Alleged A-League hooligan was already BANNED from games for 10 years and fled to Europe just after shocking pitch invasion, police reveal – as they hunt 11 more men
- Border Force confirmed banned man left the country soon after pitch invasion
- He could face charges of discharging a missile and violent disorder
- Officers have now charged 32 people over disgraceful scenes on December 17
One of the alleged hooligans being hunted over the Melbourne Victory pitch invasion that rocked the A-League was already banned from attending matches and has fled the country, Victoria Police have confirmed.
The news came as officers released photos of 11 men they are hunting after they allegedly threw bottles and debris at officers during the pitch invasion on December 17.
One of the men being sought is alleged to have thrown a pole at a police response team shortly after more than 100 fans ran onto the ground in wild scenes that saw Melbourne City goalie Thomas Glover left seriously injured when a metal bucket was smashed into his face.
‘Victoria Police will refer the names of all individuals charged with the more serious charges of violent disorder, assault and/or discharge missile to Football Australia in the coming days,’ a Victoria Police spokesman said.
Police have released images of more alleged offenders (pictured) after they were accused of throwing flares, broken seats and bottles during the mayhem at AAMI Park
Officers are seeking 11 more alleged hooligans (one of the men being sought, pictured)
Officers have confirmed the banned fan had left the country in the days after the shocking scenes at AAMI Park.
‘During the course of their investigations, detectives became aware the 33-year-old male left the country, shortly after the match,’ a police spokesman said.
‘Follow-up enquiries with Australian Border Force confirm that he boarded a flight bound for Europe.’
The man is expected to be arrested when he arrives back in Australia. He could face charges of discharging a missile and violent disorder.
Police have charged 32 people over the pitch invasion, with offences including riotous behaviour, violent disorder and assault.
One of the men officers want to talk to is alleged to have thrown a pole at a police response team during the melee on December 17
In addition to Glover, referee Alex King, a TV cameraman and two security staff were injured in the melee, which involved around 150 spectators.
Those facing the most serious crimes will be referred to Football Australia and five others have been cautioned or fined.
Police say about $150,000 worth of damage was caused to AAMI Park during the pitch invasion.
About 80 flares or fireworks were set off, and poles and bottles were thrown at police on the field.
So far 10 of the alleged pitch invaders have received bans from Football Australia.
Melbourne Victory have been hit with the strongest sanctions in the sport’s history over the chaos.
The club have been blocked from selling tickets to home games and their fans cannot attend away games.
Those interim sanctions are in place until January 15 and further punishments could include points deductions and fines.