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Atlantis Cruise Passengers Arrested for Gay Sex in Dominica

Two gay men aboard an Atlantis Cruise ship docked in Dominica have been arrested, the AP reports:

DominicaPolice Constable John George said the men, ages 41 and 43, were arrested on suspicion of indecent exposure and “buggery,” a term equivalent to sodomy on the island. They have not been charged. The men were seen having sex on the Celebrity Summit cruise ship by someone on the dock, George said....

...President Rich Campbell, who is aboard the cruise, said in a phone interview that the two men were still being questioned as of Wednesday afternoon.

“We’re waiting to see what happens,” he said. “They’re due to arrive back fairly soon.”

The cruise, carrying 2,000 passengers, arrived today in Dominica from Puerto Rico.

The incident is the second headline-making incident for Atlantis in the Caribbean since New Years. In February, the tour company was in the news after a passenger went overboard off of Cozumel, Mexico.

More from local media outlet Dominica News:

One individual with information on the matter told DNO that “they were informed of the laws of Dominica and they were well aware that their acts would be considered a criminal offence”. Police Chief Cyrille Carrette has confirmed that  two males from California, John Robert Hart and Dennis Jay Mayer, have been charged with buggery and indecent exposure and are expected to appear in court on Thursday morning

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Comments

  1. The idiot in that story is the president of Atlantis, who said, "Many countries and municipalities that gay men visit and live in have antiquated laws on their books. These statutes don't pose a concern to us in planning a tourist visit."

    His response should have been outrage.

    Posted by: Jeff NYC | Mar 21, 2012 8:35:56 PM


  2. "being gay is not a crime but having sex in public is no matter who you are."

    Berry, it is not at all equal for everyone as you make it sound in your comment.

    Dominica's Sexual Offenses Act of 1998 threatens FIVE YEARS in prison any use of the sexual organs for arousal other than for intercourse to be "gross indecency."
    However, another clause says that "Subsection (1) does not apply to gross indecency committed in private between an adult male and an adult female, both of whom consent."

    Obviously, gay people in Dominica are threatened by invasive laws that do not apply to heterosexuals.

    @Huh?: This happened in Dominica, not the Dominican Republic. They are neighbors which have confusing names but are different countries.

    I agree with others here that not only gay cruises but all cruise companies as well as travel agents should stop promoting tourism (for straights and gays alike) to islands with laws that threaten the security of any minority group. Cruise ship companies are not well known for having any kind of moral spine, though.

    Posted by: GregV | Mar 21, 2012 8:47:27 PM


  3. If it was a gay cruise and it stopped in a country that is anti gay, then it's time to look for another Cruise Ship to do business with. That doesn't make sense.

    Posted by: Macmantoo | Mar 21, 2012 9:10:48 PM



  4. For God's sake, many of the especially former British colony islands have very Victorian attitudes and laws regarding homosexuality [i.e. sodomy,buggery]. Just be aware of this if you choose to visit.

    Posted by: ratbastard | Mar 21, 2012 9:23:50 PM


  5. The two men were seen having sex on their bedroom balcony, which was viewed by hundreds on the city front.

    Posted by: Love Dominica | Mar 21, 2012 9:31:57 PM


  6. Stephen, let me spell it out for you. These rooms have windows, and curtains. Either they were gettin' frisky on the price deck of their room, or they were having sex in their room with the window open. This isn't difficult to understand. They were charged with indecent exposure, after all.

    You don't get charged with indecent exposure for having sex in your room with the curtains drawn, Stephen.

    You get your kicks by having sex in view of the public? Fine, but don't do it on an island where it's illegal. And if you booked a gay cruise that stops in gay-unfriendly locales, SHAME ON YOU, moron.

    Posted by: theo | Mar 21, 2012 9:36:51 PM


  7. I think a same-sex kiss in Domenica probably counts as sex or buggery. Those poor guys weren't even getting off (the boat or figuratively). The police came aboard. Which one of you "they shoulda known betters" would not kiss there lover on the balcony of a cruise line especially when you didn't intend to go into the port?
    I will never take an Atlantis cruise. The lack of support from the president is frightening.

