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Cruise Ship Sushi Chef Faces Life In Prison After Grand Jury Indictment On Brutal Rape, Hate Crime Charges

CHARLOTTE AMALIE — A sushi chef for Celebrity Cruises has been indicted by a federal Grand Jury charging him with brutally raping a fellow crew member while the cruise ship was at sea headed to St. Thomas last year.

A federal Grand Jury in St. Thomas on Thursday returned a two-count superseding indictment against Louie Ison Mangampat, 37, of the Philippines, charging him with one count of aggravated sexual abuse and one count of committing a hate crime, U.S. Attorney Gretchen C.F. Shappert said.

The indictment stems from Mangampat allegedly sexually assaulting a crew member on board the Celebrity Equinox cruise ship in September of 2019. The superseding indictment adds the hate crime offense to the original Grand Jury indictment previously returned on November 7, 2019.

Court documents indicate that on September 25, 2019 Mangampat was with several co-workers in a crew cabin at the end of their shift. He then allegedly forced a female crew member into the bathroom, locked the door and began “groping her against her active resistance” and finally raped her.

The victim, who has not been identified, managed to get out of the bathroom and ran to a friend’s cabin and reported the assault to the ship’s security, court documents said. She was brought to the ship’s infirmary where the doctor discovered blood and internal physical injuries she sustained during the attack.

Under federal law, Mangampat faces a maximum sentence of up to life in prison and a maximum $250,000 fine.

United States Attorney Shappert reminds the public that an indictment is merely a formal charging document and is not evidence of guilt. Every defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

This case is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of investigation (FBI) and the Virgin Islands Police Department (VIPD).

It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Everard

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