Thursday, July 21, 2011

Celtic fan admits making racist and sectarian rants on Facebook

A Celtic supporter has admitted posting racist and sectarian comments on a Facebook page opposed to the club’s manager Neil Lennon.

Michael Bailey, 20, left a number of messages on the social networking site about Rangers fans, the club’s then manager Walter Smith and El Hadji Diouf, the African forward who was on loan to the Ibrox side at the end of last season.

On a page entitled ‘Neil Lennon should be banned’ and on his personal Facebook page, Bailey posted comments which included ‘Glasgow rangers yous are s*** you bunch of orange b*******’ and ‘send diouf back to the jungle’. Bailey also described Mr Smith as a "dirty pie eating Orange b******".

Bailey, from Bridgeton in Glasgow, appeared at Glasgow Sheriff Court on Wednesday and admitted a charge of posting comments of a "racist and sectarian nature" on the internet between March 7 and 8 this year.

The court heard how a police taskforce began a review of social network sites and their contents after an increase of sectarian football-related hostility and offending following a fiery Old Firm match on March 3.

Procurator fiscal depute Julie Clark told the court police officers investigated further and identified that Bailey had made a comment on the 'Neil Lennon should be banned' Facebook page and his own.

Ms Clark said another message posted on Bailey’s page was "Oh the rangers are s**** ya bunch of p*** lovers send diouf back to the jungle and you can go back with him...ya smelly orange c***...soldiers are we...TIOCFAIDH AR LA."

Bailey was detained by police on April 30 and interviewed. The court was told he accepted full responsibility for posting the comments.

The 20-year-old has been released on bail with the conditions that he must not enter any SPL ground, or Hampden Stadium. He must also sign on at his local police station during the first half of every Celtic match.

Sheriff Johanna Johnstone QC deferred sentencing until next month for reports. Defence lawyer Stephen Bentley will give his plea in mitigation then.
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