Six Costa Concordia passengers reportedly sue for $460 million

Six passengers on the stricken Costa Concordia cruise ship filed a complaint against Carnival Cruise Lines, the parent company of ship owner Costa Cruises, demanding $460 million in compensation, the ANSA news agency reported Saturday.

The lawyer acting for the six passengers, Marc Bern, said the legal action was launched Friday in a court in Miami, where the headquarters of Carnival Cruise Lines is based.

The action alleges that the ship operator was guilty of negligence, leading to the Jan. 13 disaster.
Divers recovered Saturday the body of a woman from the wreckage of the ship, raising the death toll from the disaster to 17, with a further 15 people missing. The woman's body was found on deck six.

On Friday, Costa Cruises reached an agreement with Italian consumer groups for an offer of at least $14,400 to be made to every surviving passenger of the incident, including children.

The payment will be made "to cover all financial losses incurred and assets, including those related to the loss of baggage and personal effects," according to a joint statement issued by Costa Cruises and several consumer advocacy groups in Rome.

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Costa Cruises also will refund the value of the cruise and reimburse passengers for the cost of returning to their homes after the ship crashed. It also agreed to fund a program of psychological counseling for passengers who need it.

Those payouts will see Costa Cruises provide some $52 million in compensation.

Meanwhile, preliminary operations to pump fuel out of the cruise ship were suspended Saturday due to bad weather. Workers with the Dutch salvage company Smit and Italy's Neri decided the sea was too rough to continue the salvage operation.

The workers pulled the barge serving as their operations base near the wreck of the Costa Concordia into port until the weather improved, according to the civil protection agency.