    Posted by: Markt | Mar 21, 2012 9:40:07 PM


  8. We also don't know what is accepted as evidence in a court of law in Dominica, or what evidence would persuade a jury. Of course, in the U.S., Larry Craig was arrested for an act of communication in a bathroom stall. He didn't even flash his weiner at the decoy. (Yes, I detest him but he was railroaded by the cops.) How many times have we heard of gay or bi men being arrested for public sex when it was assumed they had public sex and not witnessed? (Cruisy parks, adult bookstores, etc.)

    So basically, they could have embraced on their balcony and a witch hunt could have been pursued.

    Posted by: Angela Channing | Mar 21, 2012 9:52:05 PM


  9. They were probably being intimate on their balcony (if it really happened). Anyway shame on Atlantis for saying they would come back to Dominica. I do wonder if Atlantis issued warnings that it was a anti-gay island.

    Posted by: Billy | Mar 21, 2012 10:00:23 PM


  10. Why would a cruise targeted at gay couples and singles dock in a homophobic country where the entire ship's population would be "in violation of criminal laws?"

    Posted by: Uh duhhhhh | Mar 21, 2012 10:41:03 PM


  11. With all the islands of the Caribbean available to it, why does Atlantis Cruises insist on giving business to a backassward god forsaken island as this? I suppose if Iran were a Caribbean island, they'd be on the Atlantis Cruise itinerary, too, if the price was right.

    Posted by: My2cents | Mar 21, 2012 11:03:22 PM


  12. I went on a Celebrity cruise that stopped on Dominica- it is truly a backwater place. We as a community should insist that Celebrity (RCCI) boycott that island entirely, for all cruises, until they repeal these laws. RCCI gets millions of dollars from us and I imagine that the docking fees are a substantial part of the island economy. (We should also insist that the cruise companies pay a few more dollars in docking fees and go to less disgusting places.)

    After another island's Calvinist churchgoers picketed Atlantis, (Grand Cayman, I think) there was a hue and cry, and Royal Caribbean stopped going there entirely. Within two years there were banners welcoming Atlantis back.

    Not sure that Rich Campbell is anybody's statesman for an international fracas, whether it's a drug related death, a drug arrest, a suicide, etc. (Hillary Clinton's state department on the otherhand will make quick work of this.) Sadly, Atlantis has one PR nightmare after another and way too many fatalities per capita. Some feel that Campbell's responses are a little tone deaf and basically what one would expect from a party boy. I wish our community had a more credible ambassador on the world stage.

    Posted by: Rob | Mar 21, 2012 11:07:12 PM


  13. The article CLEARLY states they were charged with "indecent exposure" and the sodomy charges were dropped.

    Posted by: MarkUs | Mar 21, 2012 11:10:15 PM


  14. Neither article says these men were in public, or had expected to be viewed by others where they were. Why were people on the dock violating the privacy of people on the ship? The articles suggest that people were offended that only men were disembarking the ship, and gathered around to stare at the ship. Seems like the wrong people may be charged with crime.

    Atlantis Events President Rich Campbell: “Many countries and municipalities that gay men visit and live in have antiquated laws on their books,” he said. “These statutes don’t pose a concern to us in planning a tourist visit.”

    And that's why I'll never book a cruise with them. It's not only a risk to me, but supporting bad countries, and bad people.

    Posted by: Randy | Mar 21, 2012 11:52:05 PM


  15. Rich Campbell has announced that he is returning to Dominica. He is apparently unconcerned with the fact that being Gay is illegal in Dominica. He is endangering his clients. His Baltic cruise will stop in St Petersburg Russia on July 28 and 29. St Petersburg just passed a very anti-Gay law and violence against Gays is common there. The Gay community in St Petersburg has asked Gay tourists to stay away. The Canadian Government has issued an official travel warning regarding Gay tourists to St Petersburg. Rich Campbell is apparently planning on endangering his passengers once again.

    I was on the Atlantis Southern Carribean Cruise last year (my last event with Atlantis). We stopped in St Lucia, a nation where being Gay is illegal. No warning was given that I saw from either Atlnatis or the cruise operator.

    Really Rich, they march onto the ship and arrest people for the 'crime' of being Gay and you're willing to risk your clients safety again? WTF?

