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Mon 20 Apr 2015 11:49 AM

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Egyptian court sentences 11 to death over football riot

s/f The 2012 riot saw 74 killed, more than 1,000 injured in Egypt’s deadliest football violence

Egyptian court sentences 11 to death over football riot
Egyptian defendants sit behind bars during their trial at a police institute in the outskirts of Cairo on April 19, 2015. An Egyptian court sentenced 11 football fans to death after a retrial over a 2012 stadium riot in the canal city of Port Said that left 74 people dead. (AFP/Getty Images)

An Egyptian court has sentenced 11 football fans to death over a deadly stadium riot in 2012.

Seventy-four people died and at least 1,000 were injured when violence erupted after a match between home team Al Masry and Cairo’s Al Ahly in Port Said in February 2012. It was the deadliest sport-related riot in Egypt, where fans regularly clash amongst themselves or with security forces.

In January 2013, a court sentenced 21 people to death, but after more than a year, the High Court overturned the sentences and ordered a retrial of all 73 defendants.

The defendants included nine police officers and three officials from Al Masry club, while the rest were fans of the two clubs.

The sentences were referred to the Grand Mufti, the country's most senior religious authority, last week. His decision is not binding but referral is needed in order to impose a death sentence.

The case could be subject to a further appeal which could take several years.

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