Four arrested in beating, death of man at Argentina soccer game

By Alex Butler  |  Updated April 17, 2017 at 12:25 PM
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April 17 (UPI) -- A soccer fan died after hurdling a stadium barrier while being attacked at an Argentine match in Cordoba and falling 30 feet. Four men have been arrested in the attack, while another remained at large.

Emanuel Balbo, 22, was beaten up by fans Saturday among the crowd of 57,000 and brought down through the stands of Mario Alberto Kempes Stadium. Video of the halftime incident shows the brutality of the attack before he vaulted a barrier and dropped 30 feet. Additional video shows Balbo motionless on the concrete stadium stairs where he landed. He died Monday morning after a stint in a coma.

Belgrano was facing off against rival Talleres.

Fellow fan Diego Frydman was also hurt, according to Belgrano.

"Belgrano Club deeply regrets the death of Emanuel Balbo and, as an organizing institution of the event in which the events happened, ratifies its predisposition to the cause in the corresponding area: Justice," Belgrano said in a statement.

"On a very sad day for the whole celeste family, Belgrano again calls for reflection and brings peace to his community about institutional involvement so that justice is done by Emanuel.

"Here it is not a question of giving effective speeches, but of acting in depth in the corresponding field. That is the real and true commitment of this Club.

"Our condolences to family and friends. QEPD Emanuel."

Emanuel Balbo's father, Raul Balbo, told Miter Cordoba radio, via Clarin that the attack was instigated by Oscar Sapito Gómez, whom Raul Balbo also blames for the death of his younger son four years ago after a car accident.

Emanuel Balbo identified Gómez in the stands, but Gómez told the crowd that Balbo was a supporter of his teams' rival. The crowd then began the thrashing before forcing Balbo to fall more than 30 feet to his death.

"Two people were arrested in the afternoon and another two at dawn," Commissioner Jorge Sergio Gomez told the radio station.

A warrant has been issued for Gómez's arrest, Toda Pasion reported.

"I want to make it clear that my son is not a Talleres fan, he does not have any Talleres tattoos and he was not stealing. My son is a great Belgrano fan. The problem is that, four years ago, my son was killed. Oscar Gómez is one of those who killed my son in 2012. Emanuel recognized him and there arose the confusion. The little man that is Oscar Gómez, instead to defend himself, incited violence by shouting that my son was an adept of Talleres and asked to be taken away, " Raul Balbo told Miter..

The arrestees are charged with attempted aggravated homicide, according to Clarin.

Belgrano tied Talleres 1-1 in the match.

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