100% sure in a win-win situation, before most of them shall cooperate with us?

    With regards to the 22 Filipino Seafarers who’s names was mentioned in the dockets, I noticed that, a deception has taken placed, based on the report of one of the intervenor. Most of them had no idea how comes that their names was included as an interveors, he said, Mr. Balen and Abenoja, approached them to signed a documents, and their understanding is, they are collecting the signed documents to support the Rafales case against HAL. When I double checked, the names mentioned in dockets I also noticed that some of them are not listed in updated crew list, if all of them has been fully aware in the process of intervenor, how come that one of them has submitted his affidavit to my attention saying he had no idea why his name has been included in the group of intervenors?

    Below are the list of 25 Filipino Seafarers, possibly accepted bribed money from HAL, UPL and AMOSUP to pervert the Law of the United States of America, resulting into a BAD FAITH Settlement in Rafales v. HAL et al and Priyanto v. HAL et al.

    EMP ID Name Function

    ????? HIDALGO, LEONARDO JR. ?????
    ????? MENDOZA, MARK GARY ?????
    ????? QUIATAO, MICHAEL ?????
    ????? SOUS, JOSE JR ?????
    ????? SY, ARNEL ?????
    ????? VILLEJO, EDUARDO ?????

    As you can see I included Romano E. Marcella, Darwin Consuelo, Oscar Alexis Encarnacion, Jr. In the group of Romeo Balen and Chandler Abenoja, because, if you will notice the below info…

    ((3.07 Termination Based on Exclusion Requests.
    HAL may, in its sole and absolute discretion, elect to terminate this Agreement if the exclusion requests as provided for in the Preliminary Approval Order and the Notice exceed 25. HAL may effect termination under this Paragraph by written notice, which HAL’s counsel shall serve on the trial court in Rafales and on Plaintiffs’ Counsel, by hand delivery or first class mail, such that the notice is delivered or postmarked no later than fifteen (15) days after the last day for the receipt of exclusion requests under this Agreement as provided in the Notice.))

    Perhaps, it is clear enough to say that HAL tried to bribe those Filipino seafarers so that if more than 25 Filipino seafarers will accept a bribed, then they can easily terminate the Rafales and Priyanto case? In the issue of Romano E. Marcella, Mr. Farzam told me that Mr. Marcella has decided to be excluded in the settlement? How come? Since year 2005 he was waiting for a chance to be heard his claims, then when it is almost over he will say I don’t need the money? Maybe because, money from the settlement is just a penny, and bribed money is much bigger?

    “My Dream is to established or to be a part of an organization who will administer and deliver JUSTICE to the entire seafarers and/or workers around the world—to appeal to the rich people NOT to ripped-off the workers pocket. My dream is to promote and strengthen the Employer-Employee Relationship in order to achieve a solid foundation that practice to adhere voluntary JUSTICE to all mankind—that would make the world peaceful and a better place to live.”
    —Baltazar A. Rafales

    Hope to hear from your good office.


    Baltazar A. Rafales

    Daffodil St. Purok Cagasan, Polomolok, (Poblacion) South Cotabato, 9504, Philippines

  • Noy

    I personally condemn what my colleague Ketut did. However the first one to be blame is the HAL management. Why? because they are greedy, they just want profit, profits.. money for the company. But they do not care crewmember welfare, security. I was there onboard for bare necessities nude cruise but unfortunately there is no preparation onto what to expect, what to do just in case, no option given for the crew. I personally complaint this to HRM Ashley W, send email to CEO and other personality that I thought ready to at least to listen but no one! is ready to that why because where just crew.. What can you say when guest are fighting( Lido) a guest masturbates and kicking other guest cabin, etc.. plus the big incident.. Now, Mariners tell me are you gonna come back to HAL that will treat you VVIP because crewmember doesn’t have choice even they are treated fair, their well being put my the management in danger zone.. they already did that many times. I cannot blame you why? Because Indonesian & Filipino crew member are the real hospitable, hard working individual on board that will served you wholeheartedly with a genuine smile despite of what we experienced received from the management even if we meet our VVIP guest expection. Now, tell Me Mr. Stein do you think we deserve this kind of treatment?