Mercoledì, 19 Settembre 2018

Schettino himself 'victim' of accident, says defense


Grosseto, April 15 - The captain of the Costa
Concordia cruise ship that hit a rock formation off the Tuscan
coast January 2012, killing 32, is himself the victim of a work
accident and has been made a "scapegoat", defense lawyers said
on Monday.
"(Francesco) Schettino made the mistake of relying too much
on the management of Costa Cruises and it is ever more apparent
that he suffered a work accident that cannot be criminalized,"
defense attorney Francesco Pepe told the court during
preliminary hearings for criminal proceedings.
"It is absurd to think that Costa (Cruises) are
considering civil action, especially now that their
responsibility in the matter has emerged," Pepe said.
William Gossard from the United States National
Transportation Safety Board who testified for the defense on
Monday told the court he thought that Schettino had actually
avoided a "Titanic-like tragedy".
"Mostly, the use of the 'salute' (the practice by cruise
ships of driving close to shore to greet onlookers) needs to be
questioned. There is a lack of clear rules prohibiting it. The
responsibility lies with those who allow it," Gossard said.
Grossetto prosecutors are seeking the indictment of
Schettino and five others for the cruise-liner accident.
Schettino is suspected of multiple manslaughter and
abandonment of his post before the evacuation of all 4,200
passengers and crew.
The disaster occurred after an allegedly rash manoeuvre by
Schettino resulted in the Concordia hitting a rock reef as the
ship sailed close to Giglio Island to 'salute' local people.
According to Italian media sources, a decision on his
indictment is expected later Monday.

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