Four people were arrested in Madrid and three in Valencia in the last hours on hate crime charges. The arrest follows a wave of outrage over the racist insult received by Brazilian player Vinicius Junior.
Detainees in Madrid are accused of hanging a doll with a Brazilian player’s shirt on a bridge near the sporting city of White Club, simulating a gallows.
The incidents took place before the Copa del Rey quarter-final derby against Atlético de Madrid in January. Although the authorities launched an investigation, so far no arrests have been made.
The police crackdown comes two days after Vinicius was subjected to fresh racist slurs during a LaLiga match this weekend, sparking a wave of outrage at home and abroad. For these insults, the police arrested three youths suspected of committing the insults.
It is not the first time that these types of incidents have happened in Spanish football. Although they are not common, other high-profile episodes have occurred in the past. So far, Vinicius Jr. had filed nine complaints for racism, only two have resulted in convictions.
Sports journalist Diego Mengual spoke on the NTN24 Question of Power program regarding the racist insults against player Vinicius.
“Unfortunately, justice is very slow in these types of cases. There is no coercion beyond the media”, he said.
Mengual indicated that “Spanish football should shun fanatics who should not be in Spanish or world football.”
“The Royal Spanish Football Federation and FIFA must act on this matter and not allow these acts to repeat themselves,” he added.