DETAINED Rayon Sports fans may face up to three years in jail over their alleged violent conduct on Sunday during the game between AS Kigali and Rayon.
The fans may be charged under Article 529 and 530 of the penal code where the actions of any attack and resistance with violence, assault or threats to authorities, security agents enforcing the laws or regulations are categorised.
If violence or rebellion is committed by several unarmed persons and without prior consultation like the case of the enraged Rayon fans, the punishment is 1-3 years in prison if found guilty.
However, Rwanda National Police says it is yet to conclude investigations into the violent misconduct by Rayon Sports fans who vandalized property and pelted stones at security officers and other fans at Amahoro stadium on Sunday following Rayon’s 1-all draw against AS Kigali.
“The investigations are still underway. Usually we have five days from when the incident occurred to conduct the investigations before taking the file to the prosecution,” the Central Region Police Spokesperson Senior Superintendent Urbain Mwiseneza told Times Sport yesterday.
Within those five days the suspects’ file will be forwarded to the prosecution before being presented to court on a yet-to-be known date where their charges will be read out.
On Sunday, Police arrested 12 Rayon Sports fans while their fans club chairman Claude Muhawenimana was also put behind bars on Monday.
Violence broke out when Rayon Sports head coach Luc Eymael and striker Cedric Amissi tried to have a go at the match referee Gervais Munyanziza in protest for the amount of time added on in stoppage time—the ref added four minutes yet Eymeal wanted eight.
During the melee, Munyanziza issued a straight red-card to Amissi, a feat which angered Rayon Sports fans.
The enraged fans started throwing stones and plastic water bottles causing pandemonium inside the stadium, a rare occurrence in Rwandan sport.
Police intervened immediately and controlled the situation, evacuating unharmed match officials and football federation officials.
The suspects are currently detained at Remera Police Station as investigations continue and if found guilty, such behavior is a crime under Articles 529 and 530 of the Rwandan Penal Code.
Article 529 defines a rebellion as any attack and resistance with violence, assault or threats to authorities, civil servants, and private sector employees, security agents enforcing the laws, regulations, administrative instructions and judgments.
According to article 530, the penalty for rebellion states that without prejudice to severe penalties under offences against national security mentioned under Chapter One of Title III of the Organic Law, rebellion shall be punishable by a term of imprisonment of six months to two years if committed by an unarmed person; a term of imprisonment of two years to five years if committed by one person carrying an arm; a term of imprisonment of one year to three years if committed by several unarmed persons and without prior consultation. If there is prior consultation the imprisonment shall be one year to five years and a term of imprisonment of three years to five years, if committed by several armed persons but without prior consultation. If there is consultation, the imprisonment shall be more than five years to ten years.
If the accused occupies a position of command in the rebellion or triggers it the maximum penalty may be imposed.
The police have stepped up their operations with help of the football governing body, (Ferwafa) and other sports associations to prevent such incidents in the future.