Monday, April 7, 2014

Honduras: Filipino Crew Member, 27, Shot, Killed on Roatán Island

According to AFP, a Filipino crew member, Gavan Yaycob, 27, was shot and killed while ashore on the Honduran Caribbean resort island of Roatán.
 
The Honduran Tourism Institute said Gavan was a crew member of an unidentified cruise- ship that moored at Roatán earlier on Sunday (April 6) morning. 

COMMENT: Unfortunately, the media in Honduras did not identify the ship or detail the circumstances surrounding the shooting, which would have been most helpful to other potential crime victims in the future.

Although two million tourists visited Honduras' Caribbean islands last year, 50% of whom visit Roatán. 

Just because cruise-ship lines make calls on Honduras does not mean that it is safe to go ashore.  

To underline rising violent crime in Roatán, please see the below link from THE SEATTLE TIMES:

http://seattletimes.com/html/travel/2022806533_roatanhondurascrime

The US Department of State continues to warn US citizens that the level of crime and violence in Honduras remains "CRITICAL."

Since 2010, Honduras has the highest murder rate in the world. 

US citizens do not appear to be targeted based on their nationality, yet foreigners are targeted largely because of their being perceived as "lucrative" victims.

The vast majority of serious crimes in Honduras, including those against foreigners. Of the 50 murders committed against US citizens since 2008, police have only solved two homicides. 

Members of the Honduran National Police are known to engage in criminal activity, including murder and car theft. The Government of Honduras lacks sufficient resources to properly investigate and prosecute cases, and police often lack vehicles or fuel to respond to calls for assistance.

Kidnapping affect both locals and foreigners alike, with victims sometimes paying large ransoms for the prospect of release. Kidnapping is believed to be significantly under-reported.

For those who must travel to Honduras on essential business, I urge the following:  

1.  Stay only at an "all-inclusive" resorts if available;

2. NEVER, EVER resist an armed robbery in Honduras. Armed Robbery is a frequent occurrence, particularly for those who don't follow my advice. Honduran criminals will shoot you with no compunction. Once you're dead, there are no "come-backs";

3. Never walk at NIGHT anywhere in the country;

4. Never carry more than $100 in cash; 

5. Avoid wearing logos and apparel that identifies your country of origin; and

6. Don't carry a "smart-phone" worth $500-1,000. It is not worth dying over. Order an expensive "unlocked, quad-band mobile" like I did.