VANCOUVER - It's been one week since a B.C. woman disappeared while on a cruise ship off the coast of Florida and her grieving family say they're still waiting to hear from the boyfriend she was travelling with when she went missing.
Fariba Amani, 47, disappeared on Wednesday, Feb. 29 as the Bahamas Celebration was travelling from Freeport, Bahamas to Palm Beach, Fla.
According to U.S. media reports, the woman was reported missing by her boyfriend, Ramiz Golshani, also from B.C, who shared a cabin with her on board.
Golshani reportedly told authorities he last saw Amani at 1 a.m. on Wednesday when she went inside a gift shop and he left for a casino. When he woke up she still hadn't returned.
Amani's sister, Saloumeh Amani of Maple Ridge, B.C., said while she has spoken with the U.S. coast guard, the FBI and even the president of the cruise line company, she has yet to talk to Golshani, who has since returned to Canada.
"He hasn't tried to contact us at all since his return," Saloumeh, 27, told The Canadian Press in an interview.
U.S. search and rescue crews trolled the waters between Bahamas and Florida for about 84 hours, covering an area of nearly 19,000 square kilometres. They also did air searches to try and spot the woman but failed to find her.
The disappearance doesn't make sense, said Saloumeh, because Fariba wasn't a drinker or a partier, wasn't depressed, had two children, and as an esthetician had clients and seminars booked for months.
"She had a love for life. She was very outgoing, very friendly and approachable."
The Canadian Press was unable to contact Golshani, however, he told CBC News that he has informed U.S. investigators about everything he knows and has been cleared of any suspicions.
"If I had any per cent of guilt, I would not be out," he said.
Saloumeh said her family has filed a missing person's report with the Port Moody, B.C. RCMP.
An RCMP spokesman declined to comment on the issue, referring The Canadian Press to the FBI, which has joined the investigation because Amani allegedly went missing in international waters.
Michael Leverock, a special agent with the FBI, declined to comment in an email to The Canadian Press.
"We are not releasing any information on the matter," he said.
The U.S. coast guard and customs officials believe Fariba was on the ship when it left the Bahamas on Feb. 28 because passengers must swipe a card to board the ship.
Saloumeh said the last week has been very difficult for her sister's children — a son, who's in his 30s, and a daughter, who is in her 20s, and the siblings are sticking together.
It's also been tough for the rest of the family who must now wait for an investigation to wind up.
"That's the most difficult part is waiting for other people to do something for you," Saloumeh said. "You can't help but want to do it yourself and to get out there and get involved and take care of it."