Costa Concordia captain sentenced to 16 years for manslaughter
Monday, 16 February 2015 00:00
A helicopter approaches the Costa Concordia cruise ship that ran aground off the west coast of Italy at Giglio island at dusk in this January 19, 2012 file photo. An Italian prosecutor has asked a court to sentence the captain of the Costa Concordia to more than 26 years in jail for his role in the 2012 disaster that killed 32 peopleReuters: The former captain of the doomed Costa Concordia was found guilty by an Italian Court of manslaughter and sentenced to 16 years in prison for his role in the loss of the giant cruiseliner which left 32 people dead.
The 54-year old Francesco Schettino WAS facing as much as 26 years in jail for his role in the ill-fated ship.
He was at the helm of the cruiseliner in January of 2012 when it crashed on rocks off the Tuscan island of Giglio, killing 32 people on board.
Investigators had accused Schettino of bringing the giant vessel too close to shore, delaying the evacuation, and abandoning his ship before all 4,200 passengers and crew were rescued.
Schettino had always admitted some blame for the accident but not for the deaths that occurred during the evacuation.
The ship’s owners, Costa Cruises, a unit of Carnival Corp, had paid a 1 million euro fine and prosecutors accepted plea bargains from five other officials.
But Schettino’s request for a plea bargain was rejected and the former captain was left alone in the dock to answer for the disaster.