Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Good Call: Fan Fined $320,000 for Assaulting Referee (Denmark)

When Ronni Noervig—or as the Danish media calls him, "the football idiot"—ran onto a soccer pitch on June 2, 2007, in an attempt to attack referee Herbert Fander after Fander issued Danish defender Christian Poulsen a red card for punching a Swedish player, he was immediately arrested and the match was abandoned with the score, 3-3.

Several days later, the UEFA awarded Sweden a 3-0 victory, effectively forfeiting the game due to lax security. Additionally, the UEFA banned the Danish Football Federation (DBU) for two international games, costing the DBU an estimated 2.2 million Danish crowns ($360,000) in revenue.

When the DBU took "football idiot" Noervig to court, they attempted to recoup that loss by suing Norvig, resulting in a 2009 court ruling that ordered Noervig to pay about 1.58 Danish crowns, or $270,000.

Norvig appealed the harsh sentence, which just recently has been upheld and made more severe: The Appeals Court of Eastern Denmark has ordered Norvig to pay $1.82 million kroner ($310,000).

For Noervig, this is a sad end to saga started because of a few moments of especially poor judgment. In November, Noervig had stated he "absolutely did not have the means" to pay the $270,000 fine ordered by the lower court. He echoed the sentiment this week, stating that "the sum the DBU thinks is reasonable [may be] higher than what I can pay."

Let this be a lesson to all potential pitch and field intruders: there are hefty fines, costs and other penalties associated with trespassing onto a playing area, especially when assaulting an official, player or coach is the goal.

With over $300,000 at risk, is it really worth it?

News: Dane Fined 250,000 Euros for Punching Ref


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