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Victoria announces tough fines to crack down on sport hooligans
Fines for hooliganism offences at major sporting events in Victoria will more than double under legislation to be introduced in the Victorian Parliament.
Under the proposed new laws, the penalty for possessing a flare at a sporting match will increase to more than $700 while lighting a flare will attract a fine of more than $1,000 and three penalty units.
The measures are part of a Victorian Government crackdown on anti-social behaviour at sporting matches.
Victorian Premier Ted Baillieu explained that he expects the new legislation will reduce incidents of sporting hooliganism, stating "there is no place for violent or destructive behaviour at sporting events.
"The legislation will help police and venue managers deal with cases of unacceptable behaviour by a very small minority of individuals that can spoil the sporting experience for everyone.
"Hooligans who light flares, invade the pitch', damage the venue or destroy chairs will now face tough penalties."
The new legislation also targets unauthorised ticket sellers and expands bans on aerial advertising.
Key amendments to the Major Sporting Events Act 2009 include:
More than doubling the infringement penalties for possession and lighting of flares, taking on-the-spot fines for possession from 2 penalty units to 5 penalty units ($704) and for lighting flares from 3 penalty units to 7.5 penalty units ($1,056).
Adding to the offences for which a person can be banned from events or venues for up to five years, including the offences of disrupting the event while 'invading' the pitch, damaging the sporting competition space and refusing to comply with directions to leave and not re-enter.
Strengthening the powers of police and authorised officers to enforce the crowd management provisions of the Act.
Adding key Spring Racing Carnival events to the list of annual events permanently covered by the Act.
Introducing an on-the-spot fine of $704 for unauthorised on-selling or advertising of five or fewer tickets to protected events at a price above face value.
Adding international one-day and Twenty20 cricket matches held at the MCG and the AFL match held on Anzac Day to the list of major events that are permanently covered by aerial advertising protections ensuring that where an event such as the AFL Grand Final is protected by the aerial advertising provisions, any replay will also be covered.
Image: Hooligans at the Australian Open.
14th January 2013 - POLICE REVEAL SECURITY PLANS FOR AUSTRALIAN OPEN
24th December 2012 - A-LEAGUE FAN BANNED AFTER RACIST ABUSE
30th January 2012 - RECORD CROWDS ATTEND AUSTRALIAN OPEN
21st January 2010 - BRUMBY SLAMS ‘UNACCEPTABLE’ OPEN HOOLIGANISM
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