Amsterdam police deport England fans

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The Independent Online
DUTCH POLICE last night deported 30 English football fans arrested after a night of drunkenness and violence in Amsterdam ahead of the important World Cup football match between the Netherlands and England tomorrow, writes David Connett.

A total of 39 fans were arrested after up to 50 started attacking passers-by, cyclists and motorcyclists in the Damrak area in the city centre. Eight are expected to face assault charges. Police said they will appear before a Dutch public prosecutor either tomorrow or on Thursday, and would be held in custody until then. They were arrested in the early hours of Monday morning for allegedly kicking and beating a passer-by with a wooden stick. They are also alleged to have threatened others with a knife.

The 30 deportees were to travel on the overnight ferry to Harwich, accompanied by Dutch police and civilian security staff. Essex police said if fans behaved on the ferry they would be allowed to go straight home.

About 5,000 England fans are expected in Rotterdam for the World Cup qualifying match. Dutch authorities, fearing clashes with local hooligans, have promised to take a hard line in the event of further trouble.

British officers will be in Rotterdam to record details of offenders. These could then be passed to American authorities, who may subsequently refuse entry to individuals arriving for the World Cup finals next summer.

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