Tuesday 21 September 2021

Law Preventing and Punishing Violence At Sporting Events Is Not Yet In Force

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It was supported by Costa Rica’s major national soccer clubs, was approved by the Legislature and signed by the Government, however, the Law on the Prevention and Punishment of Violence at Sports Events (Ley para la Prevención y Sanción de la Violencia en Eventos Deportivos) is not yet into force.

Had it been, it may have prevented the violence at Sunday’s game at the National Stadium.

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The law, if and when it goes into force, bans for up to four years anyone who causes a disturbance in a stadium or sports arena, similar to the actions of “La Doce” on Sunday.

The law went into effect last August, but what is missing are the regulations and the official publication in La Gaceta for it to be applied. Celso Gamboa, the deputy minister of Security explained that the “regulations” are ready for signing and will be published in La Gaceta, but did not specify a time frame.

“It’s close, I cannot give you a date, but it is ready”, said Gamboa.

The deputy minister assures that even without the law, today people can be punished under the Penal Code for committing criminal acts inside a stadium, but the new law would impose long term penalties.

One of the promoters of the law, legislator Damaris Quintana, of the Moviemiento Libertario, says “it lacks the will of work”.

Quintana is very vocal. She told La Nacion that the law is in place, but it is not applied due to lack of political will of the minister of Security.

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Once the new law goes into force, it will create a commission comprised of representatives of the Ministries of Seguridad y Cultura, the Instituto Costarricense del Deporte y la Recreación (Icoder), Comité Olímpico and Unafut, which seeks to educate, prevente and punish violent  behaviour at sporting venues.

Source: La Nacion

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