Elmhurst man accused of strangling girlfriend in international waters: Prosecutors

By Mark Hallum

An Elmhurst man was indicted Wednesday for allegedly strangling his girlfriend to the point where she passed out while on a cruise ship in international waters in a Sept. 8 incident, according to the Manhattan U.S. Attorney’s office.

Carlos Batista Jr. is accused of dragging his girlfriend down the halls of the cruise ship and into a cabin, where he allegedly strangled her until other passengers were able to get through the cabin door, according to the indictment.

Batista Jr. was charged with one count of assault of a spouse, intimate partner, or dating partner by strangling or suffocating, which carries a maximum sentence of 10 years if Batista is convicted, according to the U.S. Attorney’s office.

“As alleged, Carlos Batista Jr. assaulted his girlfriend while on a cruise, grabbing and choking her until she passed out,” Manhattan U.S. Attorney Geoffrey Berman said. “Thankfully others on the ship came to her aid. Now Batista is back on New York soil and must answer for his alleged criminal actions.”

Although the criminal complaint did not specify an exact location for the alleged crime other than international waters, the court contends that Batista is being charged under U.S. law on account of the alleged victim’s nationality as an American citizen.

Reach reporter Mark Hallum by e-mail at mhallum@cnglocal.com or by phone at (718) 260–4564.

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