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Football hooliganism FC Sion football fans convicted over Neuchâtel riots

FC Sion forward Yassin Fortune at the Neuchatel Xamax FC v FC Sion match

FC Sion forward Yassin Fortune at the Neuchatel Xamax FC v FC Sion match on October 7, 2018 in Neuchatel

(© Keystone / Jean-christophe Bott)

Some 52 FC Sion football supporters have been sentenced for rioting at an FC Neuchâtel Xamax-FC Sion match in the Swiss city of Neuchâtel on October 7, 2018. 

The Neuchâtel prosecutor’s office and police said on Monday that individuals had received fines of up to CHF10,000 ($9,987), depending on their income. Certain repeat offenders and well-known hooligans had received heavy fines.

The incidents occurred when around 200 out of 800 visiting Sion fans gathered at the end of the match to provoke opposing supporters. Police managed to intervene to prevent clashes.

The Sion fans were ordered to leave the area, but many refused and later clashed with police, who used rubber bullets to disperse the crowd. Those responsible were later identified using video technology.

Hooliganism is a persistent problem at Swiss football matches and to a lesser extent at ice hockey games.

According to a report by the SonntagsZeitung last October, over the previous six months one out of three football matches and one out of ten ice hockey games witnessed violent incidents. Most incidents occur outside stadiums. Flares are lit and material damage reported at half of all games, the report said.

Keystone SDA/sb

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