Arrests Made in Argentina Following Threats Against Footballer Ángel Di María

Ángel Di María

Three suspects were arrested in Argentina for threatening football star Ángel Di María and his family. The threats came after Di María expressed his desire to return to his hometown team, Rosario Central. The incident highlights ongoing security concerns in Rosario, one of Argentina’s most dangerous cities.

Three individuals were apprehended in Argentina on Wednesday for issuing threats against footballer Ángel Di María and his family, according to Minister of Security Patricia Bullrich.

One of the arrested, already under scrutiny for drug trafficking, admitted that he and two others were responsible for the threats directed at Di María’s family. The arrest followed an incident on Monday where Di María’s family home in Rosario, northeastern Argentina, was targeted in a drive-by shooting. The assailants also left a written message cautioning the World Cup winner about returning to play for his hometown team.

Ángel Di María

This unsettling event occurred shortly after Di María, who is currently playing for Portuguese club Benfica and whose contract runs until June, expressed a desire to end his professional career at Rosario Central, the club where he began his journey in football.

Reacting to the threats, Di María shared his concerns with a sports broadcaster, stating, “I have my family and what was happening affects me.” He also posted on Instagram Stories, displaying the Rosario flag with the caption: “We ask for peace.”

Rosario Central issued a statement on March 25 condemning the attack: “We cannot let [someone] frighten footballers or attack them or their relatives.”

Rosario is recognized as one of Argentina’s most perilous cities, with a 2022 homicide rate of 22 per 100,000 residents, according to statistics from the government of Santa Fe province. By comparison, New York City had a homicide rate of 3.5 per 100,000 residents in 2018, reported by the Mayor’s Office of Criminal Justice.

In response to escalating violence, the Santa Fe government, with backing from the central government, initiated “Plan Bandera” [“Plan Flag”] earlier this year to combat “narcoterrorism.”

Bullrich expressed her commitment to this cause on X, previously known as Twitter, stating, “We’re chasing the mafias, the drug [traffickers] and extortioners to bring safety to all Rosarinos and all Argentinians,” as she announced the arrests.

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