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Football arrests down by a quarter

This is a story from the FSF archive – the FSF and SD merged to become the FSA in 2019.

The Home Office’s arrest statistics for the 2011-12 season have been released today and they make for happy reading. The figures show a drop in total arrests of 24% and, on average, less than one arrest is made at every match. Three out of every four games feature no arrests at all.

Malcolm Clarke, chair of the Football Supporters’ Federation, said: “The dramatic fall in the number of arrests at football games during the 2011-12 season underlines the fact that the overwhelming majority of fans reject football violence of any sort. There’s simply no place for it inside or outside our stadiums.
“The overall picture is a very positive one and the FSF wants to make sure this downward trend continues – we believe it can do so and reaffirm our commitment to a multi-agency approach involving fans’ groups, the football authorities and the police.”

Football-related arrests and banning orders 2011-12:

  • Total attendance in excess of 37 million at regulated football matches. The total number of arrests represents less than 0.01% of the total, or 1 arrest for every 15,782 spectators.
  • During 2011-12 season the total number arrests in connection with all international and domestic football (“regulated”) matches involving teams from, or representing, England and Wales was 2,363. This represents a decrease of 24%, or 726 arrests, on 2010-11 totals. The downwards trend in football-related arrests is continuing, although there remains a significant risk it will escalate if efforts to prevent and tackle football-related disorder are reduced.
  • The statistics cover all arrests designated in law under schedule 1 of the Football Spectators Act 1989 (as amended) reported by police to the Football Banning Orders Authority. This includes football specific offences (e.g. throwing missiles in a stadium, pitch encroachment) and a wide range of generic criminal offences committed in connection with a football match. This covers such arrests at any place within a period of 24 hours either side of a match.
  • During the season an average of less than 1 (0.72) arrest made per match inside and outside of stadia (Premier League 2.12, Championship 0.90, League One 0.41, League Two 0.30).
  • No arrests at 74% of all regulated matches.
  • 53% of all matches were police free – continuing to free up police resources to deal with local police and community priorities.
  • More than 100,000 English and Welsh club fans travelled to Champions League and Europa League matches outside of England and Wales. These 47 matches resulted in just 27 arrests of away fans.
  • The number of football banning orders decreased by 13% to 2,750 on 9th November 2012 from 3,173 on 30th November 2011. This represents 493 new banning orders imposed during the period. Orders are time limited and expiring all the time.

You can download the Home Office’s statistics on football-related arrests and banning orders (2011-12) here…

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