U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) reported on August 21, 2017, three crew members who had worked aboard a cruise ship have been apprehended.
A Cruise Bruise Investigation determined those crew members were from Carnival Cruise Lines’ cruise ship Carnival Fantasy. The crew “jumped ship” while the ship was docked at the port of Mobile, Alabama. Carnival Fantasy was in port at Mobile, Alabama on June 8, 12, 22 and 26.
The three cruise ship crew from Indonesia, were arrested in Arkansas this past week, after wandering around the U.S. for the past two months. They now face federal charges and deportation. Three other Indonesian workers who helped the three escape have already been deported.
As we wrote before on the Cruise Bruise main website, “U.S. Customs, says in one year, they caught 26 ship jumpers in America’s busiest port, New Orleans. That is 26 out of the thousands they say move invisibly into the nation each year. They say the gulf coast has always been the destination of choice for rogues, renegades and buccaneers. ”
Why are ship jumpers a serious issue? To abscond or desert a cruise ship is illegal for crew members. Proper immigration procedures must be followed.
According to U.S. GAO – Maritime Security: Federal Agencies Have Taken Actions, a January 14, 2011 letter written to Bennie G. Thompson, a Ranking Member Committee on Homeland House of Representatives, noted the following issues.
“The United States faces the challenge of balancing the need to secure its borders to prevent the illegal entry of persons while also facilitating legitimate trade and travel. In fiscal year 2009, maritime crew–known as seafarers–made about 5 million entries into U.S. ports on commercial cargo and cruise ship vessels. The overwhelming majority of the seafarers entering U.S. ports are aliens. Because the U.S. government has no control over foreign government seafarer credentialing practices, concerns have been raised that extremists may fraudulently obtain seafarer credentials as a way to gain entry into the United States or conduct attacks against maritime vessels or port infrastructure. Although there have been no reported terrorist attacks involving seafarers on vessels transiting to U.S. seaports, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) considers the illegal entry of an alien through a U.S. seaport by exploitation of maritime industry practices to be a key concern.
Screening foreign seafarers to identify those who pose security threats to the United States is a shared responsibility among federal stakeholders. For example, overseas, State Department consular officers screen seafarer applicants for non-immigrant visas–a prerequisite to be eligible for a permit to depart the vessel and enter the United States–and may deny a visa if, for example, they determine that an applicant poses a potential security or immigration risk. Within DHS, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), the unified federal agency responsible for border security, inspects all seafarers arriving from foreign waters to determine their admissibility into the United States and prevent illegal immigration at U.S. seaports. CBP obtains key support from the Coast Guard, the lead federal agency responsible for a wide array of maritime safety and security activities.”
On a Typical Day in Fiscal Year 2016 – U.S. Customs and Border Protection
- Cruise Bruise – Invisible Immigrants Cruise Ship Crew Member
- Mobile Alabama Cruise Schedule
- U.S. Customs and Border Protection Apprehend Crew
- CBP On a Typical Day
- U.S. GAO – Maritime Security: Federal Agencies Have Taken Actions
Video: Carnival Dream Crew Cabin