Coast guard: Italy cruise captain spotted on land - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Coast guard: Italy cruise captain spotted on land

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GIGLIO, Italy (AP) -- An Italian Coast Guard official says the captain of the luxury cruise liner that ran aground and tipped over off the Tuscan coast was spotted on land while the evacuation was still continuing.

Coast Guard Cmdr. Francesco Paolillo says officers urged him to return to his ship and honor his duty to stay aboard until everyone else was safely off the vessel but he ignored them.

Paolillo tells The Associated Press "we did our duty" to remind Francesco Schettino of his obligation.

Authorities are holding Schettino for investigation of suspected manslaughter and abandoning his ship among other possible charges. According to the Italian navigation code, a captain who abandons a ship in danger can face up to 12 years in prison.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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