If there is a moral of this story, I suppose it must be, “don’t leave your lingerie in the captain’s cabin.” Not long after the Costa Concordia ran aground and sank off the island of Giglio on January 13th, there were reports of the ship’s captain, Francesco Schettino, being seen with a “mystery woman.” Described as young and blonde, the reports were variously that the captain was seen drinking with her, having dinner with her and that she was also on the bridge with the captain around the time that the ship ran aground.
The woman’s name is Domnica Cemortan. She is 25 and is from Moldavia. She is a ballet dancer and has worked aboard the Costa Concordia as an “international hostess” whose duties may have included serving as a translator for Russian guests. When the ship sank, however, she was neither working as a member of the crew nor was she listed on the passenger manifest.
She had just completed a six month stint working on the ship and was scheduled to get off prior to the start of the ill-fated seven day cruise. Coast Cruises now says that she bought a ticket and stayed aboard the ship as a passenger but had not checked into her room before the ship struck the rock and sank.
She had denied having a romantic relationship with the 52 year old captain, until her lingerie, other articles of clothing and a make-up bag were found by divers in the captain’s submerged cabin. She has now told Italian prosecutors, ”Yes, it’s true. I am in love with Captain Schettino…” Italian authorities consider Ms. Cemortan a witness but not a suspect in the criminal investigation of the ship’s sinking.
Captain Schettino, a married father of a 15-year-old daughter, is under house arrest at his home near Sorrento on suspicion of multiple manslaughter, causing a shipwreck and abandoning ship.