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Chileans fight with police after loss

Police use taser on member of Chilean delegation

Posted: Friday July 20, 2007 2:02AM; Updated: Friday July 20, 2007 2:02AM
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TORONTO (AP) -- Members of the Chilean soccer team fought with police and security officers after a semifinal loss at the FIFA Under-20 World Cup tournament.

One person of the Chilean delegation was subdued by taser during the brawl, which occurred as players were getting onto the team bus following a rough 3-0 loss to Argentina.

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Nathan Denette, a photographer for The Canadian Press, said he was outside the stadium with another CP photographer when they heard yelling near the bus.

"All of a sudden we looked over and there was a big brawl that breaks out, between four or five people," Denette said. "Next thing you know, the bus just unloads and there's eight, 10 players come off the bus and there's just fists flying everywhere, between the cops, the security guards, a couple of ladies were involved that were security.

"It looked like a big dogfight. People throwing fists and cops with their billy clubs out and then all of a sudden it got out of control and a police officer grabbed his taser gun and tasered someone -- I don't know if he was a player or if he was part of the team -- as soon as that happened, it got even worse."

The bus was parked at the side of the stadium, where a large fence kept hundreds of angry, chanting fans from getting closer. A tow truck arrived later to take the damaged team bus away.

It was not immediately clear whether the man tasered was a player or official with the Chilean team.

Police eventually handcuffed several players, some of them bloodied and screaming, and escorted them back into the dressing room while FIFA and Canadian soccer officials looked on.

Chilean players involved in the fracas were still at the stadium several hours after the game.

"The players are still in the dressing room and we don't know what's going to happen next," Colin Linford, president of the Canadian Soccer Association, told The Canadian Press.

Linford said while FIFA officials were on hand, police had taken charge of the situation. Police were unavailable for comment.

Two Chilean players were ejected during the loss, and nine yellow cards were issued -- seven to Chile. German referee Wolfgang Stark called 53 fouls -- 30 against Chile.

When the final whistle blew, several Chilean players tried to get at the officiating crew while others stepped in to keep them away. Two police officers escorted the officiating crew off the pitch, but they stopped as they neared the tunnel, eyeing the angry crowd.

Eventually they made a run for it, dashing to the safety of the tunnel below the stands.

Copyright 2007 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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