Grosseto, February 25 - Italian prosecutors on Monday requested the indictment of Francesco Schettino, the captain of the Costa Concordia cruise ship that capsized killing 32 people off a Tuscan island in January 2012. Schettino, dubbed 'captain coward' in the press, faces possible charges of multiple manslaughter and abandoning ship. Prosecutors also requested the indictment of five others including the two deck officers, the helmsman, and Costa Crociere cruise line Marine Operations Director Roberto Ferrarini. The Concordia went down on January 13, 2012 in Italy's worst maritime disaster since World War II. Schettino is suing Costa Crociere company for alleged unfair dismissal and writing a book aimed at explaining how he allegedly averted an even greater disaster. Schettino has apologised for being "distracted" when his ship capsized on January 13 after hitting a rock while sailing close to Giglio Island to 'salute' local residents, stressing he was not at the command of the ship. He recently told reporters he would "gladly return to the helm" of another cruise liner as commander.
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di Giovanni Pastore