26 June 2006

Setting a useful precedent

Russians Detained After Playing Rugby

More than 100 people were detained in the southern Russian city of Rostov-On-Don after police mistook an innocent game of rugby for a mass brawl. Russian news agency RIA said police had received a tip-off about a mass fracas at an empty sports ground on the city's outskirts yesterday.

More than 70 officers arrived to find dozens of cars parked around a grassy field and around 60 people watching what appeared to be a fight between two criminal gangs. Police broke up proceedings and detained some 100 people before determining that they were engaged in game of rugby instead of brawling.

All the detainees were released several hours later, but not before being scolded for not alerting authorities ahead of time.

The southern Russian region is adjacent to the troubled North Caucasus, where violence from Chechnya regularly spills into nearby areas.

- Newsroom.co.nz, 13 June 2006

[Courtesy of Louwrens]

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