Captain of wrecked Costa ship contests firing

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Associated Press

Posted on January 30, 2013 at 6:02 AM

Updated Wednesday, Jan 30 at 6:30 AM

ROME (AP) — The captain of the shipwrecked Costa Concordia is in an Italian court today to contest his firing.

Francesco Schettino is challenging Costa Crociere SpA's decision to fire him after the Concordia ran aground off Tuscany Jan. 13, 2012, and capsized, killing 32 people. Court-appointed experts have blamed Schettino for the disaster, saying he took the ship off course in a stunt.

Schettino insists his skilled steering saved lives and that the reef the ship hit wasn't on his charts.

As Schettino arrived for today's closed-door hearing near Naples, he was asked if he thought he'd command a ship again. He said, "Yes, certainly."

A separate court will decide whether to indict Schettino on manslaughter and other charges.

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