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Heysel questions


SkippyjonJones

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what happened with Heysel with regard to their safety certificate, or lack of one? one person was given a suspended

but what about UEFA? it was their competition same as the FA Cup is the FA's competition

 

is it a direct parallel or am I missing something?

14 fans were convicted. that was good enough for UEFA. No official follow up. nothing done to , for or by UEFA. brushed under the carpet.

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14 fans were convicted. that was good enough for UEFA. No official follow up. nothing done to , for or by UEFA. brushed under the carpet.

I'm pretty certain there were UEFA and/or Belgian FA officials charged - state of the ground, ticket selling arrangements? And also someone from the Police? All in all, the Belgian Authorities took the case on. Whether you agree witht e vedicts or sentences is another matter, the system actually went about it in the right way,as far as I can recall.

 

* What were the verdicts on the 14? Did they serve any sentence? Were the 14 identified from the 30-ish images and videos published on TV - World In Action, iirc?

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I'm pretty certain there were UEFA and/or Belgian FA officials charged - state of the ground, ticket selling arrangements? And also someone from the Police? All in all, the Belgian Authorities took the case on. Whether you agree witht e vedicts or sentences is another matter, the system actually went about it in the right way,as far as I can recall.

 

* What were the verdicts on the 14? Did they serve any sentence? Were the 14 identified from the 30-ish images and videos published on TV - World In Action, iirc?

 

 

I'm not going to pretend to know! Its been a long while since I looked at this in detail and I think it deserves its own thread so that anyone with expertise in this can answer.

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according to wiki - 14 were done for involuntary manslaughter, the only offence for which they could be extradited

 

 

it appears none every actually served any time http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/2005/apr/03/newsstory.sport , which i didn't realise. Doesn't reflect well.

 

 

Bill Sergeant

Then: Detective Chief Inspector, Merseyside police, 46

Now: Retired

 

I am a Liverpool supporter and, with my son, attended the match as a fan. We had just entered the ground when the trouble began. It was some time before we knew what was happening and we were not aware of just how serious events were.

 

Our sector and the one occupied by the supposedly neutral fans were separated by a flimsy chicken-wire fence. There were, though, Belgian police officers on the majority of the steps between the supporters. There have been suggestions that the trouble was initiated by a single fan, but I am rather sceptical of that.

 

It is true that there were only a very small number of so-called Liverpool supporters involved. The majority remained where they were. We had to watch the antics of around 100 hooligans charging back and forth. I found this particularly frustrating because the Belgian police did not take the sufficient positive action required.

 

Because the spectators retreated so quickly (and I can understand their fear), the hooligans had a large area of terracing. The police found this difficult to cope with. I had seen many disturbances in England – usually following football matches – but I obviously never expected what resulted at Heysel. I am confident that British police – without riot gear – could have done far better. Indeed, 20 Liverpool doormen would have stopped it in very little time.

 

I then led the investigation. We had 17 minutes of film and still photographs to attempt identification of suspects. TV Eye produced an hour-long programme featuring the footage and the national press also published photographs. This drew a positive response and we then checked possible suspects against police records, undertook surveillance and searched homes. In some cases, unbelievably, we found items of clothing – that suspects could be seen wearing on the TV footage – hanging on lines.

 

We then made 27 arrests on suspicion of manslaughter – the only extraditable offence applicable to events at Heysel – of which 60 per cent were from Liverpool and the remainder from places that ranged from Aberdeen to Ipswich. Some already had convictions for football-related violence.

 

It was not, though, easy to convince the Belgian authorities (not the police) that this was the correct way to proceed. At one meeting it was suggested we should merely invite the offenders to go to Belgium. When I doubted such an invitation would be accepted, I was told this would not be a bad thing because the hooligans would be unable to visit Belgium for fear of arrest.

 

I was not convinced, though, that this was sufficient punishment and eventually the government made a formal extradition request. Why were they so reluctant? Maybe because Belgium was a small country completely unprepared for what had happened and there were murmurs about the inadequacy of segregation, the state of the stadium and the actions of the police. Unfortunately, there was no legal provision for extradition to Italy because I am sure it would have been dealt with differently there.

 

Even then, the Belgian legal process still allowed those arrested to return to the UK, which some people did even after they had been convicted and were awaiting sentence. To my knowledge, not a single person ever served his sentence.

 

My investigations never indicated any evidence of extreme right-wing instigation or co-ordination of events that night. The then Liverpool chairman, John Smith, had been quoted suggesting this. I interviewed him and he claimed he had been misquoted.

 

In my opinion, the tragedy resulted from a drink-fuelled aggressive response by Liverpool 'fans' to what they felt was unacceptable behaviour by Juventus supporters. They did not believe the Belgian police were protecting them.

 

We have moved on since 1985, with stricter segregation and all-seat stadiums. What a pity, though, that it took Heysel (and Hillsborough) to rid football of some of its serious problems. But, as recent outbreaks of racist chanting and post-match disturbances indicate, there is still some way to go.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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here are the sentences as reported

 

three years each, suspended eighteen months

 

plus...

 

six month suspended for head of Belgian Football Union

six month suspended for the gendarme in charge of that end, but not the one in overall charge

cases thrown out against UEFA officials and the mayor

 

£5m compensation due from convicted and Belgian Football Union

Edited by smithdown
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in my book, UEFA were solely to blame. I was warned some time before the match that UEFA had taken away all the tickets for one block and given them to Juventus. That is why the Liverpool and Juventus sections butted up against each other behind one goal while the other end was wholly Italian.

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in my book, UEFA were solely to blame. I was warned some time before the match that UEFA had taken away all the tickets for one block and given them to Juventus. That is why the Liverpool and Juventus sections butted up against each other behind one goal while the other end was wholly Italian.

