Lawsuit filed against Carnival, Fathom over Cuba regulations

By Tom Stieghorst 

Two prospective Fathom passengers filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Miami challenging not to allow them on a cruise bound for Cuba because they were born there.

Fathom argues it is conforming to Cuban law which bars anyone born in Cuba from arriving by ship.

Amparo Sanchez and Francisco Marty allege in their suit that Carnival violated their civil rights as outlined in the Civil Rights Act of 1964 by discriminating on the basis of national origin.

The suit, filed by the Miami firm Kozyak, Tropin & Throckmorton, seeks class action status.

According to the suit, Sanchez and Marty contacted Carnival separately to reserve a Fathom cruise. Because of their “heavy accents,” the suit alleges, they were asked their national origin and told they could not travel on Fathom because they’re Cuban.

The suit says Sanchez and Marty “have been denied full enjoyment of (Fathom’s) place of public accommodation while being discriminated on the ground of national origin.”

Carnival Corp., which owns the Fathom brand, said in a statement that “any such lawsuit on this issue is without merit or substance.

“It is our hope and intention that everyone can travel and we will continue to pursue a change in the regulation that puts cruising on the same footing as aircraft travel is today in Cuba,” the statement said.

The suit names Carnival Corp. and Fathom Travel Limited Corp. as defendants. It seeks a judgment “enjoining the defendants’ conduct,” and asks for a jury trial.

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