A 28-year-old Hoffenheim fan was sentenced to three years in prison on Monday for throwing a firecracker during a Bundesliga soccer game. When the firecracker, which is not registered in Germany, was ignited, twelve people were injured, including several children.

Presiding judge Christoph Kern emphasized that it was not a normal case of pyrotechnics in the stadium. Rather, it was about a “massive explosive incident” that put 26,000 people in the Augsburg stadium in fear of terrorism, he said in the verdict. The game between FC Augsburg and TSG 1899 Hoffenheim (1-1) was interrupted for several minutes on November 11, 2023, also to treat the injured.

The 28-year-old made an extensive confession and apologized several times. He also paid compensation to a victim who will probably suffer from tinnitus for the rest of his life because of the firecracker. Three acquaintances of his were in court with the main defendant. They had incited the firecracker thrower or supported him in committing the crime.

They received prison sentences that were suspended for aiding and abetting an explosive explosion and causing grievous bodily harm. The verdict is not yet legally binding.