Man jailed for 3 years over World Cup tickets

PRETORIA, South Africa _ A Nigerian man has been sentenced to three years in prison by a World Cup-dedicated court in South Africa for being in unlawful possession of 30 match tickets. Police said Kunle Benjamin was sentenced on Wednesday after he “could not give a satisfactory explanation” why he had the tickets in his […]

PRETORIA, South Africa _ A Nigerian man has been sentenced to three years in prison by a World Cup-dedicated court in South Africa for being in unlawful possession of 30 match tickets.

Police said Kunle Benjamin was sentenced on Wednesday after he “could not give a satisfactory explanation” why he had the tickets in his possession.

Benjamin was stopped in his car in the South African capital Pretoria when police noticed him driving “erratically.”

Police said in a statement Thursday that a magistrate at the World Cup court convicted Benjamin of possessing stolen property. He was incarcerated without the option of a fine.

Police say FIFA discovered the tickets had been bought by two men on the Internet, but their addresses could not be verified.

“This is yet again an example of the effectiveness of having dedicated teams … to deal with World Cup-related offenses,” the police statement said.

Benjamin is thought to be the first person sentenced to a jail term by one of the temporary courts.

South African police have moved quickly to clamp down on any illegal activity that affects the commercial rights of FIFA and the World Cup.

Two Dutch women were arrested Wednesday for alleged ambush marketing after they were among 30 women wearing bright orange dresses provided by a beer company to the World Cup game between the Netherlands and Denmark at Soccer City.

Police said Barbara Castelein and Minte Niewpoort were each granted bail of 10,000 rand ($1,300) and had their passports confiscated. They will face charges relating to “unlawful commercial activities.”

FIFA said it would also press charges against the organizers of the stunt, brewer Bavaria, which is not a World Cup sponsor.

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