An Indonesian court on Thursday found a senior soccer official guilty of negligence for his role in the deaths of more than 130 people during a crowd crush at a match in the country’s East Java province last year, one of the worst disasters in the sport’s history.
A judge sentenced Abdul Haris, Chairman of the Organizing Committee for soccer club Arema FC to a year and a half in prison, the first jailing linked to the tragedy.
Haris was found responsible for selling too many tickets, exceeding the maximum capacity of the stadium.
Police fired tear gas after Arema FC supporters ran onto the pitch following their loss to rival Persebaya Surabaya at a match on October 1, triggering a crowd crush as people ran toward the exits.
It was one of the world’s deadliest stadium stampedes, with 135 people killed.
An investigation last year concluded that the tear gas was the main cause of death – a crowd control measure banned by world soccer governing body FIFA.
This is a breaking news story. More to come…