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Raped at a Holiday Inn in Montego Bay, Jamaica

Raped at a Holiday Inn in Montego Bay, Jamaica

In this week’s travel law article we examine the case of Robin Hutchings v. InterContinental Hotels Group, PLC. & SC Hotels and Resorts (Jamaica) d/b/a Holiday Inn Resort Montego Bay, Cause No. 1:17-CV-791 RLM-DLP (S.D. Ind. 2018) wherein the plaintiff claimed that the defendants “were negligent in failing to exercise reasonable care to protect her safety while she was a guest at the Holiday Inn Sunspree Resort in Montego Bay, Jamaica where she was allegedly assaulted and raped…Ms. Hutchings says in her complaint that while she and her now-husband…were guests at the Holiday Inn in Montego Bay, Jamaica, she was viciously raped at the Holiday Inn and tortured by three men who entered the women’s restroom and jumped into the locked stall she was using. Ms. Hutchings alleges that hotel staff and security didn’t respond to her cries and that the attack didn’t end until Mr. Hutchings heard her screaming, entered the restroom, and fought off the assailants”. Defendants’ motions to dismiss for a lack of jurisdiction were granted.

Terror Targets Update

Stavropol, Russia

In ISIS terrorist plotted bombing of local security service HQ in Russia, killed by FSB, travelwirenews (4/21/2018) it was noted that “Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) has killed an ISIS terrorist who plotted an attack on its local HQ and an administrative building in Stavropol. Agents recovered a firearm, IED components and an ISIS flag from the scene”.

Toronto, Canada

In Austen & Stack, Toronto Van Driver Kills at least 10 People in ‘Pure Carnage’, nytimes (4/23/2018) it was noted that “The killing began on a busy lunchtime thoroughfare in Toronto on Monday when a white rental Ryder van ran over a pedestrian crossing the street-then mounted a sidewalk and began plowing into people indiscriminately. ‘One by one, one by one’ said a witness who identified himself as Ali. ‘Holy God, I’ve sever seen such a sight before. I feel sick’…The driver’s action…appeared to be intentional”.

Arab Nations Are Next

In Callimachi, ISIS Spokesman Calls for Attacks on Arab Nations, nytimes (4/22/2018) it was noted that “In his first statement in 10 months, the Islamic State’s spokesman on Sunday called for violence against neighboring Arab nations, suggesting the group’s focus was turning closer to home. The remarks were a departure from the last pronouncement issued by the spokesman, Abu Hassam al-Muhajir, which aimed to incite attacks against Europe and North America. It comes as the group is retrenching in its core territory after losing all but 3 percent of the area it once held in Iraq and Syria”.

The ISIS Files

In Callimachi, The ISIS Files. We unearthed thousands of internal documents that help explain how the Islamic State stayed in power so long, nytimes (4/4/2018) it was noted that “How did a group whose spectacles of violence galvanized the world against it hold onto so much land for so long. Part of the answer can be found in more than 15,000 pages of internal Islamic State documents…taken together, the documents on the trove reveal the inner workings of a complex system of government (which) at times offered better services and proved itself more capable than the government it had replaced”.

Kabul, Afghanistan

In Mashal & Sukhanyar, Suicide Bomber Kills at Least 31 Afghans in Kabul, nytimes (4/22/2019) it was noted that “A suicide bomber killed at least 31 people on Sunday as they lined up at a government office in Kabul to register to vote, raising new concerns about violence undermining Afghanistan’s long-delayed parliamentary elections”.

Mont-Saint-Michel, France

In French tourist site Mont-Saint-Michel evacuated after man ‘threatens to kill cops’, travelwirenews.ocm (4/22/2018) it was noted that “Mont-Saint-Michel, a major tourist site in Normandy, France, has ben evacuated following reports of a man threatening to ‘kill cops’…Police sent to the popular tourist attraction after receiving several reports of the threat, and the island was evacuated”.

