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By ESPN Staff
Nov 8, 2006

Police chief appointed to tackle German hooliganism

BERLIN, Nov 8 (Reuters) - Germany's Football Association (DFB) has appointed the former chief of an elite police special unit to head efforts to improve security after a rise in fan violence in the country's lower leagues.

The DFB said Helmut Spahn, 45, who was also in charge of security for Germany's World Cup organising committee, would take up the post that has been created to fight violence and racism in soccer.

The DFB set up a task force last week to tackle the growing problem by looking into improving stadium security in the lower divisions and ensuring that the DFB was better informed about instances of crowd trouble.

While there was little fan trouble at the World Cup, there have been outbreaks of violence at several amateur and lower division matches in recent weeks.