Arrest of Jeff Smiley III
SAN JUAN, PR—Special Agent in Charge Douglas A. Leff, of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) San Juan Field Office, announced the arrest of Jeff Smiley III.
On November 6, 2019, Smiley III was arrested by FBI agents of the Violent Crimes (VC) Squad and charged under a complaint with violations of Title 18 United States Code, Section 113(7) (Assaults within maritime and territorial jurisdiction; assault resulting in a substantial bodily injury to a spouse or intimate partner) for events, which took place at sea aboard a Norwegian Cruise Lines vessel.
On November 4, 2019, Smiley III assaulted a female passenger while in international waters. As a result of the assault, which was recorded on surveillance video and involved the victim being pursued through various sections of the cruise ship, the victim suffered a fractured jaw and arm.
On November 5, 2019 VC Squad agents, assisted by the U.S. Coast Guard, boarded the vessel as it was approaching San Juan. After collecting evidence, conducting interviews, and consulting with the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Puerto Rico, the subject was detained by the agents and held overnight by Police of Puerto Rico upon arrival at the pier in Old San Juan.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney (AUSA) Jenifer Hernandez and is being investigated by the FBI. If found guilty, subject faces a maximum penalty of five years in federal prison.
Tips and information assist the FBI and its federal, state, and local law enforcement partners. Citizens with information are asked to contact the FBI San Juan Field Office at 787-754-6000, or to submit tips through the FBI’s tip line available on our website at www.Tips.FBI.Gov. Tipsters can remain anonymous.
The public is reminded a complaint contains only charges and is not evidence of guilt. Defendants are presumed to be innocent until and unless proven guilty. The U.S. government has the burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.