Robbed Cruise Shippers
Carnival Demands Action to Ensure Safety of its Passengers on Roatan

March 1st, 2008
by Thomas Tomczyk

[private] As two groups of Carnival cruise ship visitors are robbed, Carnival threatens to widtdraw their ships from calling on Roatan if nothing is done. In a ZOLITUR emergency meeting, a Lps. 200,000 reward was issued by a group of businessmen, that would lead to capture of the assailants.

Andy Bodden, 42, from Oak Ridge was accused of robbing two Carnival tourists and was arrested on January 17. While he was accused of robbing two tourists stopped in a taxi by the Palmetto road on January 9, Bodden recalls being involved in a robbery in late December. According to him the robbery took place on a dirt road in First Bight around 2pm: Bodden claims that he only drove the two middle aged cruise ship passengers and that two masked men armed with knives came out of the bushes while they stopped to take some photos. Bodden says that the two tourists gave up all their valuables, but no struggle ensued and no one was injured. Bodden says he occasionally picks up cruise ship passengers in a four-door sedan rented from a friend.

In February two hikers were robbed while hiking the jungle trails of Carambola Gardens. Until now no arrests have been made in that case. “The problem is that it has become lawless in the colonia [Balfate and Policarpo Galindo] and is out of control. It’s a haven for thieves and robbers,” said Bill Brady, owner of Carambola Gardens.

“Last year this time we didn’t any robberies and now Cruise Ship Companies are worried are about the increase in crime on the island,” said Lynettle Flores, owner of Agencia Naviera del Caribe, agency that represents majority of the cruise ship companies coming to Roatan. Harassment of tourists by local children has become an issue cruise ship companies repeatedly raised issue with.

Carnival not only brings estimated 48 ships to Roatan in 2008, it is also planning to build a $50 million two-berth cruise ship terminal in Dixon Cove. While the ground breaking took place in Dixon Cove in November 2007 and the delivery date for the cruise ship terminal is October 2009, no work has yet begun on the terminal. Some permit renewals are due with Tegucigalpa. [/private]

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