A Royal Caribbean cruise ship passenger was arrested last week for allegedly hiding a camera in a bathroom and recording more than 150 people, including minors. According to the criminal complaint, the camera was hidden in a wall above the bathroom door that was under construction and was found by a fellow passenger who reported it to authorities on board the ship.
The seven-day Harmony of the Seas cruise set sail from Miami on April 29 and while in international waters the following day, a camera which was equipped with WiFi capabilities was placed in the public bathroom near a surfing simulator and a bar on the ship’s top deck. The complaint says that one day later, a passenger using the facility at about 7 p.m. local time spotted the lens poking out from the wall.
The Royal Caribbean crew was reportedly notified shortly after and found a memory card recording people in various states of undress, some of whom were entirely naked. According to the complaint filed by the FBI, roughly 40 of the victims appeared to be minors as young as four or five years old.
The man who allegedly placed the device in the bathroom was identified as Jeremy Froias after he was seen in the footage adjusting the camera to point directly at the toilets, the complaint says. It continues: “Froias is also seen taking his Apple iPhone 14 Pro Max out of his pocket and appears to have connected the phone to the hidden camera using Wi-Fi” before exiting the bathroom.
Froias was interviewed by security personnel who said he admitted to hiding the camera, telling them he knew it had been found because when he went back for it in the evening on May 1, he hadn’t been able to find it.
Royal Caribbean did not immediately respond to Gizmodo’s request for comment.
Froias was released to his wife after his bond hearing on Monday and was ordered to post a $25,000 unsecured bond. The court stipulated he is prohibited from having any unsupervised contact with minors, including his children, cannot have internet access, and is required to surrender his passport.
The cruise line said in a statement to CNN, “The matter was immediately reported to local and federal law enforcement, and the guest involved was removed from the ship by authorities for further investigation. As this is an active case, we are unable to share any more details at this time.”
The complaint says Froias has been charged with video voyeurism and “attempted possession of child exploitation material,” and the FBI is seeking to identify the victims in the video. “If you and/or you’re minor dependent(s) were victimized by Jeremy Froias or have information relevant to this investigation, please fill out this short form,” the posting says, adding the timeframe is between April 30 and May 1, 2023. Victims can fill out a form on the FBI website.