    Posted by: Tom in Lazybrook | Mar 21, 2012 11:54:21 PM


  16. I go on at least one cruise a year and when you "dock" at port these places can be like parking lots for ships. There are many people going back and forth to their vessels. If someone is having sex on their balcony it's going to be very visable.... and you know there's kids walking with families. While I'm sure the local authorities had themselves some fun enforcing the laws, and we don't like to hear it, the guys were sorta asking for it.

    Posted by: MiamiMike | Mar 22, 2012 12:06:50 AM


  17. The morons in Dominica can't even feed themselves or control violence on their cesspool island, and they're worrying about a boy liking another boy or a girl liking another girl? LOL. You'd think they'd spend their scant resources on something more productive. Homosexuals around the world need to start taking WHATEVER actions are necessary to secure their human rights. It is patently unfair that gays and their families suffer from the devastating effects of discrimination, while the bigots leave their lives as if nothing has happened. Bigots need to be made to pay for their discriminatory actions. And shame on Celebrity Cruises and Atlantis for giving support to such a disgusting, backward society like Dominica or letting Dominican authorities on board the ship. And by the way, if those gay Americans are sent to jail, the judge, jailers, and politicians (and their families) that send them there, and Randy Rodney, should be attacked and people all over the world should attack Dominica citizens in their countries. Start with embassy personnel.

    Posted by: rob | Mar 22, 2012 12:11:26 AM


  18. Taking out the question if Atlantis should even be stopping in Dominica in the first place (and their cruises are becoming known for "incidents"), perhaps Rich Campbell is trying to deescalate the situation if their release is imminent. We won't know what really happened until the ship returns stateside.

    Posted by: Angela Channing | Mar 22, 2012 12:12:24 AM


  19. After reading the story from the Dominica new site, I can see that this was in the news there, and generating controversy, before the ship even arrived. An all-male ship with all-male homosexual passengers will be arriving at the docks with just men on board, all of whom are male!
    It sounds like anti-gay activists who, you know, "don't want to see homosexuals," organized themselves to show up at the docks to watch the excitement as the all-male ship with men who were all malesstrolled on the decks and walked onto the docks.
    The accusations sound very suspicious to me. I suspect that the over-excitable onlookers who came looking for a peep show were eager to look for something to report. Ah-hah! Two men in an embrace on a balcony! It's practically buggery! Let's call the police!
    I mean, MAYBE they were having sex, but the news story does not include any real details suggesting that anyone reliable has agreed that they were doing so.
    And I don't trust the police or court system on an island where the law specifically stipulates that what is perfectly legal for a hetero couple results in 5 years in prison for a gay couple.

    Posted by: GregV | Mar 22, 2012 1:02:31 AM


  20. "It is wrong in most if not all societies to have sex publicly"

    You assume that they were having public sex. In a country like Dominica, as others have pointed out, it is simply a matter of being perceived as gay that puts one in danger or at risk of being arrested for "buggery".

    Posted by: RJS | Mar 22, 2012 1:06:43 AM


  21. Well according to this little article on Dominica online, they're not going to charge the men with buggery because it's too time consuming. I'm going to translate that to mean they probably don't have a case & the witness is someone like the hysterical hair braider. Lots of comments from the Island people on there from abomination to live and let live.

    http://dominicanewsonline.com/news/all-news/general/udpate-gay-cruise-ship-docks-in-dominica-two-passengers-arrested-for-buggery-indecent-exposure/

    Posted by: sara | Mar 22, 2012 1:26:13 AM


  22. St. Croix is not the most gay friendly place. Depends which half of the island you're on. St. John, much better.

    Posted by: Paul R | Mar 22, 2012 1:27:56 AM


  23. Butt, butt, butt ... Fecal sex is so much fun!!!

    Posted by: BO the BFer | Mar 22, 2012 1:49:13 AM


  24. The news report I just saw, and read elsewhere, confirmed they were not "in public" but in their room on the ship, but the shade to their room was not drawn, so the interior of their private room was visible publicly from the dock. They were not on deck, or in a public area.

    Posted by: Epi | Mar 22, 2012 2:09:30 AM


  25. Endo, it doesn't say they were having sex in public, but it also doesn't say they weren't. There is amazingly little information about this incident to be causing such 'sturm und drang'. Let's get the facts and then decide.

    Posted by: JHR459 | Mar 22, 2012 3:28:21 AM


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