 

 

That doesn't make UEFA solely to blame. The thugs who started and continued the violence (whether Juve fans, Liverpool fans, or thugs form elsewhere) were to blame. "Because I was next to them" doesn't justify that.

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I think Tickets for that section were made available for sale locally in Brussels, where there was a strong Italian presence which took many of them up - this was totally against the prevailing UEFA guidelines for segregation and methods of selling.

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What about the response of the Club and the City? I've seen it claimed we built bridges, but also others that they were rejected, or at least not accepted, by Juve/Turin, or 'too little/too late'. I know there is a comemorative plaque in the Museum, but do people feel that is enough acknowledgement, or suficiently visible? I do believe that anything too ostentatious would be highly inappropriate (as the home of the guilty party, and a long way from both the site of the tragedy and the homes of the victims - i.e. not somewhere they are lilkely to want to visit for any kind of closure - imo).

 

Does anyone know if there IS a legitimate Justice for the 39 campaign, supported by the Families? I suspect it is a cheap and callous hashtag used by trolls with no connection with or interest in the tragedy, or Italy even, (except to exercise their anti-Liverpool bile) but wouldn't want to challenge them on it in case there was (and not something set up with a Juve ultra as a front for stage-managed outrage; a genuine, victim-related group with articulated aims, which I would have respect for).

 

I know I could Google it, but not sure what vileness I might have to wade through first, or whether I could trust anything that looked legitimate.

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I don't think there is anything like the same thing in Turin about Heysel. Possibly because those who died were from a much wider geographical area, as Juventus's support tends to be. So there wasn't the focus on the city as a place where so many died.

 

In some reports I've read, plenty of blame is placed on the Belgian police, the authorities, and UEFA, as well as the Liverpool supporters who participated in the violence.

 

This perhaps isn't (or is?) the right time to go back over that, but I've always thought that we couldn't shake off the blame by simply saying the stadium shouldn't have been selected or the decision to give Juve part of the Liverpool end was horrifically wrong. It was our fans involved, and therefore the blame also falls on us.

 

The events of 2005 and the QF also suggests that we took far too long to make our apologies as a club.

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It was our fans involved, and therefore the blame also falls on us.

 

The events of 2005 and the QF also suggests that we took far too long to make our apologies as a club.

 

I'd agree. The actions of a small minority of morons, but some of those morons were Liverpool fans, and innocents died because of what they did. It stinks that the club can be shamed by their actions, but there it is.

Edited by honourablegeorge
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The blame for Heysel can be spread around without a doubt, but a group of fans decided to go looking for trouble and people died as a result of those actions.

 

In hindsight, Heysel should never have been chosen as a venue for such a game, it was a crumbling and decrepit stadium and the ticketing plans were wholly inadequate. I seem to recall that LFC had warned UEFA prior to the match that having a "mixed" section was asking for trouble.

The Belgian FA and authorities had to know that the stadium was in bad condition, and that they would need massive numbers of police and stadium officials to ensure that fans got into the stadium in an efficient manner. They didn't and Liverpool fans just walked into the facility without any kind of proper ticket check. Like many others, I still have my fully intact ticket.

 

I spoke at numerous meetings in the aftermath and had a personal sit down with Eric Heffer who was asking for information about what happened before, during and after the final. I don't recall that much happened after these fact finding meetings.

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One fan supposed to be extradited was serving time at home for something non-football related. After his release the extradition never happened and he was still a regular matchgoer.

 

I think there was only one who did any real time and that was for a bad attack on a Juve fan outside the ground, maybe after the game had taken place. I can't remember the sentence though.

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There are a couple of very good documentaries about Heysel which show how nearly all parties were at fault. Of course there is no excusing what some of our fans did and it was a dark day for the club. Juventus fans in general have not been too forgiving. The behaviour of some of their fans during the 2005 games showed as much, as did the reaction of some when Hillsborough happened. Idiots are to be found everywhere.

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There are a couple of very good documentaries about Heysel which show how nearly all parties were at fault. Of course there is no excusing what some of our fans did and it was a dark day for the club. Juventus fans in general have not been too forgiving. The behaviour of some of their fans during the 2005 games showed as much, as did the reaction of some when Hillsborough happened. Idiots are to be found everywhere.

I don't know whether you mean their behaviour in 2005 was idiotic or the reaction of some to Hillsborough?

 

That some of them refused to accept our collective apology in the 2005 match could be viewed as no more 'idiotic' than our refusal to accept The S*n's apology now. It's their right to decide if they accept it. I believe our apology was heartfelt and genuine. that it came 20 years after the event and only when prompted by the fact we'd drawn them in the CL may lead some to the conclusion that it wasn't entirely genuine.

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cheers for posting that, never seen it before, pretty tough viewing but important

Yeah I have only watched the first few parts so far but it is important for us all to be aware of the key moments in our clubs history. I was only born in December of 1986 so neither Heysel or Hilsborough were part of my life directly. I do think it is important for people of my generation, and those after me to educate themselves on subjects such as these because whilst reading about our famous wins is more pleasant, there is an argument to say that the tragedies have had a greater influence in defining what this club is and what it means to be a part of it.

Edited by Murdoch
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I'm just watching it now. I remember being in my godmothers house watching this with her and her husband. I was 11 I think and was shocked by how shocked her husband was. I guess I had no point of reference to such a thing.

It's a good thing to watch because the amount of people that mention "what about Heysel" and to be honest I'm quite muddy about it.

 

Watching this programme just reinforces how vital crowd control is. Things spiral so quickly, panic and confusion reign and a few guys kicking off can out of no where cause scenes even they would never have imagined or wished for.

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