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22 guests from Carnival Splendor cruise robbed in Mexico

Photo: A spectator watches as a tug nudges the Carnival Splendor the last few yards into port in November 2010, after the cruise ship lost power. Credit: Don Bartletti / Los Angeles Times
Twenty-two guests of the Carnival Splendor were robbed in Mexico last week while on a trip to see a nature trail after landing in Puerto Vallarta, the cruise line said.

Valuables, passports and other identification were taken from the guests during the Thursday port call. "There were no injuries and all guests returned safely to the ship," the cruise line said in a statement.

The tourists were part of a weeklong cruise that left the Port of Long Beach on Feb. 19 and returned Sunday morning, Carnival spokesman Vance Gulliksen said.

The cruise line has suspended the guided nature trail tour where the robbery occurred. "Carnival is working with guests to reimburse them for lost valuables and assist with lost passports or other forms of identification," the cruise line said.

"Carnival sincerely apologizes to its guests for this very unfortunate and disturbing event and is providing its full support and assistance," the Miami-based company said.

The Carnival Splendor ship generally carries more than 3,000 passengers, and operates year-round weeklong cruises from Long Beach.

In 2010, the Carnival Splendor lost power after an engine fire, leaving its passengers to spend four days aboard a dark, cold ship; passengers were served spam and hot dog salad after the electricity failed.

As of last fall, only one cruise line had decided to suspend stops in Puerto Vallarta, a popular port of call. That decision was made by Santa Clarita-based Princess Cruises, which is owned by Carnival Cruise Lines.

Carnival itself did not cancel stops on its namesake cruise line in Puerto Vallarta, and Princess Cruises was set to resume visits to Puerto Vallarta this month.

A port just north of Puerto Vallarta has received far more skepticism by cruise lines. After a February 2011 shooting left two dead in a parking lot of a hotel in the tourist area of the city of Mazatlan, several cruise lines began canceling stops, including Carnival Cruise Lines. Gulliksen said Carnival's cancellation of visits to Mazatlan remains in effect.

"We are working with local officials as the investigation continues and we do not have any itinerary changes as it relates to Puerto Vallarta at this time," Gulliksen said.

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-- Rong-Gong Lin II

Photo: A spectator watches as a tug nudges the Carnival Splendor the last few yards into port in November 2010, after the cruise ship lost power. Credit: Don Bartletti / Los Angeles Times

 
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