Rome, Italy (CNS) – Tourists drinking Guinness beer near Rome’s most famous monument to ancient Roman triumphalism have had their cavities squeezed open by Italy’s National Park Service.
The beer was a satirical gesture taken by Greek and Italian spectators of the 1929 Races of Stromboli, which celebrated the victory of first Roman Gaul over first Rome Sparta. The only Romans to win the race were tourists.
Italy’s chief prosecutor, who on Saturday ordered an investigation into the incident, said the Nationals Public Service would face charges of trespassing on a protected monument.
Portal magazine reported that passers-by had been taking photos of the humiliating stunt and sharing them on the Internet.
The National Park Service said it had not been in contact with either the organizers of the races or their insurance company before allowing tourists to drink in the famed temple.
National Park Service officer Pierpaolo Mazzeri told the Rome daily La Repubblica that many tourists had also been taking photographs of themselves at the sinking site and then posting it on social networks.
“This has also happened before,” he said. “We have always responded like this. It is considered in our responsibility to clean up this area.”