CHESTER, England, Thursday June 29, 2017 – A Bahamian investigation into the mysterious disappearance of a woman who was working on a Disney cruise ship has been harshly criticised by a British maritime expert.
Officially, Rebecca Coriam, 24, was swept overboard by a wave off the coast of Mexico in 2011 while working as a child-minder on the Disney Wonder. Her family has always suspected foul play, however, because they maintain that there were no reports of rough seas in the area at the time.
Heat Street reports that it has now come to light that two friends who worked with Coriam on the ship later visited her parents at their home near Chester, England and said she had confided in them that she was scared of being raped or sexually assaulted.
Shortly after she disappeared, an official investigation was launched in accordance with maritime law, which states that if a ship is in international waters the case is the responsibility of the nation where the vessel is registered.
The Disney Wonder was registered in the Bahamas. At Disney’s expense, one officer – Superintendent Paul Rolle from the Royal Bahamas Police Force – was flown in to investigate. Rolle arrived with no forensic equipment.
Notes sent by the UK Foreign Office to Coriam’s parents indicate that her final movements focused on her relationships with two crew members – her American girlfriend and a man from Central America.
According to Superintendent Rolle’s notes: “(American woman in relationship with Miss Coriam) left to get more beer. Came back and Rebecca and (male crew member who was in a relationship with the American woman) chatting.
“She came back and all 3 went to (male crew member’s) room. (Male crew member) had sex with both. (American woman) left the room again to get beer. Came back and Rebecca and (male crew member) had sex.”
The Bahamian detective’s notes also detail how the male crew member had a “very nonchalant attitude” when being questioned. He was “laughing and joking” and police had to “give him a warning.”
The Coriam family suspect Rebecca died because she wouldn’t agree to an open bisexual relationship with the male and female crew members. They believe their daughter was sexually assaulted and that any sex she had outside of her lesbian relationship was forced, and not consensual.
Maritime expert Bill Anderson, who is working with the family, was quoted as telling Britain’s Daily Mail: “Everything has been covered up. Rebecca was a happy-go-lucky person with plenty to live for. The only thing that was upsetting her was pressure being placed on her to have sex with somebody she didn’t want to.
“But the investigation, by one detective from the Bahamas, and the carefree way they let suspects out of their grasp, beggars belief.”
Although the Coriam family is pushing for a new inquiry into Rebecca’s death, British authorities have said that the incident is not in their jurisdiction.