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Return of the football hooligans?


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http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/scottish-news/2009/09/07/return-of-the-footy-hooligans-86908-21654157/

 

http://www.pressandjournal.co.uk/Article.aspx/1384595?UserKey=

 

Cops warn 1970s-style violence is back

 

A top police chief has warned that 1970s-style football violence is in danger of making a comeback in Scotland.

 

Chief Constable Andy Trotter, head of British Transport Police, said his officers have reported an upsurge in trouble among fans this season.

 

Thugs linked to Hibs, Aberdeen and Celtic have been arrested for serious violence by the BTP just three games into the season.

 

Last month, a fight broke out on a train, during which Celtic fans started shouting sectarian abuse.

 

Police are searching for six men involved in the fight.

 

Other incidents include six Aberdeen fans who were singing racist songs and making Nazi salutes in Dundee and Hibs fans who ran riot through Waverley station in Edinburgh.

 

Trotter warned that Scotland could return to the days of running battles on the football terraces and gang fights among fans in city centres.

 

He said: "We have noticed a year-on-year increase in arrests across the country.

 

"We had some difficult times at the end of last season and the beginning of this season has also been difficult. We don't want to go back to the 1970s when the game was dominated by yobs."

 

Trotter added: "We in the BTP know that football hooliganism has never gone away."

 

Last year, 62 arrests were made by the BTP in Scotland for football-related offences.

 

Senior officers in Scotland's eight police areas agreed that hooliganism was on the rise this season.

 

A spokesman for the Association of Chief Police Officers in Scotland said: "Disorder and violence at football matches is unacceptable and will not be tolerated.

 

"While there is no evidence of a large-scale problem of orchestrated football violence involving organised gangs in Scotland, we're still concerned when football is blighted by those out to spoil the enjoyment of others.

 

"Police officers up and down the country are in constant touch, sharing intelligence about football matches and any threat to public order."

 

Fans groups have also raised concerns about the return of football hooligans.

 

Hamish Husband, of the Association of Tartan Army Clubs, said: "This is a subculture of people who have little knowledge of football.

 

"They don't wear team colours and they're not interested in the team's performance.

 

"The fights have become easier with the advent of the internet and mobile phones."

 

Scots fans gained a reputation for violence in the 1970s after rioting between Old Firm fans.

 

In the 1980s, the problem continued with the rise of "casual" gangs. They didn't wear club colours and co-ordinated battles with rival "firms" using mobile phones.

 

 

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Whilst I don't wanna try making excuses for this sort of action ...

 

Thugs linked to Hibs, Aberdeen and Celtic have been arrested for serious violence by the BTP just three games into the season . . . incidents include six Aberdeen fans who were singing racist songs and making Nazi salutes in Dundee

 

The Record is saying the reported incidents have happened in the opening three games of the season. Erm, excuse me but we've not played in Dundee yet.

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