Pedro Hernández, president of Alianzaa team in the first division of football in El Salvador, was stuck this Thursday (25). In addition to him, other team officials and employees of the Cuscatlán Stadium also received arrest warrants. Last Saturday, 12 fans died on site during a game involving the home team. More than 100 people were injured in the tragedy.
The Attorney General’s Office of El Salvador confirmed this Thursday the arrests of Pedro Hernández, Edwin Abarca Ventura, Alianza’s security manager; Zoila Córdova, the club’s financial manager; Reynaldo Avelar, general manager of EDESSA, the company that owns the stadium; and Samuel García Montano, responsible for site security.
The detainees will appear in court in the coming days and will be criminally prosecuted for the crimes of manslaughter, culpable bodily injury and public damage. The accusations all refer to the tragedy that happened at the beginning of the match between Alianza and FAS, on Saturday night, for the quarterfinals of the national championship.
According to the authorities and testimonies of witnesses, hundreds of fans revolted at the entrance to the stadium when they were unable to enter, even claiming to have a ticket in their hands. They pressed the gate, forced access and started a rush in the stands, which ended in 12 deaths and hundreds of injuries.
The Public Ministry assured that the organizers of the match sold more tickets than they should have. “After running out of available tickets for the sporting event, they decided to illegally sell tickets issued for previous matches,” it said.
Footage broadcast on local television showed the aftermath of the Alianza fans fleeing. Dozens of people arrived at the camp, where they received medical treatment. Fans who managed to escape the confusion remained at the scene, waving their shirts, trying to alleviate the situation of the victims who were lying on the grass, without movement.
The spokesman for the rescue group Comandos de Salvamento, Carlos Fuentes, said that more than 500 people were assisted at the stadium, which has capacity for around 35,000 people. The 100 people in the most serious condition were transferred to national hospitals and to the Salvadoran Institute of Social Security, some showed signs of asphyxia and others “different types of trauma”.