In Saint-Étienne, eleven violent supporters in court

The trial of the violence that followed the last match of the L1 championship played at Geoffroy-Guichard last May opened on Wednesday in the presence of the eleven defendants at the Saint-Étienne courthouse. After the call of the defendants, aged 21 to 34, and a brief reminder of the facts, the president of the court, Stéphanie Perrin, broadcast several videos showing the scenes of chaos which immediately followed the penalty session won by the ‘AJA against ASSE (5-4) on May 29, synonymous with relegation to L2 from the Saint-Etienne club.

We see, from different angles, an invasion of the lawn by several hundred people, the firing of several dozen smoke bombs in the direction of the official platform, causing the start of fires. A cordon of mobile gendarmes protected by their shields forms a cordon to prevent violent supporters from entering this stand, before tear gas canisters fire the lawn. A police officer from the Saint-Étienne police station, who came to the bar to explain the work that preceded the arrests of 27 supporters on September 19, showed, with supporting images, “the forced entry of two backpacks containing pyrotechnic devices before the match, the violence in the sports arena and that committed against the police outside the stadium».

The Professional Football League, ASSE and the metropolis of Saint-Étienne, which filed a civil action, then filed a complaint for 80,000 euros in damage caused to the stadium’s facilities and 6,000 euros in damage to the public space, at outside of Geoffroy-Guichard. The first defendant to be questioned on Wednesday morning, aged 34, spoke of a “madness provoked by anger“, admitting however that he will have to “stop going to the stadium“. Responsible for a team of 25 people in a transport company, he had already been convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol and violence in a sports arena. The following are members of ultra groups like the Green Angels or the Magic Fans. Among them, the president of the Magic Fans, a 27-year-old professional firefighter. He denied having thrown a projectile, a fact for which he is accused, and denounced “the unspeakable use of certain pyrotechnic devices” who “could have been dangerous“, refusing to touch the smoke since he is president of the group.

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