Fan found guilty of using racist language
A Newcastle United supporter who was arrested for using racist language inside St. James’ Park has been fined £300.
Steven Hogg, from Gateshead, was arrested during the home Premier League fixture against Blackburn Rovers on November 10, 2010.
Hogg, who was up before magistrates on Thursday, avoided a Football Banning Order (FBO) which the Police had applied for.
The Magpies now plan to impose their own ban on the 49-year-old, and the Club’s head of security Steve Storey re-iterated United’s stance on the situation.
He said: “Persistent foul and abusive language is not acceptable at football matches.
“There is no excuse whatsoever for the use of racist language. Such behaviour is a breach of ground regulations, which may lead to ejection and a ban from the ground.
“It also may constitute a criminal offence which may result in arrest, prosecution, a football banning order and a criminal conviction. The Club are determined to stamp out such behaviour and take firm action against any offending supporter.”
He continued: “The Club have worked closely with a number of organisations, particularly Show Racism The Red Card, the Newcastle United Supporters’ Trust, and Kick It Out, on many initiatives.
“We also work very closely with Northumbria Police to take firm action to identify offending supporters and to prosecute them.
“We are very disappointed that the magistrates did not see fit to support our efforts to try and stamp out racism at football by issuing a banning order.
“But, irrespective of this, the Club will be banning Hogg from St. James’ Park for a period of time which is yet to be determined”.
Mr Storey added his thoughts that other supporters have a part to play in helping to clean up the game.
He concluded: “Supporters need to report such behaviour at the time it occurs to stewards or police, so we can take action, and we actually want to encourage nearby supporters in numbers, to challenge offending supporters.
“We also want to encourage all supporters to come to the match and not use foul, abusive and racist language or behaviour, but instead, to get behind the team to create an atmosphere to be proud of.”