It has been confirmed that footage of scenes outside the Stade de France on May 28, described as “extremely violent,” has been deleted.
The fallout of the violent and inept crowd control measures in the buildup to, during and after the Champions League final continues this week.
Supporters were funnelled into crushes, tear-gassed, pepper-sprayed and attacked by local youths, while the final between Liverpool and Real Madrid was delayed by 36 minutes as UEFA blamed fans for turning up late.
Footage shared on social media by hundreds, if not thousands, of fans in attendance is evidence to the contrary, forcing UEFA into a half-hearted apology six days later.
But while UEFA have backed down under pressure from Liverpool and Real, the same cannot be said of the French authorities – despite the chief of Paris police Didier Lallement admitting on Thursday that the figure of 40,000 fans arriving at the ground without genuine tickets was falsified.
Now, French outlet RMC Sport relay word from Erwan Le Prevost, director of international relations at the French Football Federation, that CCTV footage of the events has been destroyed.
“The images are available for seven days. They are then automatically destroyed,” Le Prevost explained.
“We needed a requisition to provide them to the different populations. The images are extremely violent.”
Le Prevost was speaking at a senate meeting to further investigate the circumstances of the night in question, with Liverpool metro mayor Steve Rotheram in attendance via video link.
“Mrs Oudea-Castera (French sports minister) and Mr Darmanin (French interior minister) have set up a false version which serves the interests of the French authorities,” Rotheram is quoted as telling the senate.
“It’s like with the Hillsborough disaster, they put the blame on the fans.”
Rotheram’s comparison to the Hillsborough disaster is particularly apt in light of the news of destroyed CCTV footage which, as journalist Dan Austin responded, “would have proven Darmanin, Oudea-Castera and Lallement liars.”
I’ve been asked a few questions about the CCTV tapes stolen from Hillsborough stadium on the evening of the disaster, so thought I would do a thread on it
This is the crime report for the theft from 21/4/89
Note the double underlining of the “NO PUBLICITY” instruction pic.twitter.com/QIC4gSaI88
— The Wrong Kennedy (@wrong_kennedy) June 14, 2021
It was claimed by the South Yorkshire Police in the aftermath of Hillsborough that CCTV footage was stolen, with these events bearing a scary similarity.
“What this does mean, is that all of the video footage which does exist from people’s phones completely exonerates fans and still proves the French authorities are lying,” Austin continued.
“The truth is known full well in France and all around the world. But what consequences will there be?”