Murder Mystery Cruise Promoted after Real Shipboard Murder?

After a Connecticut man disappeared aboard the Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines’ “Brilliance of the Sea” last month, the company has sent promotional literature announcing upcoming murder mystery cruises for 2006.

The man’s disappearance is no spoof. George Allen Smith IV was on a honeymoon cruise with his wife, Jennifer Hagel. Then he vanished midway through the cruise off the Turkish coast. While rumors abound, a passenger in the cabin next door said he heard shouting , and loud noises like throwing furniture overboard on the night the man vanished.

The case was first investigated by Turkish authorities. A Turkish prosecutor said that Hagel is not a suspect. She was released by the Turkish police after questioning. The matter is now being investigated by the FBI.

The FBI says the case will not be easy to solve, as there is an international list of passengers who have now dispersed, and a moving crime scene.

By the way, the headline on the mystery cruise piece is “Expect the Unexpected.” Certainly Mr. Smith was not expecting the cruise to be his last.