The Ukrainian boat captain charged in connection with last May’s collision on the Danube has refused to waive his right to a trial. The prosecution on Wednesday proposed a nine-year prison sentence and a nine-year ban on piloting boats on condition that the accused admitted guilt and waived his right to a trial.
The accused today rejected the deal and refused to testify.
On May 29, the Viking Sigyn cruise ship collided with the Hableány sightseeing boat which had 33 South Korean tourists on board and a crew of two Hungarians. Seven tourists were rescued from the water after the collision and the rest died. One of the bodies was not recovered.
According to the charges, the captain was steering the cruise ship alone as it reached Margaret Bridge. He failed to attend to his duties for at least five minutes, according to the charges. During that time, his ship collided with the Hableány sightseeing boat and pushed it under water.
Ship Collision – Captain of Close-by Ship Placed under Criminal Supervision
The cruise ship’s captain has been charged with fatal negligence and failing to provide assistance to persons in danger. Those acts are punishable with two to eleven years in prison under Hungarian law.
featured image by MTI/Tamás Kovács