The two people arrested in connection with crowd violence during a football match between Apoel and Karmiotissa on Friday will appear in court on October 12, police said on Monday.
The first person to be arrested, a 34 year-old who, during an argument at the match, pulled out a knife and attacked other fans, will remain in custody until the trial.
The second person arrested, a 46-year-old man part of the Karmiotissa official delegation at the match, is currently being treated at a private clinic in Limassol, where he is under police guard.
According to police spokesperson Christos Andreou, CCTV footage obtained at the stadium seems to indicate that the 46-year-old was also carrying a knife.
During the match at the GSP stadium in Nicosia, two groups of fans got into a fight just after the start of the second half. Members of the police as well as private security personnel intervened.
“The two people arrested will have to defend themselves against accusations of assault, illegal possession of weapons, disturbing public peace and resistance to public officials,” Andreaou told the Cyprus News Agency.
Moreover, the man who was part of the Karmiotissa delegation will have to answer to accusation of illegal employment, as confirmed by Andreou.
Reports published on several media outlets on Monday say the man is a third country national and not legally allowed to work in Cyprus.
The police spokesperson added that efforts are underway to ban both people arrested from entering sports venues.
GSP stadium manager Phivos Constantinides said the ugly scenes witnessed during the game could have easily been avoided if checks were carried out properly.
Speaking to CyBC, Constantinides said that because the match was not considered a high-risk event by the authorities, stewards tasked with upholding security outside the stadium did not properly check people’s fan cards, as they are required to do by law.
“Everyone needs to have their fan cards check before accessing the premises,” he said. “That goes for both fans and for team’s delegations.”
Constantinides also spoke of an increase of violent incidents linked to football games in Cyprus in recent months and attributed the escalation to the return of organised fans at stadiums.