Paris, France

In Rubin & Schreuer, Paris Attack Suspect Is Convicted for Shooting at Police, nytimes (4/23/2018) it was noted that “Salah Abdeslam, who is believed to be the only surviving member of the group that carried out a series of coordinated attacks in and around Paris in 2015 and then Brussels five months later, was convicted for shooting at the police in the Belgian capital while he was on the run”.

Maarashtra, India

In 14 Maoist rebels killed in India after raid on hideout, travelwirenews (2/22/2018) it was noted that “Special units of India’s police have raided hideouts of Maoist rebels in the forested area of Maharashtra state. The encounter resulted in the death of 14 rebels…the police suffered no casualties”.

Nashville, Tennessee

In Gunman kills three, injures four more in Nashville, US, travelwirenews, (4/22/2018) it was noted that “Three people have been killed and four wounded following a shooting at a Waffle House in Nashville, Tennessee. A shooter opened fire at the Waffle House…Witnesses described the gun as an AR-15. A customer managed to take the rifle from the man, who was reportedly naked under his green jacket at the time. Police continue to search for the suspect”.

In Blinder, Romero & Bosman, Waffle House Shooting Suspect Once Had His Guns Taken Away. He Got Them back, nytimes (4/23/2018) it was noted that “He was once reported to the police in Illinois for stashing an AR-15 in the trunk of his car and then driving into a public pool wearing a women’s pink housecoat. There was the time he complained to an officer that the signer Taylor Swift had demanded a rendezvous. And then last July he was grabbed by the Secret Service when he tried to force his way on to the White House grounds…Yet even after the Illinois police revoked his firearms license and ordered his guns be transferred to his father, Mr. Reinkng got them back, including the AR-15 used in the Tennessee shooting”.

FAA Orders Closer Engine Inspections

In Wichter, F.A.A. Orders Closer Engine Inspections After Southwest Airlines Failure, nytimes (4/20/2018) it was noted that “The (FAA) on Friday issued an emergency order instructing airlines with the same type of engine as the one that failed catastrophically on Tuesday on a Southwest Airlines Boeing 737 to more thoroughly inspect the engines’ fan blades. The agency told airlines to perform ultrosonic inspections-which can detect flaws and cracks not visible to the unaided human eye-within the next 20 fays on fan blades of engines with more than 30,000 cycles. A cycle includes an engine start, takeoff, landing and shutdown…The F.A.A. said it was acting because it determined that fan blade cracking ‘is likely to exist or develop on other products of the same type design”.

Stay Away From Mexico, Please

In Is It Safe To Travel To Mexico, travelwirenews (4/21/2018) it was noted that “Mexico has hit the headlines time and time again, for all the wrong reasons. Last Sunday tourists watched as a man’s body washed ashore at Caletilla Beach in Acapulco, located in the state of Guerrero. Horrifying images show stunned beachgoers standing near the water as officials removed the body. On Thursday, 16 people-including six police officers-were killed in two confrontations also in Guerrero, during a bloody gun battle that lasted half an hour. The next day, gunmen on water scooters shot at a roving vendor on a beach in Cancun’s glittering hotel zone, an incident believed to be unprecedented for the Caribbean city”.

Travel Ban At U.S. Supreme Court

In Liptak & Shear, Trump’s Travel Ban Faces a Supreme Court Test, nytimes (4/25/2018) it was noted that “The Supreme Court will hear a challenge on Wednesday to President Trump’s latest effort to limit travel from countries said to pose a threat to the nation’s security. The case, a major test of presidential power, will require he justices to decide whether Mt. Trump’s campaign promises to impose a ‘Muslim ban’ were reflected in executive orders that restricted travel from several predominantly Muslin nations”.

Submarine Man Gets Life In Prison

In Danish inventor gets life in prison for torture & murder of Kim Wall, travelwirenews (4/25/2018) it was noted that “Danish inventor Peter Madsen has been sentenced to life without parole for the murder of Swedish journalist Kim Wall on his submarine last year. Prosecutors said that Madsen planned to kill the 30 year old by either suffocation or cutting her throat. Wall disappeared after she visited Madsen onboard his homemade submarine to conduct an interview in August last year. Her dismembered remains were found at sea 11 days later”.

