SWC thugs face 'robust' cops
London - England football hooligans in South Africa will face a "robust" police force armed with guns, plastic bullets and water cannon, according to a report on Skynews.
The officer in charge of policing England's World Cup travelling fans says he will need to explain their culture to South African police who may find them intimidating.
"The South African police will be robust, and initially they had an image of England fans on the rampage, but we have explained that they shouldn't see the traditional singing and chanting as a precursor to violence," said Andy Holt, the assistant chief constable of South Yorkshire.
"The courts will deal fairly with any troublemakers, but South African prisons are pretty challenging places."
More than 3 200 fans will be stopped from travelling because they are subject to banning orders and will have to give UK police their passports before the tournament starts in June.
Those who slip the net will be turned back on arrival and any who manage to get into South Africa run the risk of being identified by a small team of British police spotters.
Some other fans judged undesirable may also be stopped from entering the host country. Holt said there was no indication that hooligans were planning trouble during the World Cup and he was more concerned about the potential for booze-fuelled violence in pubs showing matches here.
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