Cruise Ship Crime: 'He Raped Me'

Crimes on a Cruise Ship

When Darla and Enoch, who asked that their last names not be used, took their then 14-year-old daughter on an eight-day Caribbean cruise, the family never expected their dream vacation would turn into a nightmare.

After having trouble falling asleep one night during their 2009 Carnival cruise, Taylor said she left her parents' cabin and went alone to an upper deck of the ship "Freedom" to write in her journal.

It was there, she said, that Heri Krispiyanto, a 30-year-old Carnival cruise line employee from Indonesia who waited on the family during meals, found her and then raped her.

"He pulled me into an employee-only room," she said. "I asked him what he was doing and he told me that he was going to take care of me.

"He raped me, I kept saying, 'No,' but he didn't care," she said of the alleged rape. "He told me not to tell my parents, and he just unlocked the door and let me go."

After it was over, Taylor said she was shaken and afraid as she returned to her parents' cabin, but she didn't tell them what had happened.

"It's hard to say it," she said through tears. "My dad's birthday was the next day. It's too hard to say."

Having no idea what had happened to their daughter, Darla and Enoch continued to enjoy their vacation, as Taylor said she lived with the nightmare in secret.

"At that point, I just really wanted to die," she said. "I was angry about that, that had happened to me. We're supposed to be on vacation. We're not supposed to have to worry about somebody trying to murder us or rape us."

Even after returning home to Oklahoma, Taylor kept the incident a secret from her parents for the next three months until she became severely depressed.

"I had some thoughts about suicide," she said. "So I decided to tell my mom because I needed help."

After Taylor finally told her parents in August 2009, they were horrified.

"When that happened, I felt like there was nothing that I could ever do anymore," Enoch said.

A False Sense of Security?

While on the cruise, Darla and Enoch said they never worried about safety because they thought there would be security on the ship.

"You think about drowning," Darla said. "You go through the safety with the lifeboats and the life jackets. You think about being on an island and someone stealing your purse. When you're on a ship, you don't think about [sexual assaults]. You think you're safe."

Mark Gaouette, a former head of security for Princess Cruise Lines and author of the book, "Cruising for Trouble," said passengers often will have a false sense of security once they step onto cruise ships.

"There's a party atmosphere on a cruise ship," he said. "The passengers don't believe that there's any real issues or dangers to their safety until a serious crime occurs."

Gaouette added that cruise ships don't have enough security onboard.

"Sexual crimes are probably the No. 1 reported on cruise ships," he said. "The great majority of these crimes are committed by crew members."

When Enoch heard about his daughter's alleged rape, he called the FBI but, by then, Krispiyanto was back in Indonesia. Nine months passed before the FBI located him at a U.S. port, while he was working for a different Carnival cruise ship.

Charles Lipcon of Miami, a cruise ship litigation attorney whose law firm represented Taylor and her family, said when the FBI first interviewed Krispyanto, he denied any wrongdoing.

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