PRETORIA (Reuters) - At least seven Argentine soccer hooligans were detained at Johannesburg airport trying to enter South Africa on Sunday for the World Cup, the Argentina team's security officer said.
"We have at the moment seven people in detention. I can't give you their names because the procedure has not yet been completed," Argentine Federal Police officer Hugo Lompizano told Reuters.
Lompizano has been working closely with South Africa's authorities on security issues with hundreds of fans expected to fly over from Argentina for the tournament starting on Friday.
Argentine media reported that up to 10 fans were detained and could be deported because they had criminal records from among 80 who arrived in South Africa via Angola.
In order to keep the hooligans out of Sunday's practice at Argentina's University of Pretoria base, which was open to the public by FIFA disposition, the Argentine Football Association decided to only invite select schools and local dignitaries, while allowing some ordinary fans through.
There is a 200-strong police guard at Argentina's camp.
(Reporting by Enrique Andres Pretel, additional reporting by Luis Ampuero in Buenos Aires; Writing by Rex Gowar; Editing by Pritha Sarkar)