Suicide Ants, Anyone?

In Greenwood, These Ants Explode, but Their Nests Live to See Another Day, nytimes (4/23/2018) it was noted that “Outside the kitchen door at the Kuala Belalong Field Studies Center in Brunei, on a number of tress near the balcony, there is a nest of very special ants. They explode. This colony was studied in depth by scientists who, last week in the Journal of ZooKeys, published an in-depth description of the newly named species, called Colobopsis explodens…When their nest is invaded, they rupture their own abdomens, releasing a sticky, bright yellow fluid laced with toxins on their attackers. Similar to honey bees that die after stinging, the exploded ants do not survive, but their sacrifice can help save the colony”.

Fire In South China Carex Bar

In Buckley, Fire at South China Carex Bar Kills 18, and Suspect Is Arrested, nytimes (4/23/2018) it was noted that “A fire that tore through a Carex bar in southern China in the early hours of Tuesday killed 18 people, the police said, and a man was arrested on suspicion of arson hours later…In addition to the 18 dead…five people rescued from the fire were hospitalized”.

Airline Ticket Price Bait & Switch

In Elliott, New legislation would make it harder to tell how much your airline tickets cost, savannahnow (4/19/2018) it was noted that “An old ticket-price tactic for airlines may make a surprise comeback, thanks to proposed legislation. Before a 2011 full-fare advertising rule forbade it, airlines displayed initial ‘base’ ticket fares online without including the mandatory taxes and fees. The FAA Reauthorization Act of 2018, introduced last week, puts that rule in jeopardy. The bill funds the Federal Aviation Administration, but is also used of other purposes, such as revising aviation rules and consumer laws. If Congress passes the act in its current form, it will give airlines clearance to quote an initial, low ticket price and then add taxes and fees before you pay. Proponents of the legislation say the act will ‘enhance’ the air-travel experience for passengers. But experts, consumer advocates and many passengers consider a rescinding of the full-fare advertising rule as a license for airlines to use bait-and-switch tactics”.

“Nut Rage” Sisters Need A Job

In Sang-Hun, Korean Air Heiresses, One Known for ‘Nut Rage’ Lose Their Jobs, nytimes (4/22/2018) it was noted that “Two sisters accused of abusing Korean Air employees will be removed from management positions in their family-run corporate empire, the company announced on Sunday, four years after one of them became notorious for an episode of ‘nut-rage’. The executives, Cho Hyun-ah, 43, and Cho Hyun-min, 35, have become lightning rods for South Koreans who say that leaders of the family-run conglomerates known as chaebol, which dominate the country’s economy, often act as though they are above the law”.

Electric Scooters, Anyone?

In Bowles & Streitfeld, Electric Scooters Are Causing Havoc. This Man Is Shrugging It Off., nytimes (4/20/2018) it was noted that “Travis VanderZanden, the chief executive of electric scooter company Bird Rides surveyed the new indoor park at his office one morning this week…Electric scooters have arrived en masse in cities like Los Angeles, San Francisco and Washington with companies competing to offer the dockless and rechargeable vehicles. Leading the pack is Mr. VanderZanden’s Bird with rivals including Spin and LineBike…The premise of the start-ups is simple: People can rent the electric scooters for about a $1, plus 10 cents to 15 cents a minute to use, for so-called last-mile transportation. To recharge the scooters, the companies have ‘chargers’ or people who roam the streets looking to plug in the scooters at night, for which they get paid $5 to $20 per scooter. The problem is that cities have been shocked to discover thousands of electric scooters have been dropped onto their sidewalks seemingly overnight. Often, the companies ignored all the usual avenues of getting city approval to set up shop”.

