Former Suffolk police helicopter helps quell trouble at African Cup of Nations semi-final between Equatorial Guinea and Ghana

The former Suffolk Constabulary helicopter

The former Suffolk Constabulary helicopter - Credit: Archant

The former Suffolk Constabulary helicopter helped quell crowd trouble at the African Cup of Nations semi-final between hosts Equatorial Guinea and Ghana last night.

After Suffolk dispensed with its services in 2013 it is understood it was eventually sold on to the authorities in Equatorial Guinea.

TV viewers around the world saw the helicopter being used in a bid to bring the violence among spectators under control.

More than 30 people were said to have been hurt during the incident.

“It’s now like a war zone,” the Ghana Football Association (GFA) tweeted.

When play restarted Ghana won the game 3-0 to go through to the final on Sunday where they will play Ivory Coast.

As a result of the trouble Equatorial Guinea’s football federation has been fined 100,000 US dollars (£65,000) .

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The Confederation of African Football said at least 36 people were hurt in the violence in Malabo, and 14 were taken to hospital.

Home fans threw objects at Ghanaian fans, players and officials in ugly scenes at Malabo Stadium. The game was held up for more than 30 minutes in the second half as riot police fired tear gas at supporters.

CAF also ordered Equatorial Guinea’s federation to pay for treatment for all those injured in the violence.

Suffolk Constabulary now shares a helicopter from the National Police Air Service on a contracted-hours basis with other forces.