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Three people were arrested this Tuesday, May 23 in Valencia, in the framework of an investigation for racist insults against the Brazilian forward of Real Madrid Vinícius Júnior during a league match played on Sunday. Four other people also ended up arrested for hanging a mannequin of the player last January.
First arrests in Spain. Seven people were arrested on Tuesday May 23 after two racist incidents against Real Madrid striker Vinícius Júnior.
Four people were arrested as part of the investigation into the hanging of a mannequin in Madrid at the end of January, while another three are suspected of having used racist insults against the player during a match of the Spanish soccer championship against Valencia, insults that sparked a wave of outrage at home and abroad.
“The police arrested three young people in Valencia today for racist behavior that occurred on Sunday during the match between Valencia and Real Madrid,” the police said.
A regular target of racist attacks since his arrival in the Spanish capital in 2018, Vinícius Júnior received insults and monkey yells during this match scoring for round 35 of La Liga.
The attacks, denounced by the player and by Real Madrid, led the Valencian Community Prosecutor’s Office, in the southeast of the country, to open an investigation for “hate crime”, a criminal category that includes racist crimes in Spain.
Images of the match analyzed
The Spanish Higher Sports Council (CSD) reported that it was analyzing the images to “identify the perpetrators of these insults and behaviors in order to propose the appropriate sanctions.”
In the morning, four people were arrested in the Spanish capital in the framework of the investigation into the hanging of a mannequin with the image of the player in Madrid at the end of January. Three of them are “active members of an ultra group of supporters of a Madrid club,” police said without identifying the club.
A malicious and disgusting racist and xenophobic act
The mannequin with Vinícius Júnior’s shirt was found hanged on January 26, the day of Real Madrid’s 3-1 victory in the derby against Atlético de Madrid in the quarterfinals of the Copa del Rey, under a banner on the which read “Madrid hates Real”.
Following the incident, Real Madrid denounced a “malicious and disgusting racist and xenophobic act” against their 22-year-old player, stating in a statement that they expected the “perpetrators” to be “punished”. An investigation was opened as a result of the incident.
The investigation, based on witness statements, determined that these four fans, “identified during matches classified as high risk” within the framework of the “prevention of violence in sport”, were the “alleged perpetrators” of the hanging of the doll said the police.
“The League has a racism problem”
The day before, the Valencia Prosecutor’s Office (southeast), where the Brazilian star was insulted on May 21 during a league match lost by the Merengue club against the local team (1-0), officially opened investigation proceedings for an alleged “hate crime”, reported judicial sources.
In the report sent to the competent authorities as every week, La Liga assured on Monday night that it had “clearly” identified racist insults.
The Higher Sports Council (CSD) indicated that it is analyzing the images to identify “the authors of these insults and behaviors to propose the corresponding sanctions.”
The CSD also recalled that, for similar acts of racism, it has already proposed this season a fine of 4,000 euros and a one-year ban on access to stadiums for the perpetrators.
In statements to the press, the president of the Spanish Football Federation (RFEF), Luis Rubiales, acknowledged that Spanish football has “a problem of racism”.
This article was adapted from its original in French
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