The tycoon's son, Gokce Atuk, has claimed that jewelry disappeared from the safe in his late mother's cabin.
A wealthy mogul who controls Tiffany's jewelry empire in Turkey died after falling from a cruise ship off the coast of Tahiti on October 26. Dilek Ertek—who has been Tiffany's distributor in Turkey for more than 20 years—was reportedly on her dream vacation in the South Sea Islands with her boyfriend when the tragedy occurred. The 71-year-old fell into the South Pacific Ocean from the Norwegian Spirit cruise ship and her body has not been recovered, reported New York Post.
The tycoon's son, Gokce Atuk, has claimed that jewelry disappeared from the safe in his late mother's cabin. Although CCTV camera footage from the ship shows that Ertek went overboard around 3 a.m., her unnamed 74-year-old boyfriend only reported her missing about 20 hours later.
Experts are unsure how a woman of her height, 5-foot-1, could fall off the 3-foot-high railing in her cabin. "It is difficult to fall from this type of passenger and cruise ship," Mustafa Can, a ship captain, told Turkish media. The crew had kept her boyfriend under observation until the ship docked in Tahiti three days after she fell overboard. Although he was questioned by the police at the family's urging, the man returned to Switzerland after being released due to lack of evidence.
Her body has not yet been recovered, and experts are reportedly stumped over the puzzle of how the 5’2” Dilek Ertek could have fallen over a 3-foot-high guard rail on the ship into the South Pacific off the coast of Tahiti. https://t.co/oiLsyKSQ0u— The Daily Beast (@thedailybeast) November 8, 2022
Ertek had boarded the ship in Papeete, French Polynesia, on October 24 and reportedly wanted to celebrate her birthday in Bora Bora on November 5, en route to Honolulu. Ertek's attorneys are now filing a lawsuit against the operator of the cruise ship while also arguing that is the responsibility of the country of Tahiti to continue leading the investigation into the circumstances of her death.
Tiffany's jewelry tycoon, Dilek Ertek 71, plunges to her death from #NorwegianSpirit cruise ship at 3am off the #Tahiti coast as it's revealed gems were stolen from her cabin - and her boyfriend took 20 hours to report her missing, Turkish newspaper #Sabah reported pic.twitter.com/lus4DYt4ur— 🌎 Sarwar 🌐 (@ferozwala) November 8, 2022
Meanwhile, a Turkish newspaper reportedly cited a local official speaking out about the mysterious circumstances surrounding Ertek's death on social media. "I find it very suspicious that the missing situation is not reported. Because on cruise ships, daily activities and entertainment are organized frequently and everyone is in contact with each other," he reportedly wrote. "People who cannot hear from each other inform the front desk and make an announcement. So it is confusing that the news of the disappearance is given 20 hours later."
Ertek opened the first Tiffany & Co shop in Istanbul in 1995. She had graduated from Mimar Sinan University's Department of Architecture. She also studied at the Gemological Institute of America in the Big Apple.
A spokesperson for Norwegian Cruise Line told The Daily Beast on Tuesday, "On Wednesday, Oct. 25, 2022, Norwegian Spirit was notified that a 68-year-old female guest went overboard while the ship was sailing in the Pacific Ocean on its way to French Polynesia. The authorities were notified and the United States Coast Guard conducted a search and rescue operation. The investigation is ongoing and we will share updates as appropriate. Our thoughts and prayers are with her loved ones during this difficult time."
Cover Image Source: Facebook | Dilek Ertek