No Scooters, Please

In Sandler, People are vandalizing the scooters taking over San Francisco with everything from stickers to poop, msn (4/25/2018) it was noted that “Some activist residents of San Francisco are apparently so outraged by the sight of electric scooters on city streets that they’ve resorted to extreme measures, including literally pooping on them…scooters around San Francisco have become targets of vandalization…broken wiring, with stickers covering the QR codes that allow riders to unlock them, thrown into trashcans and, yes, even pooped on”.

Electric Bike-Sharing

In Ford charges into electric bike-sharing, travelwirenews (4/24/2018) it was noted that “The official bike-share of San Francisco, Ford GoBike, has gone electric. Ford GoBikes are already all over San Francisco, but starting on Tuesday, 250 electric-assist bikes will join the fleet for the same price-at least for now…Motivate, the bike-share operator behind Citi Bike in New York City, rushed to bring the new e-bikes into the Bay Area after a spate of other e-bikes and scooters flooded the market. Like its pedal-powered cousin, the new bikes require a dock. These aren’t jump-on and jump-off anywhere option, but you don’t have to worry about the docking the sidewalk or walkway, since the bike has a designated space. For’s e-bikes follow the trend from Chinese bike companies that have crept into the North American cities”.

India: Death For Rape

In India’s cabinet adopts death penalty for rape of girls under 12, travelwirenews (4/21/2018) it was noted that “India’s rape epidemic has shown no sign of dying down despite public outrage. India’s cabinet has approved the death penalty for rapists of girls below the age of 12, after Narendra Modi, the prime minister, held an emergency meeting in response to nationwide outrage in the wake of a series of cases”.

Scottish Whiskey, Anyone?

In Wesstuch, The Whiskey Chronicles, nytimes (4/23/2018), ir was noted that “a stretch on the wind-pummeled, rugged island of Islay off Scotland’s southwest coast that includes three time-honored, world-renowned distilleries that most Scotch whiskey drinkers would recognize by name-Ardbeg, Lagavulin and Laphroaig…Among the nations with a history of whiskey-making like Ireland, Canada and the United States, Scotland is by far the most prominent. In 2017, over 85 million cases of Scotch were consumed globally. Compare that to 44 million cases of American whiskey, and 28 million of Canadian whiskey and just under nine million of Irish whiskey, according to the Scotch whiskey Association, a trade group”.

U.S. Civil Rights Trail

In Glusac, Learning About the Civil Rights Era Through Travel, nytimes (4/20/2018) it was noted that “My experience, it turns out, is indicative of the current excitement surrounding civil rights tourism in the United States 50 years after the assassination of the movement’s leader, Dr. King. ‘It’s a part of American history, not just African-American history’, said Andrea Taylor, the chief executive of the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute in Birmingham, Ala…The institute is part of the U.S. Civil Rights Trail, which launched in January, and identifies 110 locations associated with Civil Rights history in the 1950s and 60s across 14 states. They range from the F.W. Woolworth lunch counter in Greensboro, N.C., where peaceful protesters staged sit-ins, to the house of Daisy Bates, an organizer of the desegregation effort at Little Rock Central High School in Arkansas”.

Free, Car-Free, At Last

In Mays, Central Park’s Scenic Drives Will Soon Be Car-Free, nytimes (4/20/2018) it was noted that “Mr. De Blasio said he had parkgoers…in mind when he made the decision to close the drives below 72nd Street to vehicles beginning on June 27, the day after public schools close. Those drives are currently open to traffic during limited hours. ‘This park was not built for automobiles’…’It was built for people’”. Bravo

Travel Law Case Of The Week

In the Hutchings case the Court noted that “[b]efore considering the merits of Ms. Hutchings’ claims, the court must determined whether it has jurisdiction. ‘A district court sitting in diversity has personal jurisdiction over a nonresident defendant only if a court of the sate in which it sits would have jurisdiction’. This is a two part inquiry, with the court first determining whether the forum-state’s long-arm statute allows the court to exercise jurisdiction and then determining whether exercising that jurisdiction comports with Fourteenth Amendment’s Due Process Clause. Indiana’s longarm statute extends personal jurisdiction to the outer limits of te Due Process Clause, so the two inquiries merge…’the primary focus…is the defendant’s relationship to the forum State’…Personal jurisdiction exists when each of the defendants has ‘certain minimum contacts [with the forum] such that the maintenance of the suit does not offend traditional notions of fair play and substantial justice’. ‘Stated differently, each defendant must have purposely established minimum contacts with the forum state such that he or she ‘should reasonably anticipate being haled into court there’”.

