Europe

Portugal police filmed hitting football fan in front of children

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Media captionA policeman was caught on film knocking a man to the ground

Portuguese prosecutors say they are investigating a police officer who beat a man in front of his young children outside a football stadium.

Footage shows Jose Magalhaes being pushed to the ground and hit with a baton as his children are restrained.

The same police officer also punches the children's grandfather in the face twice when he tries to intervene.

The incident took place outside Guimaraes stadium after Benfica won the Portuguese league title.

Local media report that the policeman, Filipe Silva, faces three separate investigations into his conduct.

He alleges that he had been verbally abused and spat at by the children's father - a claim that Mr Magalhaes strongly denies.

The video shows two policemen approaching the family outside the stadium.

Mr Magalhaes said that he had been allowed to leave the game early because his children had been feeling unwell.

He told reporters that the officers had asked him why he had taken his children to a match that was likely to end in violence.

Image copyright EPA
Image caption Large crowds went to celebrate the match result in central Lisbon
Image copyright EPA
Image caption Riot police clashed with some fans late on Sunday

Mr Magalhaes said he told them that they should be more concerned about people getting crushed inside the stadium.

The video shows one of the police officers knocking Mr Magalhaes to the ground after a brief conversation.

The officer strikes an elderly man in the face twice and takes out his baton to use on the man on the ground.

Two obviously distressed children can be seen being held back by other officers.

Portuguese newspaper Publico, citing police sources, said that Mr Silva used a metal rod during the incident rather than his regular baton.

The incident took place after Benfica won consecutive Primeira Liga titles for the first time in 31 years.

Large crowds greeted the team's players back in Lisbon but some of the celebrations turned violent.

Local media said that police had used force after a number of fans began throwing objects.

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