Funeral worker fired for posing with Diego Maradona's open coffin begs for forgiveness

A FUNERAL parlour worker has begged for forgiveness after he was fired for posing with Diego Maradona's open coffin.

Claudio Fernández was pictured standing next to the football idol's open coffin, alongside his son, who made a thumbs-up gesture.

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A third man appeared in another image in which he posed beside Maradona's body giving a thumbs-up.

Mr Fernández told Radio 10 yesterday that the decision to take the photo was something "instantaneous", reports the BBC.

"My son, like every kid, raised his thumb and they took the photo," he said.

"I know that many people have been offended, they have taken it badly."

Maradona's coffin was left open for the family wake which preceded the public send-off, which started at 6am local time today.

Since the photo surfaced online Mr Fernández said he has received death threats.

"They say they are going to kill us, break our heads," he told the radio station.

The Sepelios Pinier funeral parlour said the three men who took the pictures were "outsourced employees" who helped carry the coffin.

Speaking to TN new channel Matías Picón, the manager of the parlour said that the company was "devastated" by the images.

He said his company had organised funeral services for other members of the Maradona family.

"The family has total confidence in us, that's why we are so affected," he said.

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"My father is 75 years old and he is crying, I am crying, my brother too, we are destroyed," Mr Picón added.

The owner of the funeral parlour also confirmed today to local media the workers have been sacked.

Argentina's president Alberto Fernandez has decreed three days of mourning after the death of the legendary player of a suspected heart attack aged 60.

Maradona's body lay in a wooden coffin with the blue and white national flag and an Argentina shirt with his famous number 10 in the Casa Rosada presidential palace in the capital Buenos Aires.

Maradona’s lawyer Matias Morla named the sick selfie culprit and posted a social media picture of him on his official Twitter feed as he pledged to take legal action. 

“For the memory of my friend I am not going to rest until he pays for this aberration,” he said.

Maradona will be buried later Thursday at the Jardin de Paz cemetery on the outskirts of the Argentine capital, where his parents were also laid to rest, his spokesman Sebastian Sanchi said.

As his body was brought to the presidential palace, fans clashed with police as they scrambled to get a glimpse of the Argentine football legend's casket in Buenos Aires.

Grief and passion boiled over as heartbroken supporters broke through barriers and brawled with riot police near the presidential palace.

Pictures also show hordes of tearful fans surrounding a white hearse last night as they desperately hoped for a glimpse of their hero's final journey through the capital.

Many of the mourners were in tears, and some wore the World Cup winner's famous 10 Argentina jersey as they gathered at the Casa Rosada.

Dozens of other shirts of different teams tossed in by weeping visitors were scattered on and around the casket.

Fans blew kisses as they passed Maradona's wooden casket in the main lobby of the Casa Rosada, some striking their chests with closed fists and shouting "Lets go Diego".

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