Owner of Jerusalem soccer team filed complaint against fan club

Beitar team owner, fresh off big deal with UAE sheikh for 50% ownership of club, files police complaint against La Familia fan group.

Neriah Weiss ,

Graffiti
Graffiti
iStock

After graffiti was spray-painted against Beitar soccer team owner Moshe Hogeg, threatening him and his family members, Hogeg filed a police complaint against the La Familia fan group.

A day ahead of a big rally in support of the recently-signed deal with the UAE's Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Nahyan in the Bayit Ve'gan neighborhood, Hogeg took the case to court.

Hogeg filed the complaint after derogatory graffiti was spray-painted on several occasions in the past week targeting him and the historic agreement between Beitar and the Emirati prince, giving Al Nahyan a 50% share in the club. While an Arab player hadn't donned the team uniform until Hogeg took over as team owner, members of La Familia, an allegedly racist group famous for its clashes with fans of Israeli-Arab teams in the country's elite league, woke up to a reality in which Beitar is now partly owned by one.

La Familia showed little favor for the move in the days prior to its culmination, making their disdain apparent by spray-painting offensive messages in a number of locations in the capital city.

At one point, the group went as far as posting personal threats against Hogeg's family members, promising to pay them back for the "betrayal."

Hours after making his return from the UAE during which Hogeg signed off on the deal, Beitar's owner filed a complaint with the police against senior members of La Familia.

A spokesman for the team said civil lawsuits would also be filed as a result of the group's actions.

After making the visit to the police station, Hogeg said he was not afraid of violence directed against him. "I am not intimidated and will not allow them to intimidate me, but I will also not allow these types of threats to continue. I will pursue anyone who threatens my wife and children," he vowed.



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