Eleven charged over Leeds United v Tottenham football disorder

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Eleven men have been charged after an “appalling explosion of violence” following a football match.

The men aged between 17 and 49 were charged with affray offences following the Leeds United FA Cup match against Tottenham Hotspur at Elland Road in January this year.

The group who are from addresses in Leeds, one in Bradford, three in South Yorkshire and one in North Yorkshire have been bailed to appear at Leeds Magistrates Court on April 25.

A 53-year old man from Leeds received a caution for affray.

On January 27 this year about 40 Leeds and Tottenham supporters clashed outside Yates’s Wine Lodge, in Boar Lane, at about 6pm.

Officers were brought in from across the city to deal with the incident and had to form lines to clear those involved from the area. Bottles were thrown at officers during the incident but no officers were injured.

An investigation led by Detective Chief Inspector Neil Lineham, from West Yorkshire Police’s Homicide and Major Enquiry Team, was launched to identify and trace those involved in the disorder.

A number of suspects and witnesses were identified from detailed analysis of CCTV footage from Leeds City Council’s Leedswatch system and from private security cameras in the area.

Chief Superintendent Paul Money, Divisional Commander for City and Holbeck, said: “This was an appalling explosion of violence in the heart of the city centre at tea-time on a Sunday and is obviously not something that we can ever tolerate.

“The CCTV that has been gathered as part of this investigation shows some elements from Leeds and Tottenham taking part in what we suspect may have been a pre-arranged fight.

“There is no doubt that any ordinary members of the public who witnessed these scenes would have been put in fear. It also tied up a significant amount of police resources that had to be brought in from other parts of the division.

“Our investigation is continuing and we will be liaising closely with the Crown Prosecution Service as to potential charges against those arrested.

“We want to send out a very clear deterrent message to anyone who thinks they can come to Leeds and become involved in football-related violence and not have to face the consequences.”

Police and Crime Commissioner Mark Burns-Williamson said: “Football violence is something which should have been consigned to the history books long ago, but West Yorkshire Police still have to invest valuable time and resources in preventing such incidents and bringing those involved to justice.

“It’s money that could be better spent elsewhere, serving communities.

“The vast majority of fans want to come and support their teams in a pleasant, family atmosphere and they should be able to do so in the full knowledge that those who don’t will be rightly held to account.”

As part of the investigation, detectives have released CCTV images of two men they want to trace in connection with the incident.

Anyone who recognises the men is asked to contact Detective Constable Phil Maher at Holbeck police station on 0113 285 5419 or via 101, or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.