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Hooliganism on the rise, police say

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Hooliganism on the rise, police say
Photo: DPA
10:38 CEST+02:00
Violence and crime associated with football games in Germany's first and second divisions of the Bundesliga have reached a new high, a media report said Tuesday.

Police filed criminal charges against 6,043 fans of the country's 36 professional clubs last year, according to a new report by the ZIS central information post for sports operations cited by daily Neue Osnabrücker Zeitung.

In nearly one in four of these cases, physical harm was a factor, the paper said. The number of injuries that happened around games in both leagues rose to 784 – the highest number in 12 years. In the previous season there were 579 injuries.

Property damage, disturbing the peace and civil disorder were also frequent violations.

According to police officials, the circle of “violent, violence-prone or violence-seeking fans” has grown significantly, the paper said. They estimate that current numbers of such fans have reached 8,765, about 855 more than last season.

Meanwhile the number of working hours police spend at football games has reached its highest level in 12 years, up 15 percent to register 1.76 million.

These numbers would put the equivalent of 1,354 state and federal police on duty solely for football games, an expensive service for taxpayers, the paper said. The German Police Union (DPoIG) estimated that security at Bundesliga games cost €100 million in the 2009-2010 season.

DAPD/ka

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