London -Costa Concordia captain Francesco Schettino was not wearing his glasses when the cruise ship toppled off the Tuscan coast, leading to the death of over 30 people, it has been revealed.
According to leaked prosecution evidence, the shipâs first officer, Ciro Ambrosio, described how Captain Francesco Schettino had dined with a Moldovan cruise representative and dancer Domnica Cemortan.
âSchettino wears glasses when he is tired. When he took command on the bridge, he didnât have them because he had left them, in his cabin. He asked me to set the radar, as he couldnât see it properly,â The Daily Mail quoted Ambrosio, as saying.
âCemortan was on the bridge as well. She was speaking in English and arrived on the bridge the same time as Schettino. They exchanged a few words when they got on the bridge, then she stayed in the background and didnât speak,â he added.
Ambrosio slammed Schettino for his spineless behaviour ahead of the tragedy.
âThe captain told us not to tell the harbour master anything about what had happened. He said to tell them everything was under control,â he added.
The disclosures were made at the opening of a preliminary inquiry into the tragedy in January, which is being held in the Italian town of Grosseto.
Captain Schettino, 52, is under house arrest while investigators consider charges of multiple manslaughter, causing a shipwreck, abandoning ship while passengers were still on board and failing to communicate with maritime authorities.
Besides Schettino, first officer Ambrosio and two other crew members have also been placed under formal investigation. Three officials from Genoa-based Costa Cruises are also being interrogated.