Football hooligans soon face digital tracking

Feyenoord football fans riot in Rome (Screenshot YouTube/Polizia di Stato)
Feyenoord football fans riot in Rome on the eve of the February 19, 2015 UEFA Europa League match (Screenshot YouTube/Polizia di Stato)Feyenoord football fans riot in Rome on the eve of the February 19, 2015 UEFA Europa League match (Screenshot YouTube/Polizia di Stato)

The Public Prosecutor and the KNVB are advocating for digital tracking of football hooligans. The digital reporting obligation for hooligans will be discussed in the Eerste Kamer (Senate) today during the treatment of a new version of the Dutch football law, the Volkskrant reports.

The Tweede Kamer (lower house of parliament) previously showed support for the plans of a digital reporting obligation. This will mean that football hooligans wit a stadium ban have to report their location before, during and after a match with a special phone. The KNVB tested the system on supporters of Ajax, NEC and RKC, who participated on a voluntary basis. An alarm goes off on their phones before, during and after the match. They can only turn off the alarm by scanning their fingerprint, after which the device's location is sent to the police. Currently football hooligans with a stadium ban have to report to a police station during the match.

The Public Prosecutor and KNVB think that the digital reporting is a good alternative to the classic physical reporting to a police station. KNVB also thinks that this will lead to fewer police officers that have to be deployed and that there will be fewer problems in and around the stadiums.

Minister Ivo Opstelten of Security and Justice was very positive about the KNVB's test and called the digital reporting "promising". He will discuss how to improve the device with mayors and police officers next month.

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