The Captain of the Costa Concordia has appeared before a court in Italy, coming face-to-face with survivors.
The Concordia disaster, which took place in January 2012, near Giglio, Tuscany, killed 32 people and has led to wide-spread condemnation of the captain’s movements, including abandoning the ship before it was evacuated. He faces charges of multiple manslaughter as well as abandoning ship.
Schettino’s appearance at the pre-trial was his first since the night of the disaster. It was also recently announced that he has launched legal proceedings against Costa Crociere for wrongful dismissal following the company’s decision to terminate his contract.
“There is absolutely no intention on behalf of the captain to put blame on anyone,” said Francesco Pepe, one of Schettino’s lawyers when talking to reporters outside the courtroom. “It’s simply the case of getting everything cleared out and to get to the bottom of things in the best way possible but certainly without any sense of wanting to shift the blame from the part of the captain.”
The pre-trial could last up to a week.