A shocking audio recording has emerged today of a conversation between Costa Concordia’s captain, Francesco Schettino, and a Coast Guard official, Commander Gregorio Maria De Falco, painting a grim picture for the captain and possibly other officers. The audio was first made available on the website corriere.it and has been confirmed as authentic by the Italian coast guard to the Associated Press.
Schettino appeared before a judge on Tuesday and has been placed under house arrest. The captain could be facing charges of manslaughter, shipwreck and abandoning ship. Schettino’s lawyer however insists that the captains actions of maneuvering the vessel closer to shore after initially slamming into the reef “saved hundreds, if not thousands, of lives.” The captain could be facing up to 12 years in prison just on the abandoning ship charge alone.
Meanwhile, five more bodies were recovered in the stern of the ship earlier today, bringing the number confirmed fatalities to 11. The five victims found today are all said to have been passengers with lifejackets on. 24 remain missing.