Latin America & Caribbean

South Africa to deport 17 Argentina football supporters

Argentina supporters at Nigeria game in Johannesburg, 12 June 2010
Image caption Thousands of Argentina fans have travelled to South Africa

South Africa is to deport 17 Argentina football supporters arrested on suspicion of being troublemakers, police said.

They were described as a possible threat to public order who could disrupt the World Cup.

The 17 were on a list of 800 known hooligans barred from attending matches in Argentina that authorities there gave to South Africa.

Five other Argentina supporters also voluntarily left South Africa.

The 17 were picked up in a police raid early on Wednesday on premises in Pretoria where 165 football supporters were staying.

"During the raid, 17 of the 165 fans present were identified as being persons whom the police consider to be undesirable as spectators at matches," a police statement said.

"These people have been observed at two matches trying to enter the stadiums without tickets," the statement continued.

"They have also behaved in a disorderly fashion on a number of occasions, roughing other fans up and generally causing trouble."