ELEVEN of the people arrested following a street fight in Calle Joan Miró on Sunday night were released with charges at noon yesterday.
Riot police were on duty as they arrived at court, where a large group of family members, mainly women with children, were waiting for them.
Ten of the accused, mainly from Ecuador, confirmed the statements made to the police. Some said that they had nothing to do with the fight, while others admitted that they were members of the Latin gang known as ñetas. They included a 25-year-old Majorcan who claimed to have belonged to the gang for various days. The only one to make a statement in court was Julio D G V, who claimed that he was the leader of the ñetas in the islands. He said that they had the intention of forming a socio-cultural, political and sports association called Young ñetas of Balearics. They are not considered part of the official ñeta association. Several members of the gang claimed that the fight was started by the blin blin, mainly Dominicans, who were allegedly responsible for incidents in Son Oliva park last year.
They identified several members of this gang to the police but no further arrests have been made.
They also alleged that they were the victims of the aggression, saying that they were forced to take refuge behind cars when the others threw bottles. They said the police arrived before they could react and the attackers fled.
The causes of the fight, which involved about 60 people, are unclear. Some of the accused said that it began when a woman was pushed, others that they were insulted and provoked.
Although 14 people were arrested after the fight, three were released as they were minors.
The charges were causing bodily harm, damaging vehicles and possibly belonging to an organisation to commit crime.
The National Police have a special unit to crack down on gangs, and they have identified around 100 people who belong to violent Latin gangs. The Local Police unit has a longer list, although it also includes groups of other characteristics.
Some of those involved in last weekend's fight are also thought to have been involved in a fight in Cala Mayor two weeks ago.
The ñeta association (the word means new birth) started as a Puerto Rican prison gang around 1979, to protect weaker inmates preyed upon by another gang.