Sewol crew “drunk beer”

A Korean seafarer has admitted drinking alcohol while awaiting rescue as the South Korean ferry Sewol sank with hundreds of lives.

An engineer told the trial of crew members that he and a colleague drank beer in a hallway after the vessel started to list in April, the Chosun Ilbo daily reported.

"We took a sip to calm down," he added.

A relative of one of the victims, mainly schoolchildren, then asked: "Would you like a beer now, too?"

The crew maintain they thought it was the job of coast guards to evacuate passengers.

A total of 15 seafarers face a range of charges from murder to negligence.

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