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FBI Investigates Cruise Passenger's Disappearance

August 12, 2000

YORBA LINDA — The FBI is investigating the disappearance of a Yorba Linda man who was on the Carnival cruise ship Elation out of Los Angeles bound for Mexico, officials said Friday.

The FBI confirmed that John Conaty, 42, was reported missing at 2:30 p.m. July 31 while the ship was off the coast of Mexico. His wife, Marilyn, reported to ship authorities that he was last seen at 11:30 p.m. the day before.

Lt. Chris Schubert, a Coast Guard spokesman in San Diego, said crews conducted an 11-hour search with three flights of a rescue helicopter and scanned about 65 nautical miles southwest of San Diego.

A spokeswoman for Carnival also said that an extensive search of the ship and interviews with passengers turned up no information on the missing man.

"We even turned the ship around and retraced our course until nightfall, at which point we couldn't search any further," said Jennifer de la Cruz, the Carnival spokeswoman in Miami, where the cruise line is based.

She said Conaty's relatives disembarked from the ship in Puerto Vallarta and flew back to Los Angeles.

A family member had reported last seeing Conaty in the ship's casino. Conaty, his wife and other relatives were on a seven-day trip.

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