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Carnival probes security personnel's response to brawl in South Pacific cruise

Carnival probes security personnel's response to brawl in South Pacific cruise

"Members of my family are receiving medical attention at the hospital now". The lavish Barkho family home.

While some passengers defended the guards' actions, others said they behaved like thugs.

The scene was nothing like the last time the family were seen in public. Video of the incidents surfaced online Monday, showing several security officers kicking passengers after they were down on the floor.

One of the evicted members of the family held up a derisive finger in response.

"[It was] very violent, they were full-on attacks", said passenger Lisa Bolitho, who described the unruly passengers as being from the same "big Italian family". Video released of that fight show ship's staff battling passengers.

The police were, in fact, called to meet the ship off the coast of Eden, a couple hundred miles east of Melbourne.

The ship was forced to dock early, closer to Sydney than its final destination of Melbourne, and 23 guests disembarked (six men and three teenage boys were removed, while another 14, including women and children from the same family, also left the boat). No one was immediately charged, though Carnival said it's cooperating with authorities in their investigation. But the cruise line is already blaming "a large family group" for instigating the violence, which some passengers said escalated for days before security could contain it.

"I was watching the fight and one guy came up to me and said, 'Do you want to go too, bro?'" Bolitho told the Australian Associated Press.

"My mum had to drag me away from it all. They were roaming the decks just looking to pick on any Aussie they could find".

Several passengers reportedly locked themselves in their cabins in order to escape what became three days of violence.

Ms Bolitho also questioned the ship management's handling of the incident.

As a goodwill gesture, Carnival said, passengers who made it through the cruise have been offered a 25-percent-off coupon for their next one.

Passenger Kellie Peterson told radio station 3AW she saw a lot of injuries.

Some passengers are calling it the "cruise from hell".

In a statement to USA TODAY, the cruise line said it is investigating.

The company addressed the actions of crew members in a statement where they promised a full review.

"Our security team responded in several instances to extremely unruly behavior by these guests while the ship was at sea", the statement reads.

Safety is the number one priority for Carnival Cruise Line, we take a zero tolerance approach to excessive behaviour that affects other guests and we have acted accordingly on Carnival Legend.

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