Brighton and Hove Albion welcome ban on homophobic fan Brighton News

ALBION has welcomed the guilty verdict in the case of a fan who shouted homophobic slurs during a game against Arsenal.

Arsenal supporter Reece, of Lonsdale Avenue, Romford, has been fined £106 for the homophobic abuse, which happened in October last year.

After realizing he had been spotted, the 21-year-old tried to get off the ground but was stopped by staff and then arrested.

The case comes two months after an Albion season ticket holder was banned indefinitely after racial abuse on social media in June 2021 after the Euro final.

A club spokesperson said: “We have a zero tolerance approach to all forms of anti-social behaviour, and that includes any form of abuse.

“We have worked closely with Sussex Police to identify and prosecute the individual concerned and we welcome the court’s guilty verdict. The individual will also be subject to an indefinite ban from the Amex.

Darren Balkham, a dedicated football officer with Sussex Police, said: “Homophobia is a recurring theme that I have encountered in my 23 years of service at football events.

“Unfortunately, a minority of football fans perceive this type of abuse as just a kind of ‘joking’.

“This means football fans often don’t feel empowered to report these incidents.

“But mentalities are starting to change and unacceptable behavior is being challenged. Both Brighton and Hove Albion and the FA have policies in place to tackle homophobic chanting and respond to incidents.

“We are delighted that this incident has been brought to our attention. This case demonstrates that homophobic chants have no place in our stadiums or in football itself.

Public Prosecutor for CPS Sud-Est and CPS Football national leader Richard Dawes said: “There is no place for homophobia in society.

“The comments are unacceptable and would cause great offense regardless of venue. Brighton is known for its inclusive culture with a large LGBTQ community.

“Behaviour like this will not be tolerated and we are grateful to the staff member at Brighton and Hove Albion for their quick response in both acknowledging the hateful nature of this chant and taking immediate action to address the situation.

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This notice was published: 2022-04-07 08:21:39

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