TESTIMONY – “They counted to three, then they went for it” : according to a witness, “about sixty” of individuals without a ticket would have violently entered the Stade de France on Saturday evening to attend the rapper’s concert. Eighteen of them were expelled a little later by the stewards.
The crisis meetings, reports and recommendations that followed the serious incidents at the Stade de France during the Champions League final are still on everyone’s mind. But this Saturday evening September 3, while rapper Booba gathered 80,000 fans for a historic concert marking the peak of his career, several dozen people again managed to force security around the stadium, and some could even have attended then to the concert without having tickets, generating a scene of panic among the people who waited in line. Spectators, provided with a valid ticket, then waited three quarters of an hour in front of a screened entrance, before finally being able to join their places when the concert had already started. The Paris police headquarters declared this Sunday evening to the Figaro that 18 individuals among those who entered the stadium illegally were however identified and expelled by the agents.
Le Figaro was able to collect the testimony of one of the spectators who witnessed this new scene of violence at the entrance to the stadium. While he was queuing in front of gate U, he saw arriving around 7:45 p.m.about sixty young men dressed in black, and who did not have a ticket to attend the concert(while the PP speaks of a “twenty individuals“). According to our witness, Jessie, one of them would then have started a countdown, before giving the signal to attack the security gates where the stadium agents were checking the tickets: “They counted to three, then they charged. There were one or two policemen and maybe six officers, but they were taken aback and there were far too many individuals. In the line, there was a movement of panic, everyone moved away, it was very violent. People were shocked, I saw many crying girls! When about fifteen police officers arrived as reinforcements, it was too late, the sixty people had already crossed the gates and climbed the stairs leading to the stands.»
Jessie specifies that the facts took place in an area inside which the spectators had been the subject of an initial screening, but it was only a body search; before going through the gates, spectators did not have to present a ticket. It was therefore not surprising that people without tickets were able to access the gates, and from there, cross the gates violently. As for the police, they were numerous around this area, near the search points, but present in fewer numbers near the gates.
“When the police finally arrived it was too late, continues Jessie, but they still closed the gates and asked us to step back. Then we had to wait three quarters of an hour before finally being able to enter, and when I sat down in my place, the intro to the concert had already passed, we entered very late.Above all, he confides that he recognized several of the people who forced their way in before his eyes, and who then attended the concert, comfortably seated in the rows of the stadium and even in the gold square for some of them.
18 individuals deported
Joined by Le Figarothe Paris police headquarters relativizes the extent of the facts, and specifies for its part that most of the individuals would have been escorted out of the stadium afterwards: “the security guards failed to block all of the protagonists. The police present within the framework of the system set up in the surroundings and on the access routes of the spectators were called in to reinforce the stewards. […] Of the twenty individuals who returned without title, 18 were identified by video operators at the Stade de France and escorted by private security outside the sports arena.»
The police headquarters confirms, however, that none of the spectators without a ticket who violently forced access were arrested, and that the “other attemptsof clandestine intrusion into the Stade de France werecontained” thanks to “a massive device for securing and managing flows and fighting crime around the stadium and deterring and repressing intrusions“. Will legal action be taken against the troublemakers, whose faces have obviously been identified in the CCTV footage? For the moment, the police headquarters cannot give any details on this subject.
13 street vendors were also arrested outside the area and taken into custody, as well as a man who committed violence during an altercation outside the stadium.