Rescue divers and search teams have uncovered four more bodies from the Costa Concordia wreck, including the body of a 5-year-old girl.
Officials said that 32 people died on the cruise ship, but only 17 bodies have been recovered before the new announcement, bringing the total amount of bodies recovered to 21 since the ship sailed too close to the island of Giglio, crashing into rocks and damaging its hull.
Bodies of victims have been located. It seems there are four. The operation to recover them is under way, said spokeswoman Francesca Maffini from Giglio island.
Eleven of the 4,2000 passengers and crew who were on board the ship the night it crash remain unaccounted for, reported the LA Times.
The bodies were discovered in an area of the ship where survivors told authorities some people were unable to escape. A special platform was built near the vessel so that the search and rescue teams could retrieve the bodies and spend a short amount of time in the water.
The bodies are in a state of decomposition after all this time in the water, said Francesca Manffini, an official from the island of Giglio, reported BBC.
The ship's captain, Francesco Schetttino, remains under house arrest. He is accused of causing the shipwreck by steering the doomed cruise liner too close to shore.
He is accused of abandoning the ship during the chaotic evacuation before all the passengers were off safely evacuated. Prosecutors have been interviewing, passengers, crew, and authorities in order to determine who is ultimately culpable for the accident, reported the LA Times.
Officials are also concerned about the nearly half-million gallons of fuel aboard the ship. Two-thirds have been safely removed, but the operation to properly secure the fuel before it leaks into the Mediterranean Sea is still underway. Monitoring of the site has not revealed any signs of pollution.