1,300 people with football banning orders forced to hand in passports to police

9 October 2022, 09:45

Picture of seat that has 'banned for throwing' message at Everton v Leeds United - Premier League
Picture of seat that has 'banned for throwing' message at Everton v Leeds United - Premier League. Picture: Getty
Fran Way

By Fran Way

More than 1,300 people who have been subject to football banning orders will be forced to hand in their UK passports to police in new measures that come into force on Friday.

The measures will prevent violent and abusive football fans in England and Wales from travelling to the World Cup in Qatar, starting next month.

The Home Office said those who fail to hand over their passport and attempt to travel to the tournament could face six months in prison and an unlimited fine.

If any of the 1,308 people with banning orders wish to travel to other countries from November 10 until the end of the tournament, they will need to seek permission to hold on to their passports and be subject to checks.

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Home Secretary Suella Braverman said: "We are all looking forward to cheering England and Wales on in Qatar and we will not let the behaviour of a minority of lawbreakers tarnish what will be an exciting tournament.

"Violence, abuse and disorder is not tolerated here, and this criminal behaviour will not be tolerated at the World Cup which is why we are taking this firm approach.

"As with all events of this nature, we are working closely with the host authorities on the safety of British nationals attending and on delivering a successful and enjoyable event."

The Home Office said preventative measures were put in place for previous international tournaments, with the 2018 World Cup achieving 99% compliance with the requirement for people with football banning orders to surrender their passports.