Charges dropped over Y-word

Charges have been dropped against three football fans who were facing prosecution for using the Y-word.

Last Updated: 10/03/14 at 10:26

More of the games that matter

2 years free Sky Broadband Unlimited for Sky Sports customers

Gary Whybrow, 31, Sam Parsons, 24, and Peter Ditchman, 52, were initially charged with using the language at Tottenham matches last autumn.

However the Crown Prosecution Service said the words could not legally be counted as "threatening, abusive or insulting" in the circumstances.

Baljit Ubhey from the CPS said: "In accordance with our duty to keep all cases under review we have conducted a senior level review of this case.

"It has now been concluded that, according to the Code for Crown Prosecutors, there is insufficient evidence to provide a realistic prospect of conviction, and that the cases against Peter Ditchman, Gary Whybrow and Sam Parsons should be discontinued.

"In considering whether a criminal offence could be proved we have to look objectively at the words used, and the context in which they were used.

"As part of the review, the context of the use of the words alleged in this case was reconsidered, and we have decided that, although the same words used in other contexts could in theory satisfy the criteria for 'threatening, abusive or insulting', it is unlikely that a court would find that they were in the context of the three particular cases in question.

"We have therefore concluded that there is insufficient evidence for a realistic prospect of conviction. This decision has no bearing on any other cases that may be brought to our attention and all cases will be considered on their own facts and merits."

A statement from Tottenham read: "The Club welcomes the recognition of the importance of context. We have always maintained that our fans do not use the Y-word with any intent to offend.

"As with all cases where fans are arrested for football-related offences, we were obliged to issue bans and the Club can confirm that these supporters' bans have been rescinded with immediate effect and refunds will be made for matches missed on season tickets, as per Club policy."

The trio were accused of a public order offence for using the word. Police had previously warned football fans not to use the word, which is used to refer to Tottenham fans and is regularly used in football chants.

Meanwhile, Chelsea have promised to take the strongest possible action and press for criminal convictions if anyone engages in anti-Semitic behaviour during Saturday's Premier League clash with Tottenham at Stamford Bridge.

More of the games that matter

2 years free Sky Broadband Unlimited for Sky Sports customers

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

B

alotelli would've scored if the goals height was 3 times higher too...

footyfan52
Rodgers defends Balotelli

A

s if storey would ever get invited on a stag do

dooby
Does Wenger Know He's To Blame?

I

disagree. We sit here in our ivory towers looking down our noses at people we perceive tio be thick, but if Harry Redknapp and Tim Sherwood can do it, frankly, anyone can.........

HarryBoulton
Roy: Rooney can become manager

Footer 365

Government reveal plans aimed at making it easier for fans to run football clubs

The Government has revealed plans to establish a group of experts aimed at making it easier for fans to run football clubs.

Louis van Gaal felt individual errors spoiled a good display from Manchester United in draw at West Brom

Louis van Gaal felt that Manchester United produced their 'best match of the season', despite the 2-2 draw at West Brom.

Premier League: QPR forward Adel Taarabt criticises Harry Redknapp over claims he is unfit

QPR forward Adel Taarabt has hit back at manager Harry Redknapp over claims that he is overweight and unfit to play.

Mail Box

Reimbursing Fans? How Patronising...

It's something of a return to form for the mailbox with mails on Southampton (Liverpool fans are cynical), the gorgeous Graziano Pelle, Arsenal, Spurs and more...

Let's Face It, Liverpool Were Utter Dross

It's a reactive Monday morning Mailbox. Liverpool fans are getting pretty sodding worried, whilst we have the latest on the Southampton CRISIS. Plus, well done Michael Oliver...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property