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Valencia fans jailed for Real Madrid's Vinícius racial abuse - ESPN

Three fans have been sentenced to eight months in prison and banned from stadiums for two years over the racist abuse of Vinícius Júnior at Mestalla in May 2023.

The incident — which took place during Real Madrid's 1-0 LaLiga defeat to Valencia — sparked uproar worldwide, after the Brazil star identified an individual in the crowd who had been racially abusing him, causing the game to be suspended.

Vinícius later hit out at Spanish authorities' handling of the issue, saying «racism is normal in LaLiga,» while the league called for greater powers to deal with the problem.

On Monday, three fans were found guilty of a crime against moral integrity — aggravated by racially motivated discrimination — under article 173.1 of Spain's Criminal Code.

They were sentenced to an initial 12 months in prison, reduced by 1⁄3 to eight months, under a principle which sees reduced punishments for defendants who accept criminal responsibility.

They also received a three-year stadium ban, reduced to two years for the same reason, and will have to pay costs.

«Many people asked me to ignore it, others said that my fight was in vain and that I should just 'play football',» Vinícius said in a post on X.

«But, as I've always said, I'm not a victim of racism. I am an executioner of racists. This first criminal conviction in Spanish history is not for me. It's for all black people.

»Let the other racists be afraid, ashamed and hide in the shadows. Otherwise, I'll be here to call them out. Thank you to LaLiga and Real Madrid for helping to bring about this historic condemnation. There's more to come."

Lawyers for the defendants requested on Monday that their prison sentences be suspended — a common practice in Spain for sentences under two years —

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