Football: Gascoigne `could be locked up'

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The Independent Online
Paul Gascoigne could find himself being detained by Italian police as he prepares to face Italy in England's crucial World Cup qualifier, a lawyer in Italy claimed yesterday.

Gascoigne's legal troubles date back to his spell at Lazio and an incident in Rome's city centre on 27 January, 1994, when he assaulted a paparazzi photographer, Lino Nanni.

Gascoigne was convicted in his absence on 17 March this year and given a suspended jail sentence of three months. However, Nanni's lawyer Edmondo Zappacosta told the Gazzetta dello Sport that they now want to use Gascoigne's presence in Rome to press their case for compensation.

Questioned over what could be his next move, Zappacosta said: "Asking the judge for the player to be detained as a precautionary measure. My client and I are evaluating the situation, but we don't want to have to resort to making any dramatic entrances, like at the stadium.

"Gascoigne has been notified at every stage of the case, but has always ignored the affair. He hasn't even appointed a lawyer, which has had to be done for him. All we are asking for today is a gesture of goodwill. Because one thing is certain, sooner or later the player will have to pay Nanni damages. There is no escaping Italian justice."