A Sydney father who says he was wrongly accused of exposing himself to a young female passenger on a Carnival cruise, then beaten up by her father and interrogated by security before they noticed their obvious mistake, is now suing the company.
Passenger John Sun is taking legal action against Carnival Australia after the alleged incident on an eight-day return cruise from Sydney to New Caledonia in December 2016.
A statement of claim lodged with the NSW District Court claims that on December 10 onboard security was told a man had exposed and then touched himself in front of young female passengers.
According to the claim, security staff showed a particular girl photographs of Mr Sun, who was travelling with his wife and daughter, and the parents of the young girl were provided with details about Mr Sun and then found him in his room.
The court documents state that at 10.45pm, in front of Mr Sun's wife and daughter, the girl's father physically assaulted Mr Sun in his own stateroom and accused him of exposing himself to his child.
They also state that Mr Sun called security for assistance, but on arrival, they instead marched him to a room where they grilled him for one and a half hours.
The security guards are alleged to have stood in front of and behind Mr Sun. He felt he "was not at liberty to refuse the direction to accompany them".
"Security staff acting on behalf of the defendant and the captain accused the plaintiff of the conduct the subject of the allegations," the statement of claims says.
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Mr Sun was eventually shown footage of the incident and noted that, unlike him, the man in the video was not heavily tattooed.
After these "obvious physical differences" were pointed out, Mr Sun claims he was allowed back to his room about 12.45am but was not given medical attention for the physical assault.
Mr Sun claims he was fearful of further attacks and suffered humiliation and damage to his reputation.
"The investigation conveyed the imputation the plaintiff is a paedophile," Mr Sun's statement of claim states.
The Sydney father and his family, including his parents, remained on the Carnival Spirit following the incident.
He's suing the operator for breach of contract, misleading or deceptive conduct, defamation, unjustified or unlawful detention and negligence. He is seeking damages up to $100,000.
A Carnival spokesman told AAP the company wouldn't comment "while the legal process is in train".
The parties are due back in court on March 29 for a pre-trial conference.