Italian prosecutors call for Costa Concordia 'captain coward' to be imprisoned

Italian prosecutors call for Costa Concondia captain to be imprisoned as he awaits appeal ruling

Francesco Schettino's case will be heard at the highest court in Rome

Friday, April 21, 2017

Italian prosecutors have called on the country's highest court to enforce a jail sentence for the captain of the Costa Concordia as he awaits the results of an appeal.

A total of 32 people died after the ship struck underwater rocks and capized near the Tuscan Island of Giglio in January 2012.  

Francesco Schettino was convicted of manslaughter, causing a maritime disaster, and abandoning ship before all crew and passengers had been evacuated during the disaster - a decision which resulted in the moniker 'Captain Coward' in the local press. 

He was handed a 16-year prison sentence in 2015, but immediately appealed the ruling. In addition to this, judges ruled he would not be sent to jail immediately out of fear he might flee the country.

This decision ensured he will retain his freedom until the appeal has reached a definitive end.  

Now, prosecutors have appealed to the Court of Cassation in Rome, who could either uphold the 2015 sentence or issue a new appeal order.

Deliberations on Schettino's case are expected to begin on May 12.