General Jurisdiction

“{D]efendants first argue that they aren’t subject to general jurisdiction because their affidavits show that they aren’t Indiana corporations and do no business in Indiana, aren’t registered or licensed to do business in Indiana, own no property and have (no) resident agent for service of process in Indiana. (Citing Daimler AG v. Bauman, 134 S. Ct. 746, 760 (2014)) ‘For an individual, the paradigm forum for the exercise of general jurisdiction is the individual’s domicile; for a corporation, it is an equivalent place, one in which the corporation is fairly regarded as at home. With respect to a corporation, the place of incorporation and principal place of business are paradigm based for general jurisdiction”.

The Subsidiary

“Ms. Hutchings also argues IHG PLC is subject to general jurisdiction because its subsidiary, Six Continents Hotels, Inc., is registered to do and does business in Indiana. Ms. Hutchings is correct that a subsidiary’s contacts with the forum can provide a basis for jurisdiction in some extraordinary cases… IHG PLC submitted evidence that it doesn’t exercise ‘an unusually high degree of control’ over it subsidiary; the affidavit it submitted indicates that the company exerts no control over the day-to-day management of Six Continents…The only evidence (Ms. Hutchings) submitted was IHG’s answer to an interrogatiory, in which it indicated that Six Continents Hotels, Inc. Is its subsidiary. That alone is insufficient to allow the court to exercise general jurisdiction”.

Specific Jurisdiction

“The defendants also argue that their contacts with Indiana are insufficient to subject them to specific jurisdiction in the court. To exercise specific jurisdiction, ‘the suit must ‘aris[e] out of or relat[e] to the defendant’s contacts with the forum’… The court of appeals hasn’t endorsed a particular test for determining whether a suit arises out of or relates to the defendant’s contact with the forum state, but it approved of the Third Circuit exercise of jurisdiction in an analogous case where a plaintiff brought a tort action for an injury that occurred at a Barbados resort when the forum contacts by the defendant consisted of solicitations and entry into a contract”.

The Website

“Ms. Hutchings argues that the defendants knowingly operated a website accessible in Indiana that allows users to book hotel stays and this activity amounts to sufficient contacts with the forum to allow the court to exercise specific jurisdiction. She contends in her brief that she booked her stay in Jamaica through and the is IHG PLC’s website”…In response…IHG PLC submitted an affidavit indicating that it didn’t own or operate the website IHG. To the extent Ms. Hutchings argues that SC Hotels is affiliated with the website, SC Hotel’s affidavit indicates that it doesn’t have a website that targets or markets directly to Indiana residents. Ms. Hutchings’s complaint doesn’t allege that she booked her stay in Jamaica through, or that IHG PLC or SC Hotels owns the website and she didn’t submit any evidence to support those assertions made in her brief opposing dismissal”.


“For the foregoing reasons, the courts grants the defendants’ motions to dismiss”.

Montego Bay, JamaicaMontego Bay, Jamaica

The author, Thomas A. Dickerson, is a retired Associate Justice of the Appellate Division, Second Department of the New York State Supreme Court and has been writing about Travel Law for 42 years including his annually updated law books, Travel Law, Law Journal Press (2018), Litigating International Torts in U.S. Courts, Thomson Reuters WestLaw (2018), Class Actions: The Law of 50 States, Law Journal Press (2018) and over 500 legal articles. For additional travel law news and developments, especially, in the member states of the EU see

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