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Rio kicks off clean up of World Cup thugs

Rio police arrested 13 suspected soccer hooligans last Wednesday at the start of a campaign to eradicate fan violence from the game before the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.

An English-named "Operation Hooligans" was launched, involving 160 officers in Rio and neighbouring towns seeking 19 suspects accused of homicide, carrying illegal weapons and forming gangs, a police chief said.

"The police will act in a very firm way from now on, until the big events in Rio de Janeiro, to fight these outcasts infiltrated into organised groups of fans," the chief of Rio's police force said.