MORE THAN 400 people in West Yorkshire have been arrested for alleged domestic abuse offences in the run-up to the Euro 2016 football tournament, police revealed today.
In a nine-day offensive targeted at “known offenders”, specialist officers swooped on addresses across the county between May 30 and June 8.
Police said the pre-emptive strike was aimed at avoiding an increase in domestic abuse seen during previous soccer tournaments.
Detective Superintendent Darren Minton, at West Yorkshire Police, said: “England’s first game of the tournament is on Saturday night. With a kick off at 8pm we expect that many people will be drinking ahead of that time and whilst we want everyone to enjoy the football, we are also aware that during previous tournaments we have seen an increase in domestic abuse.”
He added: “Inflamed passions and excess alcohol on a match day or any other day is no excuse for aggressive, controlling or violent behaviour. And any forms of abuse will be met by the full force of the law.”
A total of 412 people were held during the nine days of raids. Police said the campaign was focused “on the impact of domestic abuse on children who may be victims or witness abuse”.
Officers have not said how many people have been charged with offences.
Superintendent Pat Casserly, of West Yorkshire Police’s Protective Crime Services, said: “The concentrated activities of our teams over the past nine days has been in addition to the extensive work we do every day in tackling these issues and protecting people who are vulnerable and we are continuing to tackle these often hidden issues, along with other safeguarding incidents throughout the upcoming football tournament.”
He added: “Every report of domestic abuse is attended by an officer and where appropriate a crime is recorded, investigated and the victim safeguarded.”
There is a national domestic violence helpline on 0808 2000 247.