Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Celtic fan to face court over IRA flag

By Gavin Roberts
Published: 14/05/2009

A FOOTBALL fan who waved an IRA flag at an Old Firm match has been banned for life from Celtic games.

Celtic FC said Peterhead man Aaron Laing would not be welcome to attend any of the Glasgow team’s home or away matches.

The Aberdeenshire 21-year-old enraged fellow supporters after waving a flag with IRA scrawled over the front at last weekend’s Old Firm match.

A Celtic FC spokeswoman today said: “I can confirm the club has banned him for life.”

She added the club would not sell him tickets for away games, but admitted its control over Aaron Laing’s attendance at games outside of Glasgow was limited.

Aaron, from Peterhead, in Aberdeenshire was photographed waving an Irish tricolour as he watched the match at Ibrox, which Celtic lost 1-0.

The Aberdeenshire man claimed the flag did not belong to him and insisted he found it on a seat at the football ground and put it down when he realised IRA was on the front.

It emerged Aaron had been dating Celtic manager Gordon Strachan's niece, Ellis Paterson, 17, the daughter of Grampian Emerald Supporters’ Club president Dave Paterson.

Mr Paterson had said the club did not condone Aaron’s behaviour.

Police in Glasgow were today continuing their investigation into the incident.
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