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Legal action planned over Euro 2008 arrests

Demonstrators who were arrested in Lucerne just hours ahead of last Sunday's group draw for Euro 2008 plan to take legal action.

Some 245 people were arrested and held in an underground civil protection bunker on December 1 after 800 people demonstrated in the central Swiss city over the closure of a cultural centre.

Protestors plan to lodge complaints against the police and the civil protection authorities, according to SonntagsBlick newspaper.

"The complaint is over the police's brutal action and the degrading treatment in the horrendous Sonnenberg lock-up," said lawyer Andreas Gschwend, who is advising the demonstrators.

Franz Riklin, a law professor from Fribourg, had already denounced the conditions of mass detention in the bunker and the treatment of those arrested, especially the "useless humiliating ritual" of forcing people to undress in front of the police.

The complaints will be dealt with by the departments of security for the city and canton of Lucerne.

The Lucerne authorities had banned the march because of the draw for the European football tournament, which is being held in Switzerland and Austria next year.

The protestors had gathered anyway close to the congress centre where the European football body, Uefa, was due to meet for Sunday's draw.


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