German soccer federation bans 88 Dortmund fans from stadiums

BERLIN (AP) — The German football federation issued nationwide stadium bans against 88 Borussia Dortmund fans who were apparently intent on violence at the side's Bundesliga game in Darmstadt last Saturday.

Police in the state of Hessen stopped the fans in two buses and found the passengers armed with flares, combat gloves, balaclavas, painkillers, drugs, and Darmstadt banners.

Federation security chief Hendrik Grosse Lefert says, "This quick decision, taken in close consultation with Borussia Dortmund, is another clear signal against violence around football games."

The bans are effective immediately due to the "specific risk situation."

Dortmund's next home game against Wolfsburg on Saturday is subject to a partial stadium closure affecting almost 25,000 fans.

The club has been fined 100,000 euros ($106,000) for disturbances inside stadiums at several other games this season.

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